Friday, September 9, 2011

Salt-free Diets

We don't appreciate many things until they're gone. For instance, salt. We sprinkle it here, dump it there, and it seems harmless enough.
Yet, for some people eating salt can cause all sorts of problems. I was at risk for toxemia during my last three pregnancies and the doctor was so strict he told me not even to drink milk or eat celery because these foods contains natural sodium.
Now, too much salt elevates my blood pressure. I have a sis with congestive heart failure and she needs salt-free foods to keep her lungs from filling with fluid.
Since I've been stuck in this dietary desert for much of my life I told her eating food the way God made it isn't so bad. For me it's better than having a stroke, which took my mom's life at age 58 and caused a different sister to lose the verbal part of her brain in her 70s. Forsaking salt is better than not being able to enjoy more years with my children and grandchildren.
I've discovered eggs can be eaten with only pepper, and sometimes I make an omelet with bell peppers, onions -- and when my BP is OK, I melt a little cheese over it.
I usually am on a low-sodium diet, so I eat homemade waffles and pancakes, sometimes a blueberry muffin, oatmeal (I don't even miss the salt in it) with raisins, nuts, cinnamon and brown sugar.
Lunch, usually our main meal, I can have talapia, steak, pork chops, pork steak, chicken and beef and pork roasts and not miss the salt. With grilled steak I have marinated it only with lemon juice and a little garlic or Mrs. Dash, but often I add a little worcestershire sauce.
I sprinkle a little lemon pepper on talapia, which does contain some salt. If I'm eating something that has salt, I eat only a small serving.
Pork roasts I cover with pepper and sliced onion, add water, and cook in a 450-degree oven until the meat thermometer says it is done. Pork chops I use an electric skillet with a lid, heat to the highest heat, add quite a bit of oil, and keep turning them until they're done. I sprinkle Mrs. Dash on the meat the last two times I turn it. Pork steak I cover with a small amount of prepared barbecue sauce and cook in the oven on 300 degrees for two hours,adding a little sauce again when I take it out.
People who are on a low-salt diet and like ham will find if they soak ham slices in warm water, then place it between paper towels and squeeze, much of the salt will come out. When I cook a pot of beans, I add a ham bone with a little meat attached, and no salt.
Fresh or frozen green beans are delicious cooked, not steamed, in a small amount of water on medium-high heat for about five minutes (Watch or it will boil dry). Add unsalted butter. I drain canned vegetables, rinse and cook in water. Corn on the cob is good with only butter.
Lettuce is delicious when you add only vinegar, especially if you top it with mandarin oranges or sliced peaches and a little of the juice. Top salad with red or green grapes, too, and all sorts of different veggies like you would see at a salad bar.
I you have trouble with salt, perhaps some of these ideas will help you.