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 Post subject: Share your tips for quick & easy low sodium meals and snacks
PostPosted: Sat Jul 18, 2015 4:33 pm 
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Making Threats to Punks Again

Joined: Thu Jan 06, 2011 12:25 pm
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My doctor told me that due to a serious health issue, I need to lower my sodium levels to under 2000 mg a day. I'm a slow cook and often depend on store bought frozen meals. Now it looks like I'll have to cut back on that and do more home cooking. I would be so grateful for any suggestions for quick and easy low sodium meals and snacks; store bought or homemade are both welcome!


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 Post subject: Re: Share your tips for quick & easy low sodium meals and sn
PostPosted: Sat Jul 18, 2015 6:01 pm 
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Vegan Since Before There Were Vegetables
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Joined: Sun Sep 05, 2010 8:43 pm
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Location: Redmond, WA
You can still buy frozen veggies and fruit and bagged salad mixes and things to make your life easier. Ezekiel makes a no salt bread (though not sure if it has honey since i haven't had it in a while). If you go to a specialty asian market you can ask about no salt soy sauce, which does exist. My dad had a chronic condition where he couldn't have much salt, and that really helped. if you go out to eat or order take out from a chinese place you can ask them to make you a veggie stir fry with lots of garlic and ginger and no soy sauce or salt. many places can accommodate you.

You can make your own peanut sauce iwth no salt peanut butter and then add a lot of lime juice and vinegar to make it flavorful. Spicy flavors also tend to cover up missing salt pretty well, but beware of sauces like franks which are really high in sodium. tobasco is much lower in sodium. and you can still add SOME salt to things. 2000mg is hard, but not impossible! you can buy no salt nuts for snacks and no salt added broth to cook with. I like a lot of the Mrs. Dash seasonings to cook with.

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 Post subject: Re: Share your tips for quick & easy low sodium meals and sn
PostPosted: Sat Jul 18, 2015 6:02 pm 
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The Real Hamburger Helper
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hmm, I imagine you could make some dips like hummus etc at home with chopped veggies for a pretty simple snack. Store bought hummus might pack a bunch of secret sodium, but it is pretty easy to make at home.

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 Post subject: Re: Share your tips for quick & easy low sodium meals and sn
PostPosted: Sun Jul 19, 2015 2:41 pm 
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Nailed to the V
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Location: Coeur d' Alene, ID
Great post...my doctor has recently also told me to watch my sodium. I am trying to cook even more from scratch, but I know not everyone has the time I do to cook. And the last two weeks, I've had 8 stitches in my thumb, so I've HAD to rely on convenience foods since I can't chop veggies! I've incorporated more bagged veggies & deli prepped food from the local health food store when time is an issue- mini peppers, baby carrots, veggie plates, etc. I buy the low sodium version of almost everything- ketchup, soups, breads (I never realized how much sodium is hiding in bread), etc. I've tried to cut back on condiments, since many are high in salt. (I never have heard of the no-sodium soy...will have to try and locate). I use olives and pickles sparingly these days. Most prepared frozen foods are also pretty high in sodium, so I try and limit those. Not the bagged frozen stuff, as ijustdiedinside noted, but the prepared meals and such. I have become even more of a label reader, if that is possible! I buy low sodium canned beans, and then rinse them well to remove even more of the sodium. I use light salt just to bring out the flavor if I'm baking or cooking vegetables and go heavy on the pepper & other spices.

My biggest challenge has been cutting back on convenience foods- faux meats, prepared tofu, etc. I love to cook and often like to make many of these from scratch, but I sometimes rely on them like many of us (plus some I just enjoy such as hot dogs, veggie burgers, ribs, mac and cheese, etc) but especially in the summer, I cook much less so as to not heat up the house.

Amy's has more 'Light In Sodium' frozen vegan meals out now, so when I'm in a pinch, these seem like a better choice in frozen foods.

Somewhat quick foods I like to prepare in the summer- hummus with jicima or other veggies, chix salad with chickpeas, celery, grapes and mayo (home made is lower sodium, but I still prefer Veganaise), pasta salad with lots of fresh veggies & a low sodium dressing, coleslaw with red cabbage and random veggies thrown in, quinoa salad with lots of fresh veggies, black beans in a corn tortilla, with veggies, etc; fruit smoothies with no-salt PB toast, oatmeal, apples or other fresh fruit as a snack, fried tofu with a scant pinch of salt and pepper.

Good luck LFL! If you find any great links for this topic, be sure to post!

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 Post subject: Re: Share your tips for quick & easy low sodium meals and sn
PostPosted: Tue Jul 28, 2015 8:42 pm 
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Making Threats to Punks Again

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Thanks guys! I SO appreciate all these great suggestions. Here are some of my own tips from what I've learned so far:

- The thing I've figured out since this diagnosis is that if I make a smoothie for breakfast every morning, that's at least one meal I don't have to figure out.

- In addition to a squeeze of lemon on top of some of my foods, I find fresh herbs really brighten the meals. I add them to salads stews and hummus sandwiches. So far I've used cilantro and basil but I'm planning to branch out to dill and parsley soon. I would include mint but it gives me acid reflux so I try to avoid it.

- When making a big batch of low sodium food, make extra and freeze the leftovers. I'm wishing I'd done this with the yellow split pea dal I've got in the refrigerator.

-- Vary the veggies I buy for snacking on. I'm tired of baby carrots and cauliflower, so I think I'm going to get some radishes and sugar snap peas next week. Why not? They can be thinly diced and dipped in a little low sodium hummus.

-- Speaking of hummus, the lowest sodium brand I was able to find at Whole Foods was Cedar's Zesty Lemon flavor Hummus. It's 85 mg of Sodium in a 28g (around 2 Tbsp, I think) serving. Not as good as making my own from scratch, but better than a lot of the store-bought alternatives.

-- Silver Palate makes a low sodium marinara sauce in a jar that has just 115 mg of sodium in a 1/2 cup. That's pretty great when you consider most pasta doesn't contain any sodium.

-- I'm still looking for a low sodium salsa that tastes good. I tried Green Mountain and it just tasted like vinegar with a little tomato to me. If anyone has suggestions on this front, I'd welcome them.

-- I found a recipe for a white bean dip with garlic, olive oil and fresh rosemary. I plan to try to make that one soon, sans salt or maybe with only a little salt. I plan to use Eden beans since they are low sodium, and to rinse them, though I did this even before my doctor told me to cut down the sodium.

-- I read a good suggestion online for dining at restaurants. Order your meal without salt, and with the sauce on the side. Then dip the tines of your fork in the sauce as you eat so you will taste a little without taking most of it in. This also works with salads and salad dressing, though at home I stick to the lowest sodium dressing I can find and put less of it on my salad.

-- My find of today: I love Miyoko's Kitchen vegan cheeses (we only buy them on rare occasions because they aren't cheap). I wrote to the company to find out the sodium content of their cheeses, and they told me I could find on this page by clicking on the pictures of each cheese. Their cream cheese is entirely sodium free and some of the others aren't too bad. According to this article, dairy cheeses count as low sodium if under 140 mg an ounce. Obviously it's not a food to indulge in a lot, but vegan cheeses like Miyoko's Classic Double Cream Chive, French Style Winter Truffle, and my favorite, Fresh Loire Valley in a Fig Leaf, are all either 100 mg an ounce or less. Which means I can still have a little here and there on special occasions, as long as I keep it in moderation.

-- Moral of the story above: Email the company about their product's sodium content if that information isn't readily available to you! I'm thinking of checking in with Whole Foods about their bakery's breads next.

-- I've also decided to start seeing a dietitian. It's expensive and I wish my insurance covered it, but I think my health is worth this expense.


Please keep the suggestions coming! And mention any tasty low sodium dips, sauces, condiments, etc. that you come across.


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 Post subject: Re: Share your tips for quick & easy low sodium meals and sn
PostPosted: Wed Jul 29, 2015 1:07 am 
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Drinks Wild Tofurkey
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Trader Joe's has a salt-free roasted tomato salsa that I remember being pretty decent.

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