Hello everyone! I hope that you all are having a good day, from wherever you are. It is a stunning day here in Scotland. The sun is out and its 17 degrees! It’s only March. As you as tell I am very happy about this. I’m sitting in my garden, on a bed of pillows right now as I write this blog post. I am hoping to get a tan. Tanned me is a different person.
Anyway, today I am going to be talking about salt. Last week was Salt Awareness Week. I recorded a podcast all about salt and how salt consumption can be detrimental to our health. Give it a listen if you are interested in this. This week I wanted to share with you how to lower your salt in your diet (there are several ways).
Here is the podcast:
P.S. Thank you for the love on last week’s podcast and blog. You guys seemed to be interested in probiotics and their benefits. This makes me very happy!
Why Reduce Salt in Our Diets?
- Salt is the number one risk factor for hypertension (high blood pressure).
- High blood pressure is one of the leading causes of cardiovascular diseases.
- Cardiovascular diseases kill 31% of the global population and is the number one killer, above all other causes of death.
As we can see, this is a big deal. There’s a infographic below that tells you a little bit about salt consumption and the health complications.
The Good News
Most of our salt in our diet comes from processed foods and packaged foods (foods that we haven’t made from scratch). That means that the salt we add to our foods is not the main culprit but the processed foods that we are eating.
What Can You Do to Reduce Salt Intake?
- The number one thing that you can do to reduce your salt intake is to eat less processed foods! Especially foods that are intentionally salty (crisps, ready meals etc).
- However, you probably won’t find any processed foods without added salt, even if they aren’t intentionally salty.
- Use reduced sodium salts/ salt alternatives.
- Add less salt to your foods when cooking and on top.
- Use more food in your cooking – add more vegetables (onion, leek, garlic), herbs and spices, lemon juice, vinegar.
Reduced Sodium Salt
You can find 100 different brands that are reduced salt or less sodium salts. Simply google it or head to your local supermarket.
Unrefined, pink Himalayan salt is naturally less in sodium than normal table salt. This is a fantastic source, although still be careful with how much you are adding.
We require sodium for many functions within the body. However, foods naturally have sodium in them in very small quantities. The recommendation is no more than 6g of salt a day. I would argue the less the better.
The less salt that you consume, the more your taste buds will adjust and crave less salt. It does take time. Use salt alternatives and slowly reduce your salt usage in foods.
Herbs and Spices
Herbs and spices are an amazing way of adding flavour to foods. They are not only flavourful but incredibly nutritious (among the healthiest foods you can consume). The more herbs and spices the better! You can add herbs to just about everything. Find the ones that you like and add them in everything and anything.
TOP TIP: Try your food as it is cooking and find other herbs, spices, pepper, low sodium-stocks to add first before adding salt. If you must add it once other foods have been added, go for it. You’ll probably need much less.
Experiment with different tastes and textures and see what you can discover.
My favourite stock:
We can all benefit from reducing the salt in our diets. I know it’s something I’ve been very mindful of recently. I hope this blog post finds you well and encourages you to eat less salt!
Thank you for reading.
I am grateful for every single one of you who reads my blogs!