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Living Well In Yalobusha County

Shop Wiser And Bring Home Less Sodium

By Pamela Redwine

Many foods in the grocery store are laden with a lot of added sodium. Here are the danger foods along with ideas of how to make better substitutions to lower the amount of sodium you eat:

• Canned foods – most canned foods are very high in sodium. Soups, canned tomatoes, pasta sauce, canned veggies and pasta dishes are included in this mix.  Choose canned foods that have no salt added or use fresh items instead.

• Deli meat and cheese is high in sodium – use fresh chicken or fish, canned tuna, nut butter without added salt.

• Frozen dinners are very high in sodium.  Choose frozen veggies and make your own meals with fresh poultry/fish and plain rice or pasta.

• Boxed pasta and rice mixes – are very high in salt – use plain rice or pasta with seasonings instead.

• Grain items like bread, crackers, and packaged cereals are high in salt – choose lower salt versions instead.

• Pickled foods, dressings and condiments are high in sodium; choose fresh veggies and vinegar.

Cook Without Salt

Choose salt-free herbs and seasonings to flavor your food instead of using salt:

• Dried or fresh herbs

• Garlic or ginger

• Flavored vinegar and salt-free condiments


Make Better Selections When Eating Out

Most restaurant foods are laden with sodium. Here is how to make better choices:

• Know before you go – most of your favorite places are likely to have nutrition information online – be aware of what you are ordering and make better choices.

• Order plain items without salt – like baked fish or chicken, baked potatoes, pasta with diced fresh tomatoes, steamed veggies, a plain burger without condiments.

• Avoid deli meat, breaded items, cheese, bread, olives, mustard, pickles, pretzels, sauces, soups and dressing.


Recipe of the week

Chilled Red Beans And Rice


1/4 cup reduced-fat Italian dressing

3 tablespoons water

2 tablespoons white vinegar

1/2 teaspoon dried oregano

1/4 teaspoon ground red pepper

1/4 teaspoon dried thyme

1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1 cup cooked long-grain rice, chilled

1 cup sliced celery

3/4 cup chopped onion and 3/4 cup chopped tomato

1 (15-ounce) can red kidney beans rinsed and drained

Celery leaves (optional)


Combine first 7 ingredients in a jar.  Cover tightly, and shake vigorously. Chill.

Combine dressing mixture, rice, and next 4 ingredients in a medium bowl; toss well. Cover and chill. Garnish with celery leaves, if desired. Yield: 5 (1-cup) servings.

Per Serving: Calories 138, Fat 0.7 grams, Protein 6.4 grams, Carbohydrate 27.5 grams, Fiber 303 grams, Cholesterol 0 mg, Sodium 300 mg

Exchanges: 1.5 Starch, 1 Vegetable

Recipe Source: Quick and Easy Diabetic Recipes

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