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Mikki3mm posted:
My husband had a heart attack last week. Of course, we never really watched what we ate prior to this, but now we are geared up for a life style change. But, trying to watch sodium intake is making me crazy. It seems like everything in the store is loaded with sodium. I don't know what to feed my husband.

Please help
Amelia_WebMD_Staff responded:
Hi Mikki3mm!

I'm sure that other members of the community have great suggestions to share! Congratulations on stepping up and making the change for a healthier diet for your family.

Here are a few links to WebMD Slideshows and articles that should give you some tips to start creating those healthy meals!

WebMD Heart Failure and a Low-Sodium Diet

WebMD Low-Sodium Diet: How to Eat Less Sodium at Restaurants

WebMD High Blood Pressure and the DASH diet

I hope that some of these help! Try to stay clear of processed food, sauces, red meats and cheese if possible. Try salt substitutes, fish, herbs for flavoring and steamed vegetables instead! Best of luck and keep us posted on how you all are doing!
Best Wishes! Amelia
Almost2L882 responded:
2 years ago I had a mild stroke at the age of 26. I have been diagnosed with SEVERE Hypertension. I'm on a ridiculous dosage of several medications, as well as a sodium restricted diet. Since then, I stay away from fast food (yes the salads have just as much salt in them as the burgers and such). I have resorted to making my own meals. I make everyday foods, but don't add any salt. I only use fresh vegetables, fruits and I make my own breads. You can't completely avoid salt, and the body does actually need it. Just be cautious, if you like, I can send you some fantastic recipes from a low sodium cookbook that I use ALL the time!! Also another tip...Mrs. Dash. They are FANTASTIC no salt seasonings!
eepico responded:
I know how you feel. I have kidney problems and had to stop the sodium and proteins.

If you think sodium in everything is a problem, try the protein in everything! They add protein to everything. I don't know what to eat any more!

I solved the sodium problem by not buying in cans, already prepared foods (frozen included). At the grocery store, skip all the canned food and stay in the perimeter. Cook everything from scratch and do not add salt. For flavor I use a lot of lime (better than lemon), garlic, olive oil, dash, fresh oregano, cilantro, bell peppers. Again, everything fresh. That's the key. And.... READ the labels... very important.
breakertruckeronenine responded:
It's hard! American lifestyle is not geared to low sodium eating. Short answer is to stop eating out & cook at home, using fresh ingredients. Anything you make at home will have less salt.

Beware hidden sources of sodium: bread, flour tortillas, condiments. Fresh, frozen veggies, dried beans, not canned, although Eden Organics makes no salt added beans. Shop the perimeter of the store, avoid things that come in boxes.

There are some convenience items that are OK, like Amy's Kitchen Lower in Sodium frozen entrees. Check at your local health food store. Good luck!
davidcrempel responded:
I spent a week in the hospital in Sept '09. My blood pressure was through the roof 240/120 (ish). I had originally gone to the clinic to have the doctor look at my shins and ankles because they were retaining a ton of water. After blood tests my doctor told me that my kidney's were damaged. Because my blood pressure was so high he sent me directly to emergency. I stayed there for 6 days while they worked at regulating it. A kidney specialist came in to see me and said I MUST lower my sodium intake and live a healthier lifestyle. Understand that I was 296 lbs at the time, frequenting fast food outlets twice a day and drinking 6 2 litres of coke a week. It's disgusting to even think about it. My best advise to you is take a nutrition seminar (your local hospital probably offers them for free or can direct you to someone who does). Also, shop around the outskirts of the grocery store. Fresh fruits and vegetables, meats etc. Avoid processed stuff in the middle of the store as much as possible. Read the labels. I started an exercise regime along with it and to date, I have lost 101 lbs, my kidneys are functioning well, I no longer have sleep apnea and my bp is normal AND I FEEL GREAT. I never would have imagined that I could do this much less feel as good as i do now. WebMD has encouraged me along the way too and helped to keep me on the right path.
Asuage02 replied to Amelia_WebMD_Staff's response:
Hi Mikki,

Make sure your husband is drinking plenty of water, Water flushes sodium out of the body. Also try using lemmon pepper instead of salt and there is a new low sodium salt on themarket or you can use sea salt. Unfortunately you will have to cook more rather than use canned foods from themarket. Especially products containing tomatoes. Campbell's soup has some nice low sodium soups to season with but then again it is because they are using sea salt. Son't forget the water, #1 on the list is drinking more water!

Best of luck to you and yours and God Bless
Asuage02 replied to eepico's response:
Another problem I ofund occurred when I was shopping for meat, I spoke to the meat market manager and found that most meats, especially chicken are injected with a sodium solution. Read the labels and try to get those with less than a 5% solution. Yoou will have to go with the more espensive brands rather than store brands to get less sodium.
dondee85 responded:
Don't forget about the potassium in a lot of sodium free seasonings; a lot of bp medications will want you to watch your potassium levels. Also those with kidney problems should watch out for sodium substitutes with a lot of potassium.
dondee85 replied to Asuage02's response:
Don't forget about your potassium levels; a lot of bp medications will want you to keep an eye on this. Also those with kidney problems want to avoid foods/seasonings with alot of potassium. I'm saying this because alot of salt substitutes use potassium instead.
Asuage02 replied to Asuage02's response:
Best net on the meat is to find a store with a meat market. So many stores get meat from packers who do the injecting. HEB is one store which uses fresh meat, I think Kroger does too but check it out. Chicken is especially bad for sodium injections. Looks like were going to all have to move to a farm, grow our own veggies and raise our own meat!


Sharron B
tbfoster replied to Asuage02's response:
Sodium is sodium. Sea salt is sodium. MSG contains sodium. Sodium Bicarbonate contains sodium.

Don't aim for a salt free diet, we need salt. 1500 to 2000mg of salt or sodium a day is a low salt diet. Happy medium works.

Frozen veggies contain less salt then canned. It is ridiculously easy to make your own soup. Very surprising things contain salt like cereals, and ice cream. Reading labels is good.

A half gallon of fluids a day is recommended. Some foods are also considered to be a fluid which is anything liquid at room temperature. Soup counts, watermelon counts, J-ello counts.

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