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You will find that the recipes on this site are written from a low-sodium perspective. I am not doing this for blood pressure reasons; my blood pressure usually runs around 94/64 or so! But I, a life-long salt and seasoned salt lover, have found that when I am eating a diet that contains even a moderate amount of sodium, my good dietary intentions absolutely flee. I have NO SELF CONTROL WHATSOEVER about sticking to a diet, because the food just tastes Too Good and I want More, More, More! I have discovered that if I eat very little sodium – like under 1 gm and preferably under 500 mg per day – I can control my appetite and stick to my diet. This makes sense – salt is a known appetite stimulant!

In addition, my body somehow seems willing to give up more poundage, so to speak, if those sodium levels in my food are not sky high. Naturally, this takes a bit of commitment, as eating a low-sodium diet takes a concerted amount of effort! I kind of have to go out of my way to get no salt added canned goods such as tomato sauce, etc, and I have to be very careful with most canned foods in general.

I have discovered that I am making a LOT more things from scratch, such as beans. I have not been able to find any low sodium chickpeas, pinto beans, etc, in a can, so I just cook them from dry beans. I have also stopped eating a lot of processed foods, including soy products that have traditionally been a dietary staple, because of the excess sodium they contain.

Several months ago I made an AMAZING discovery that helped me immeasurably in my low-sodium quest. I discovered something called Also Salt. You may have to work a little to locate it, but it is very easy to order online, and does a GREAT job of adding that saltiness without the sodium. It comes in three flavors, and I use all of them regularly!

If you are not trying to restrict the sodium in your diet, feel free to just add however much salt you desire into the recipes. I imagine they will taste just as good! But do try to at least be aware of how much salt you are taking in. It never hurts to cut down a bit!

Here are excerpts from a really interesting story at USA about Ed McMahon’s weight loss; it spotlights how decreasing your sodium intake really helps the weight loss process.

Ed McMahon savors low-salt weight loss

For 30 years, Ed McMahon was the “salt of the earth” as Johnny Carson’s sideman on The Tonight Show. Now he’s adding flavor as host of Next Big Star. But one role McMahon declines to be cast in is that of an overweight person with a high-salt diet.

“Most people take in way too much salt,” says McMahon. “I weighed 255 pounds and I realized I was one of those people.”

But unlike many Americans, McMahon didn’t pay his overly salty diet lip service. He wanted to look and feel healthier so he actually did something about it.

The 6’3″ former host of Star Search lost 50 pounds.

“I reduced my salt intake, increased my intake of fruits and vegetables, knocked off most junk food, and began to walk regularly,” reports McMahon…..


McMahon’s first step was to cut his salt intake.

The average daily USA diet contains 3,300 milligrams of salt a day, or about a teaspoon. This is over a third more than the 2,400 milligrams currently recommended.

McMahon’s reduction in dietary sodium parallels the recommendations of the Harvard-based Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) study published recently in the New England Journal of Medicine.

The DASH diet — which emphasizes fruits, vegetables, and low-fat dairy products — was shown to lower blood pressure by seven points. But a person with hypertension who combines DASH with a diet containing 1,200 milligrams or less of table salt daily, as McMahon does, would likely reduce blood pressure by 11 points…..


“Clearly, salt is the chief culprit in this — but not the only one,” says Dr. Richard Moore, co-author of the The Salt Solution: A Complete 9-Step Program to Reduce Salt, Increase Potassium, and Dramatically Lower the Risk of Salt-Induced Diseases. “The sodium-potassium food intake ratio is dramatically unbalanced in most Americans.”

Recent reevaluations of 1980’s data from 10,000 people in 32 countries shows that low levels of potassium combined with high levels of sodium are doubly dangerous.

“Every cell in the body has, in effect, a sodium-potassium pump that attempts to balance potassium within the cell and levels of sodium outside of it,” explains Moore.

Chronically high salt intake coupled with perpetually low daily potassium compromises the pumping mechanism, affecting everything from hypertension to insulin resistance and decreased immune system response….


…thanks to his low-sodium diet, McMahon looks like a leading man these days.

“I weigh 207 pounds. That’s just two more than when I played football at Boston College,” says McMahon. “As a result of my dietary and exercise changes, I have more energy than I did in my late thirties. Then again, I need it!”

By Mike Falcon, Spotlight Health
With medical adviser Stephen A. Shoop, M.D.

AP file Ed McMahon

Entire article may be found here.