Thursday, March 15, 2012

Salt Sensitive

This has nothing to do with thrifting, but I thought I would share....And I will get to the point after  2 paragraphs or so.

They say when you leave home and start University, you will gain about 15 pounds (6.8 kg) in your first year, Also known as "the freshman 15".  Well I nearly doubled that! During my second year, I decided to do something about it. I went on the unofficial WeightWatcher's pragram. By that I mean I did everything but go to the meetings. ( I'm not going to pay for some to say "you can do it!", when I can just go ahead and do it). The thing with "Diets" including the Weightwatcher's program, is that if you want to maintain the results, you need to stay with the program for life. Maybe not as strictly as when you first began though. The point of WeightWatcher's is that you eat the right amount of the right kinds of food, guiding you with a points system.  I ended up losing 40 pounds on this program, and I have maintained it for the last 6 years because I have never really quit the program. There were some things that I didn't follow in the program, one of them being eating diet products, and the other one of them being replacing regular dairy products with fat free ones. Maybe it has something to do with the fact that I grew up on a dairy farm, but I really don't believe that ANY dairy product should be fat free. But that's just my opinion.

A lot of the time when people look at the lable of a food item, they first look at the fat content and or the calories. Though these may be important, it is more important to look at the nutrients it gives you and also the amount of sodium. you need about 1500 mg (a little less than a tsp) everyday in order to keep muscles and such working properly, but if you get more that 2300 mg ( just over 2 tsp) it could lead to high blood pressure which leads to a whole lot of other illnesses you don't want. But if you get too little sodium, it could lead to serious damage also.
(based on a 2000 cal. diet)

So here's the real story realated to my blurb above:

The last day that we were in Disney world, we decided not to pack our own lunches and instead splurge a little by buying lunch there. So at Lunch time we went to Pinochio's Pub or somehting along those lines, I had my nuggets, Fritz had his Burger and fries. Beside us was this family of with three teens, and the one kid had a thing of fries, probably comparable to a medium at McDonalds. Then he takes out a package of salt and pours it ontop of his fries. No biggie, some people like salt on their fries. Then he pours another on his fries and yet another. I'm slightly disturbed already by the amount of salt he pours on what I thought were already salted fries, but then he shocks me even more by pouring two more packets not on his fries, but in his little tub of ketchup! I hope this kid has really good health insurance becuase heart disease is just around the corner for him if that's how much salt he eats!

I'm really into the Blue Menu products that President's Choice offers now. Alot of there foods are low sodium.  Here is a great example. I love corn.  I really do. I buy Blue Menu corn which contains 10 mg of sodium for 341 g of corn. Del Monte ( Not to target them, just first lable  I saw)  has 360 mg of sodium for every 125 g of corn. Lets do the math to make it clearer: (create equal amounts, do some division blah blah blah)

Del Monte: 125 g of corn = 360 mg of sodium
Blue Menu 125 g of corn = 3.7 mg of sodium

What grosses me out even more is Mr Noodles! In one package there is over 1900 mg of sodium and your daily requirement is 1500! I get chest pains just thinking about it or watching other's eat it. However I don't doubt that the kid in the disney pub would add 3 more packets of salt to his serving of Mr Noodles.

I rarely use salt in my cooking either. There are other ways to flavour your food. And if a recipe askes for a tsp of salt...I don't even bother, I've never noticed the difference. Don't get me wrong though, you need sodium in you diet. It's found in a lot of foods naturally. But adding 2 pakets to a tablespoon of ketchup is not a good idea, especially when the meal that comes with the overly salted fries is already atleast 5 times over you recomended daily intake!

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