OK, I missed Food Porn Friday. To make up for it, here’s a little information slide show about sodium from WebMD.com.
In my forever quest to lose weight, I started tracking the amount of sodium I consumed and started looking at labels when grocery shopping. Sodium is an essential mineral. Our bodies need it to maintain proper fluid balance, transmit nerve impulses and assist in muscle contraction and relaxation. But, there is so much salt in our processed food!
I knew that sodium would be higher in TV dinners and soups, but I was surprised to see how high it is in tomato sauce! And the slide show says medicines for headaches and heartburn can contain sodium. I don’t know why it needs to be added to our pills but check your list of ingredients.
As you probably know, too much sodium raises the risk of high blood pressure and kidney disease. And, even though I’ve been told that it’s not the cause of my balance issues, people with Meniere’s Disease have been told to lower their sodium intake as that may lower the frequency of vertigo episodes.
So, I try to find ways to reduce sodium from my diet. I also check out different recipes for inspiration. The Mayo Clinic has a list of low-sodium recipes. Here’s two recipes from their website and the nutritional information for each recipe.
Crispy Potato Skins
You can use any number of herbs or spices to season the potato skins. Try fresh basil, chives, dill, garlic, cayenne pepper, caraway seed, tarragon or thyme.
- 2 medium russet potatoes
Butter-flavored cooking spray
1 tablespoon minced fresh rosemary
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Preheat the oven to 375 F.
Wash the potatoes and pierce with a fork. Place in the oven and bake until the skins are crisp, about 1 hour.
Carefully — potatoes will be very hot — cut the potatoes in half and scoop out the pulp, leaving about 1/8 inch of the potato flesh attached to the skin. Save the pulp for another use.
Spray the inside of each potato skin with butter-flavored cooking spray. Press in the rosemary and pepper. Return the skins to the oven for 5 to 10 minutes. Serve immediately.
|Serving size: 2 potato skin halves|
|Protein||2 g||Sodium||12 mg|
|Carbohydrate||27 g||Fiber||4 g|
|Total fat||0 g||Potassium||332 mg|
|Saturated fat||0 g||Calcium||20 mg|
|Monounsaturated fat||0 g|
Stuffed Chicken Breasts
- 3 tablespoons seedless raisins
1/2 cup chopped onion
1/2 cup chopped celery
1/4 teaspoon minced garlic
1 bay leaf
1 cup chopped and peeled apple
2 tablespoons chopped water chestnuts
4 large chicken breast halves, with the bones removed, each about 6 ounces
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 cup fat-free milk
1 teaspoon curry powder
2 tablespoons all-purpose (plain) flour
1 lemon, cut into 4 wedges
Preheat the oven to 425 F. Lightly coat a baking dish with cooking spray.
In a small bowl, add the raisins and cover with warm water. Set aside and allow the raisins to swell.
Spray a large skillet with cooking spray. Add the onions, celery, garlic and bay leaf. Saute until the onions are translucent, about 5 minutes. Remove the bay leaf and add the apples. Cook for another 2 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Drain the raisins and pat with paper towels to remove the excess water. Add the raisins to the apple mixture. Stir in the water chestnuts and remove from heat. Let cool.
Loosen the skin on the chicken breasts. Place the apple-raisin mixture between the skin and breast. In another skillet, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the chicken breasts and cook until browned, about 5 minutes on each side.
Transfer the chicken breasts to the prepared baking dish. Cover and bake until a meat thermometer registers 170 F, or about 15 minutes. Remove from the oven.
While the chicken is baking, heat the milk, curry powder and flour over low heat in a saucepan. Stir until the mixture thickens, about 5 minutes. Pour the mixture over the chicken breasts. Cover and return the chicken to the oven and bake another 10 minutes.
Transfer the chicken breasts to warmed individual plates. Spoon the sauce from the baking pan over the chicken and garnish with lemon wedges.
|Serving size: 1 stuffed chicken breast|
|Protein||36 g||Sodium||122 mg|
|Carbohydrate||20 g||Fiber||2 g|
|Total fat||16 g||Potassium||505 mg|
|Saturated fat||4 g||Calcium||91 mg|
|Monounsaturated fat||8 g|