At his last checkup, your dad’s doctor found his blood pressure was a little high. Before he goes on a prescription medication, the doctor suggested cutting some salt from his diet. The American Heart Association recommends no more than 2,300 mg per day, that’s 1 teaspoon per day. For those on a low-sodium diet, it’s ideal to use less than 0.75 teaspoons each day.
Your dad likes salt. You’re not sure how you’ll be able to get him to skip the salt. Here are some tips for making sure food is flavorful without added salt.
Skip Prepared Foods
Freezer dinners, canned soups, and takeout are loaded with sodium. Make sure your dad is eating freshly prepared foods as often as possible. If he doesn’t like to cook, make sure he has a home care professional who can cook for him. You could also set him up with meals he can pull from the freezer and reheat.
Skip the salt and squeeze fresh lemon, lime, or orange over meats, seafood, and vegetables. The citrus adds flavor without adding much sodium. While some of these fruits do have some sodium naturally, there’s only 1 milligram in an entire lemon or lime. Oranges do not have any sodium.
Use Fresh Herbs and Spices
Add flavor to your dad’s meals using fresh herbs. Basil, rosemary, and chives are easy to grow and don’t have any sodium. Garlic also has no sodium. Dill has 1 milligram of sodium, but that’s in an entire tablespoon. If your dad lives in a climate where it’s hard to keep fresh herbs outside all year, grow some inside in small planter pots. All you need is a sunny window and most herbs thrive indoors.
Mustard has as much as 100 milligrams of sodium in just 1 teaspoon. Salt’s worse with more than 150 milligrams in 1 tablespoon. If your dad cannot live without a condiment, make them yourself. Use lime juice and an avocado to make a spread for sandwiches. Be aware that a cup of avocado does have about 10 milligrams of sodium. Make your own mayonnaise using lemon juice, olive oil, and egg yolks (8 milligrams per large egg yolk).
Caregivers can help prepare nutritious, delicious meals for your dad. Share the dietary guidelines your dad’s doctor gave, and a homecare professional can work with your dad to create meal plans that appeal to him and meet the guidelines. Learn more by calling a home care agency now.
If you or an aging loved-one are considering hiring home health care in Dana Point, CA, please contact the caring staff at Canaan Home Care today!