Bring On the Salt! (Why I Don’t Restrict My Sodium Intake)

Bring on the Salt! Why I Don't Restrict My Sodium Intake.

Image via Flickr CC

Have you ever noticed that the official line on what’s healthy is constantly changing? It’s irritating, isn’t it? I mean, it was just a few decades ago that “they” were saying that cigarettes weren’t all that bad. Obviously, they were wrong on that one. What else are they wrong about? Even in my relatively short lifetime of three decades, I’ve seen the “party line” do a total one-eighty on a number of issues, like trans-fats, margarine vs. butter, eggs, saturated fat, and yes, even salt.

That’s not the only reason I distrust government-approved nutritional guidelines, though. There are lots of ingredients today in our food industry that are terrible for you. Many should be banned altogether, but by the power of corporations with deep pockets and heavy political influence, they remain on tables and on shelves. As a consumer with limited resources, I find that disheartening.

At the end of the day, the best thing that I can do is to get educated about what is in the products on the grocery store shelves so that I can make an informed decision. I cannot currently grow/raise all of my own food, nor can I buy 100% organic, nor can I make everything from scratch. All good things, to be sure, but none that fit within my current reality. Knowledge is power, though, and it just so happens to be readily available if you’re looking.

Today I want to tell you all about one of my favourite foods – one that has indeed been unfairly framed as a bad guy: salt.

saltandpepper
Image via Flickr CC
My long-time love

I have always had a love affair with salty foods. People talk about swooning over chocolate, and how it would be first on the list of things to bring to a deserted island. I feel the same way about a bag of chips or a plate or nachos (mmm, nachos), or  ALL TEX-MEX EVER CREATED, or even just an unrestrained sprinkle of salt over my dinner, salt combined with melting butter atop steaming hot veggies, or a good hearty sprinkle of salt in a bowl of homemade stew, or WHOA NELLY I need to stop there or else this article will never get finished because I’ll be in the kitchen noshing on whatever salty snacks I can find.

[runs to find the tortilla chips and hummus]

So, salt. It’s probably the most popular seasoning of all-time, and I think it’s a darn shame that most people enjoy it with a hefty side of guilty conscience. I enjoy my salt guilt-free for two reasons:

  1. I use only unrefined real sea salt.
  2. The majority of my diet is comprised of unprocessed whole foods.

There is only one time I will recommend that you eat a low-salt diet: if you eat a SAD (standard American diet) where most of what you eat comes from a box or can, and each item has a bajillion-million milligrams of sodium listed on the nutritional label. Then no, you probably shouldn’t add salt from the shaker on top of that. But instead of just buying the boxes and cans labeled “lower sodium!” consider how you might include more whole, fresh foods in your diet instead.

When you start with real, whole foods, and add unrefined salt to taste on top, you can generally trust your body to tell you when enough is enough.

Because I consume salt freely and usually let my tastebuds guide the amount, I am rather picky about the type and brand of salt I buy. I need to ensure that it’s a beneficial part of my diet, not a harmful one. This is where that whole knowledge-is-power thing comes in again.

Truth be told, there is one company that I been loyal to for about five years now when it comes to the salt I put on our family’s table, and that company is Redmond. I have been wanting to write about this topic for a while now, and when they contacted me a few months ago about maybe reviewing some of their products, I did a little jig in my kitchen and said “heck yes”. I mean, I could have written a generic sort of post, but I just totally love it when I can write about the specific companies that I genuinely love and want to share with you.

From their website: “Redmond real salt  is salt exactly the way nature made it–unlike most other salt companies, we don’t add anything and we don’t take anything away. The result is a natural sea salt with more than 60 trace minerals, a unique taste our customers love, and reports of health benefits around the globe.”

ocean

I will admit that I don’t have the most refined and sophisticated palette ever… but I can honestly say that I taste the difference with this salt. It tastes better. It tastes… saltier?! I realize that sounds silly… but I can’t think of any other way to say it. I grew up on the East coast of Canada, and spent many summer days at the oceanside. I can vividly still taste the saltwater in my mouth, and it is reminiscent of that taste: salty, earthy, and unrefined.

They sent me a box full of goodies (they sell other things in addition to salt, like clay, which is a really amazing little product that I may write about sometimes soon) to try out, among them were a few salt products, including a seasoning salt, a garlic salt, and an onion salt.

I use the regular salt all the time in my kitchen. The only reason I’ve bought the bleached, processed stuff at the store in the last five years is to make homemade play dough. I didn’t want to waste my precious Redmond salt on it!

And a new surprise favorite

I had never used their other salt products, though, and I must tell you that I have fallen in love with their seasoning salt. I used to think that seasoning salt was silly. I could just make my own. And it’s true – you could. But their blend is absolutely perfect in the balance of flavours and spices – it’s UH-MAZING on chicken – and it’s ready to use.

As we’ve walked through a lot of stressful seasons of life in the last few years, I have very much appreciated products that have made my life a little easier without compromising on any of my standards. Even real foodies need convenience foods every now and then, and it’s nice to have options for “those days”.

Lately we’ve kept some boneless, skinless chicken breasts (a cut we wouldn’t normally buy) in the freezer, which, combined with my Redmond seasoning salt provides a perfect last-minute meal when fried up quickly in my cast-iron, and paired with some frozen veg. It’s not the most frugal meal ever, but it’s healthier and cheaper than take-out!

So, to recap: I love Redmond salt, and have for 5+ years. I love that I can write about stuff I love and get paid for it. You peeps are smart – you know this is sponsored… but let me remind you once again: I only talk about products that I FO’ REAL love. Can’t buy my love, people. Unless you have a million-trillion dollars. Then have your people call my people, and take me to lunch, for starters. Tex-mex, obvs.

And a giveaway!

So since the nice people over at Redmond decided to send me some awesome free stuff, they also wanted to offer a giveaway to my readers, too. We’re giving away this nice little organic seasoning gift box with all of my faves. And, BONUS: there are FOUR winners. Shazam!

Screenshot 2014-07-21 15.57.10

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Disclosure: Redmond sponsored this post and giveaway because they are awesome, I am awesome, and so are you. And that’s how we roll around here. Giveaway ends in a week and is only open to the USA. PS. Spread some happy today, okay?

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Comments

  1. says

    I’m with you on preferring the salty over the sweet! And on not worrying much about seasoning with salt when you’re eating fresh foods anyway. I’m going to look into Redmond salts– thanks for the recommendation :-)

  2. Shelby says

    My college health teacher told us salt is not bad for you unless you have a pre-existing condition…..the government found this out after they had spent the money on the anti-salt campaign…so they went forward with the campaign anyway….not shocking…I never limit salt and have not had any problems.

  3. says

    I love salt! The pink Himalayan stuff from mountain rose herbs is pretty fab. My two year old is always asking for a pinch of salt ;-)

    I think it’s in the sermon on the mount that Jesus asks what salt is good for if it loses its saltiness; one of my friends said “wow, Morton’s was prophesied by Jesus!” Lol.
    Real salt is so much yummier ;-)

  4. says

    Great post! It’s so good to see people talking about these commonly misrepresented topics. I remember hearing somewhere that where our society currently is in regards to nutrition research is the equivalent of where they were in medicine in medieval times because nutrition is such a new field comparatively. That’s why information is always changing. Though just last week I read another great article about how salt is good for you as long as it’s natural real salt. At my house we use the pink Himalayan salt.

  5. says

    I agree that the ever-changing ideas about what the government deems healthy vs. unhealthy is frustrating. I also agree with you about Redmond’s Real Salt. I haven’t tried any of the other flavors, though, so I really appreciate the chance to win. Thanks for the post and the opportunity!

  6. belle says

    Yay! It’s nice to see someone sharing their knowledge on a topic that I’m such a newbie to…. but amen sista’ on the whole not trusting the “nutritional experts”! What ever! I knew when “they” started preaching that eggs were bad for you something wasn’t right! God wouldn’t make something for us to eat that wasn’t good for us?!?!?! C’mon!

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