07 Sep Chef AJ Talks Salt: Part 2
It takes about 30 days of abstinence from salt to neurodapt and appreciate the subtle salty flavors in whole natural plant food. As long as you keep stimulating your taste buds with salt, you will never lose your cravings for it. For those who have tried the 6 tips above and still insist that their food is not palatable without salt, I offer these suggestions as a way for them to at least decrease the amount of sodium they consume.
1) Never cook with salt. That means not only not salting your water when you cook pasta or veggies, but leaving it out of the recipe entirely. Salt, like sugar and oil, completely dissipates when you cook with it forcing you to use way more than you need to. If you absolutely must use salt, use it as the finish. Always taste your food first before salting. Then, if you must add it, do as Dr. McDougall suggests and lightly sprinkle it on the surface of your food where your taste buds can really taste it. You can also omit salt entirely in baked goods. I was the Executive Vegan Pastry Chef at Santé Restaurant in Los Angeles for years and I never used sugar, oil or salt. When a recipe called for salt I would simply omit it and it would still turn out perfectly. I also use sodium free baking powder and sodium free baking soda.
2) Instead of using salt, use products that contain salt but are much lower in sodium. My two favorite products Raw Coconut Aminos (a soy free, wheat free soy sauce with 113 mg of sodium per teaspoon ) and low sodium miso (which has 110mg of sodium per teaspoon). You can have 24 teaspoons (which is 8 tablespoons) of these products for the same amount of sodium found in a mere teaspoon of salt. And these products are so much more flavorful that you would never use that much. Both of these products can be found at Whole Foods Markets and on line. Keep in mind that low sodium soy sauce is simply regular soy sauce that has been watered down. You can save money by buying regular soy sauce and adding the water yourself.
3) Consider a fast. Dr. Alan Goldhamer of True North says that if SOS-free whole plant food doesn’t taste good to you, then you need to fast. Once you stop assaulting your taste buds with so much sugar, fat and salt, fruits and veggies become mighty tasty. If you can’t fast, try going one day eating nothing but fruits and vegetables. *Only fast at a medically supervised clinic like True North Health in Santa Rosa.
Just like human beings are the only species that drink milk after maturity and from another species, we are also the only species that salt our food. Have you ever watched a special on National Geographic where a lion kills a gazelle? Have you ever seen him salting his food? As ridiculous as this may sound, the amount of salt that most people consume on a daily basis is also ridiculous. We require only 50mg a day for bodily functions which we can easily get by eating whole plant food. Consuming excess salt raises our blood pressure and has been linked to strokes and stomach cancer.
Most of the salt we eat is hidden in foods that don’t even taste salty. There is more sodium in bread than in potato chips. Salt is insidious. It is one of four white powders that I recommend you avoid, the other three being white sugar, white flour and cocaine. When someone quits smoking they often will temporarily consume more food. Some say it is because they are no longer taking in the nicotine. Another theory is that when they smoked they were literally burning their taste buds and so the food did not taste as good. Once they stop inhaling the smoke their taste nerves regenerate and food becomes more palatable. It’s the same thing with salt. At first your food may taste bland without it. As you stop using salt your taste nerves will actually become more sensitive and you will actually be able to appreciate the flavors in whole natural plant food. So why not do a little experiment and see if you can ditch the salt shaker for a few weeks? Your arteries will surely thank you.