By Bob Aronson
Tired of paying for expensive prescription drugs? Sick to death of the high cost of health care? Frustrated with trying to find affordable insurance that actually covers something? Upset because your employer doesn’t offer insurance?
There is a solution…at least a partial solution and that is to take better care of yourself. Mos of our ills are brought on by our lifestyles by the fact that we eat wrong, don’t exercise and abuse our bodies in a million other ways.
Sugar is not healthy. We know that products loaded with sugar are not healthy and we know that foods with saturated fat are not healthy but we eat them anyway. Why is that? Simple answer. They are fast, easy and they really taste good!
The rap on eating healthy is that really healthy stuff usually doesn’t taste very good. Let’s face it, when you take away the salt, fat and sugar food can be pretty bland. The taste buds send frantic messages to the brain pleading for relief, “C’mon…just a little more salt…blechhh this tastes awful.”
What we are really saying is that compared to what we have been eating a healthier diet has no taste at all. The fact is the taste of healthier foods is quite distinct, it’s just that all that salt, sugar and fat have masked it and your taste buds need some retraining.
Years ago when I was first told that I might need a heart transplant some day and that I had to change my diet if I wanted to live long enough to get one I was advised to severely limit the amount of sodium in my diet. At the most I could have 2,000 milligrams (2 grams} of sodium per day. When you consider that a Papa John’s 14 inch Pepperoni Pizza with original crust has 825 mgs of sodium per slice and you rarely eat just one slice, you could easily consume your entire day’s allocation of sodium at one sitting.
I used to love salt and still do but I have learned to restrain myself. I was one of those guys who salted everything even before I tasted it. I would put salt on a sausage, pepperoni and extra cheese pizza as soon as it arrived at the table. I used to put salt in my beer, too, so when I could no longer do that all my favorite foods suddenly tasted terrible. That’s when a huge neon sign appeared over my head flashing the message, “It wasn’t the pIzza you loved, it was the salt!” Wanting to live a little longer I took the advice of my physicians and I cut salt intake in two ways. First I did not add salt to anything. Secondly I began to study the labels on food in the grocery store. Limiting yourself to 2 grams of sodium a day is very difficult and for a while you will not like what you are eating – it tastes bland. your taste buds will scream for salt as loudly as a heroin addicts brain screams for narcotic relief. Slowly, though, your taste buds recover from a decades long carpet bombing of sodium … and the real taste of food begins to emerge. Green beans have a distinct taste; pasta, has a taste of its own; even a good lean steak has a unique taste when you remove the salt and the steak sauce and the ketchup, too…sorry.
Don’t get me wrong, we need salt to keep our bodies functioning properly but, we don’t need much (e.g., between about 180 mg and 500 mg per day).
According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control (CDC) The Institute of Medicine recommends 1500 mg of sodium per day as the Adequate Intake level for most Americans and advises everyone to limit sodium intake to less than 2300 mg per day, the Tolerable Upper Limit.
Once you overcome the taste issue you will begin to enjoy food again. But you don’t have to do it cold turkey. There are plenty of good substitutes for salt that add a dash of extra flavor without being a threat to your health. For example
Here’s some advice from the famed Cleveland Clinic
Ideally, the best way to go is completely “Salt Free.” Instead of mimicking the taste of sodium with salt substitutes, start experimenting with other more flavorful herbs and spices to add zest to your meals. Try fresh garlic or garlic powder, lemon juice, flavored vinegar, salt-free herb blends, cumin, nutmeg, cinnamon, fresh ground pepper, tarragon, oregano and many others to unleash the powerful flavors these salt-free herbs and spices have to offer.
Remember that a 2 gram sodium restriction includes the total sodium in your day – this includes the foods that you eat, not just the seasoning that you add. Be cautious of nutrition labels and keep foods under 140 mg or less which is considered a “low sodium food”.
Another reason for our poor eating habits is lack of time. Everyone seems rushed with no time to be considering sodium, saturated fat or sugar content. We just need something fast – but fast doesn’t have to mean unhealthy.
“Sometimes cooking takes a lot of time in our life, but we got some good news for you. We gathered an excellent list of cooking recipes which are easy to prepare. There are categories of receipts like Breakfast, Salad Entrees, Soups, Fish, Chicken and Turkey, Lean Meat, Vegetarian Entrees, Side Salad/Dressings, Side Vegetables, and Desserts. All easy healthy foods so you don’t even need to think about what to cook tonight!”
[Update: Try this lifehack article for an updated List of 100 healthy recipes that you can learn in 15 minutes ]
Or…for great and flavorful healthy food ideas go directly to Recipesia dot com.
Chicken and Turkey
Got some ideas for healthier living? We’d like to hear them. Please add your comments here or write to me directly firstname.lastname@example.org if you have a blog idea or if you’d like to submit a guest blog. Stay tuned for more on living healthy. One way of solving the transplantable organ shortage is by reducing the demand. By living healthy you do just that.-0-
Bob Aronson of Bob’s Newheart is a 2007 heart transplant recipient, the founder of Facebook’s nearly 3,000 member Organ Transplant Initiative and the author of most of these donation/transplantation blogs.
You may comment in the space provided or email your thoughts to me at email@example.com. And – please spread the word about the immediate need for more organ donors. There is nothing you can do that is of greater importance. If you convince one person to be an organ and tissue donor you may save or positively affect over 60 lives. Some of those lives may be people you know and love.
Please view our new music video “Dawn Anita The Gift of Life” on YouTube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eYFFJoHJwHs . This video is free to anyone who wants to use it and no permission is needed.
If you want to spread the word personally about organ donation, we have another PowerPoint slide show for your use free and without permission. Just go to http://www.organti.org and click on “Life Pass It On” on the left side of the screen and then just follow the directions. This is NOT a stand-alone show; it needs a presenter but is professionally produced and factually sound. If you decide to use the show I will send you a free copy of my e-book, “How to Get a Standing “O” that will help you with presentation skills. Just write to firstname.lastname@example.org and usually you will get a copy the same day.
Also…there is more information on this blog site about other donation/transplantation issues. Additionally we would love to have you join our Facebook group, Organ Transplant Initiative The more members we get the greater our clout with decision makers.
Puede comentar en el espacio proporcionado o por correo electrónico sus pensamientos a mí en email@example.com. Y – por favor, difundir la palabra acerca de la necesidad inmediata de más donantes de órganos. No hay nada que puedas hacer lo que es de mayor importancia. Si usted convence a una persona de ser donante de órganos y tejidos puede salvar o afectar positivamente a más de 60 vidas. Algunas de esas vidas pueden ser personas que conoces y amas.
Por favor, consulte nuestro nuevo video musical “Dawn Anita The Gift of Life” en https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eYFFJoHJwHs YouTube. Este video es libre para cualquier persona que quiera usarlo y no se necesita permiso.
Si quieres correr la voz acerca de la donación de órganos personalmente, tenemos otra presentación de PowerPoint para su uso libre y sin permiso. Sólo tienes que ir a http://www.organti.org y haga clic en “Life Pass It On” en el lado izquierdo de la pantalla y luego sólo tienes que seguir las instrucciones. Esto no es un espectáculo independiente, sino que necesita un presentador pero es profesionalmente producida y sonido hechos. Si usted decide usar el programa le enviaré una copia gratuita de mi libro electrónico, “Cómo obtener un pie” O “que le ayudará con habilidades de presentación. Sólo tiene que escribir a firstname.lastname@example.org y por lo general usted recibirá una copia del mismo día.
Además … hay más información sobre este sitio de blogs sobre otros donación / trasplante temas. Además nos encantaría que te unas a nuestro grupo de Facebook, la Iniciativa de Trasplante de Órganos Cuantos más miembros que obtenemos mayor será nuestra influencia con los tomadores de decisiones.