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Salt question

smokeymose

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Good afternoon!
My wife just came home today from a stay in the hospital for a cardiac "incident".
She's fine, but we were told she needs to restrict her sodium intake to 2000 mg a day. Unfortunately my sausage recipes use a good deal of salt (5 tsp for Sweet Italian, 2 1/2 tbls for Kielbasa, 5 tsp for Hot Italian and 2 1/2 tbls for Kosher Style Beef). This is way too much.
I can cut back on the salt in the mix but I don't think I can totally eliminate it (or can I?). According to the cardiologist even a little is too much.
Is there a zero sodium salt substitute I can use? If we have to give up sausage we will but if there's an alternative I'd love to hear it...
Dan
 

TNJAKE

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I don't have any advice. Just wanted to stop by and say glad your wife is ok!
 

DanMcG

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Like Jake said, I'm glad she is out and ok.
You can't totally eliminate the salt, but you can cut back. and remember sodium is only 40% of salt, the rest is chloride .
what type of salt do you use? I bet we can work it down and still taste good.
Can she have msg?
 

tx smoker

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I'm not an expert by any means so can only share our experience with salt. Several years ago I decided to cut WAY back on salt intake and found ways to make food taste good without using standard iodized table salt. Some things however just need some salt....like sausage. We switched to Pink Himalayan Sea salt for table use and pure Kosher salt for everything else. When I had blood work done a couple months ago the doctor said my sodium level had dropped dramatically, and was actually a bit low. I can't say for sure that the changes in what we use for salt made the difference but it may be worth looking into. As others have said, very happy to hear that your wife is doing well.

Robert
 

smokeymose

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Like Jake said, I'm glad she is out and ok.
You can't totally eliminate the salt, but you can cut back. and remember sodium is only 40% of salt, the rest is chloride .
what type of salt do you use? I bet we can work it down and still taste good.
Can she have msg?
I use Morton kosher salt in sausage. I've been using a touch of Accent in my beef sausage to kick it up a little and if I'm not mistaken it is mainly MSG but I didn't think to ask the doctor about it.
 

smokeymose

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I'm not an expert by any means so can only share our experience with salt. Several years ago I decided to cut WAY back on salt intake and found ways to make food taste good without using standard iodized table salt. Some things however just need some salt....like sausage. We switched to Pink Himalayan Sea salt for table use and pure Kosher salt for everything else. When I had blood work done a couple months ago the doctor said my sodium level had dropped dramatically, and was actually a bit low. I can't say for sure that the changes in what we use for salt made the difference but it may be worth looking into. As others have said, very happy to hear that your wife is doing well.

Robert
Thanks TX. The doctor was clear that "Salt is salt, no matter what kind or color." He said getting rid of the salt shaker is the best way to cut back (The Mrs was really liberal with the salt shaker!). Maybe that was part of your solution?
I've been reading labels a lot the last couple of days and almost EVERYTHING has at least some sodium if not a lot...
 

SmokinGame

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Good afternoon!
My wife just came home today from a stay in the hospital for a cardiac "incident".
She's fine, but we were told she needs to restrict her sodium intake to 2000 mg a day.
Dan, so glad she is okay. My prayers for you and your wife.

I can really understand. Last June 1 my wife suffered a severe cardiac incident requiring use of the paddles and an triple bypass. It really has been an adjustment. Sorry but I have no experience with salt options in sausage. It definitely has resulted in a change to our the rubs I use.
 

DanMcG

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The problem with sausage is ya need the salt to develop the myosin but you can cut back on it and still get a good product.
You didn't mention how many pounds of sausage you were making with the amounts of salt you listed in the original post. I'm guessing 5 lbs?
 

thirdeye

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Here are a few tips.... Learn how to read product labels, they are sneaky, really sneaky. This will help a LOT. Processed food can slip salt into your diet during the day without you actually knowing it. For example a single jumbo green olive (as in one) can have 150 mg of sodium, but one cocktail onion might only have 30 mg of sodium. Something as innocent as lemon pepper.... has salt as an ingredient, in fact it might have 200 mg in a 1/4 teaspoon.

So here is the deal.... It's possible to replace some salt with flavor. For example, there is a product called 'Complete Seasoning' made by Badia that only has 90 mg of salt in a 1/4 teaspoon (which goes a long way in your daily cooking). It's actually pretty good as a table seasoning. I like a sprinkle in scrambled eggs, on cottage cheese, or some vegetables.

For a rub, you can play around with these proportions, but you could come up with a cooking seasoning that is flavorful, but without salt. Try a batch using teaspoons instead of tablespoons and give this ratio a try:

No Salt Rub
3 tablespoons paprika
1 tablespoon onion powder
1 tablespoon garlic powder
1 tablespoon ground basil
1 tablespoon black pepper
1 tablespoon red pepper
1 tablespoon mustard powder

On the sausage, if you convert your sausage recipes to percentages you can dial down the salt (2%, 1.7%, 1.5 % etc) in small steps until you can't stand going any lower. Then limit the amount of sausage to eat.

Check out this Real Salt website, and take the information with a grain of salt .
Uh, I mean take the information for what's it's worth as these guys make some medical claims about their product.

 

bill1

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I'm with 3rdEye on the "other flavor" substitutes, esp if your wife is ok with a little heat...
  • I put the pepper in the shaker with the big holes and salt in the other.
  • Fresh jalapenos are dirt cheap. Slice them up fine and they give a nice flavor to food that without salt would be bland. (Addendum...wash your hands after cutting them...you don't want to accidentally rub your eyes after cutting peppers!)
I'll leave it to the sausage experts on the substitutes there. But even if you cut not a whit on the salt content, if your portions are half the size, then you've reduced your Na intake by 50%...that's a lot by medical standards. Portion control is a huge part of any healthy diet change...and it's not really suffering.
 

SmokinEdge

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Happy the wife is ok.
That said, what percent of salt are you using? I use 1.5% and that is the minimum recommended in sausage making. Fresh sausage you could go lower. Just thinking food safety, and yes , sodium is required. Will help all I can. Prayers and best wishes.
 

smokeymose

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The problem with sausage is ya need the salt to develop the myosin but you can cut back on it and still get a good product.
You didn't mention how many pounds of sausage you were making with the amounts of salt you listed in the original post. I'm guessing 5 lbs?
Yes, 5# batches. By the way thank you for your concern...
 

smokeymose

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Dan, so glad she is okay. My prayers for you and your wife.

I can really understand. Last June 1 my wife suffered a severe cardiac incident requiring use of the paddles and an triple bypass. It really has been an adjustment. Sorry but I have no experience with salt options in sausage. It definitely has resulted in a change to our the rubs I use.
Thankfully her incident wasn't that severe. Thank you.
Rubs and sauces are going to go through some changes....
 

smokeymose

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Here are a few tips.... Learn how to read product labels, they are sneaky, really sneaky. This will help a LOT. Processed food can slip salt into your diet during the day without you actually knowing it. For example a single jumbo green olive (as in one) can have 150 mg of sodium, but one cocktail onion might only have 30 mg of sodium. Something as innocent as lemon pepper.... has salt as an ingredient, in fact it might have 200 mg in a 1/4 teaspoon.

So here is the deal.... It's possible to replace some salt with flavor. For example, there is a product called 'Complete Seasoning' made by Badia that only has 90 mg of salt in a 1/4 teaspoon (which goes a long way in your daily cooking). It's actually pretty good as a table seasoning. I like a sprinkle in scrambled eggs, on cottage cheese, or some vegetables.

For a rub, you can play around with these proportions, but you could come up with a cooking seasoning that is flavorful, but without salt. Try a batch using teaspoons instead of tablespoons and give this ratio a try:

No Salt Rub
3 tablespoons paprika
1 tablespoon onion powder
1 tablespoon garlic powder
1 tablespoon ground basil
1 tablespoon black pepper
1 tablespoon red pepper
1 tablespoon mustard powder

On the sausage, if you convert your sausage recipes to percentages you can dial down the salt (2%, 1.7%, 1.5 % etc) in small steps until you can't stand going any lower. Then limit the amount of sausage to eat.

Check out this Real Salt website, and take the information with a grain of salt .
Uh, I mean take the information for what's it's worth as these guys make some medical claims about their product.

Yeah, I've been reading labels a lot. It's amazing how much (or little) sodium is in food.
I'll check these products out.
 

SWFLsmkr1

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Happy to hear she is doing good.

I have used these in place of salt in some sausage for a family member.

Mortons salt substitute
My salt
Nu salt
No salt

Any of them are good and cut the regular salt way way down.
 

smokeymose

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I'm with 3rdEye on the "other flavor" substitutes, esp if your wife is ok with a little heat...
  • I put the pepper in the shaker with the big holes and salt in the other.
  • Fresh jalapenos are dirt cheap. Slice them up fine and they give a nice flavor to food that without salt would be bland. (Addendum...wash your hands after cutting them...you don't want to accidentally rub your eyes after cutting peppers!)
I'll leave it to the sausage experts on the substitutes there. But even if you cut not a whit on the salt content, if your portions are half the size, then you've reduced your Na intake by 50%...that's a lot by medical standards. Portion control is a huge part of any healthy diet change...and it's not really suffering.
Hate to say that we've both had to cut back on the heat the last few years.
When I use hot peppers I wear nitriles. I learned that lesson years ago LOL!
Thank you.
 

smokeymose

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Happy to hear she is doing good.

I have used these in place of salt in some sausage for a family member.

Mortons salt substitute
My salt
Nu salt
No salt

Any of them are good and cut the regular salt way way down.
Thanks SFL.
I picked up some NU-Salt and some of the Morton's yesterday for her (and me) to use as table salt.
I was curious to know if I can use them in sausage. Hopefully I can find them in something larger than salt shaker size.
 

smokeymose

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Happy the wife is ok.
That said, what percent of salt are you using? I use 1.5% and that is the minimum recommended in sausage making. Fresh sausage you could go lower. Just thinking food safety, and yes , sodium is required. Will help all I can. Prayers and best wishes.
I'm not big on percentages, but I'm sure I could cut back some. I only do fresh now but I've been using #1 cure anyway. I guess I really don't need to but I like the safety standpoint. I don't know how much of a difference 1 tsp of cure in 5# makes but I'll be nixing it.
Thank you.
 

SmokinEdge

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I'm not big on percentages, but I'm sure I could cut back some. I only do fresh now but I've been using #1 cure anyway. I guess I really don't need to but I like the safety standpoint. I don't know how much of a difference 1 tsp of cure in 5# makes but I'll be nixing it.
Thank you.
With all respect, you should know you’re salt percentage to Meat weight .That is a known value, and repeatable always. Learn to cook with salt as a percentage this will give you the control over taste and sodium content in your finished product. No matter if sausage or stew.
Add up the total weight of meat and or soup stock in pounds. Convert that to kg. That is 454kg per 1pound. Then multiply that by salt desired in percentage.

like this: 1 pound=454 grams. So,,,,, to obtain a certain salt percentage you would do this:
454x0.015=6.81 grams of salt per pound of whatever.. You can increase or decrease this easy. Say you want 0.1% salt:
454x 0.01=4.54 grams per pound. This is all for one pound of meat, or one pound of soup or stew including meat. This method is absolutely repeatable and gives you control on your salt.
Pickling and canning salt is a fine salt and is more dense in volume than is kosher salt. So measuring salt volumetrically will never be accurate. Weighing is accurate. The volume changes, but the salt content ( weight) is same.

I hope this helps.
 

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