Avoid artificial trans fats, which are bad for your heart. Check the ingredients list for "partially hydrogenated" oils. Also, know that if a product says "0 grams trans fat," it may actually have up to half a gram of trans fat per serving, which can add up.
Try these tips for choosing and cooking low-fat foods:
- Choose lean cuts of meat.
- Don't fry foods. Instead, you can bake, broil, grill, roast, or boil.
- Choose low-fat or fat-free dairy products. Include them in your daily carbohydrate count.
- Use low-fat vegetable cooking spray, or consider using cholesterol-lowering margarine containing stanols or sterols.
- Use liquid vegetable oils instead of solid fats.
- Select lower-fat margarines, gravies, and salad dressings, and check the carbohydrate count on condiments and dressings.
A registered dietitian can give you more information on how to prepare and choose low-fat foods.
Diabetes makes you more likely to get high blood pressure. Too much salt can add to that risk. Your doctor or dietitian may ask you to limit or avoid:
- Salt and seasoned salt (or salt seasonings)
- Boxed mixes of potatoes, rice, and pasta
- Canned meats
- Canned soups and vegetables (with salt)
- Cured or processed foods
- Ketchup, mustard, salad dressings, other spreads, and canned sauces
- Packaged soups, gravies, and sauces
- Pickled foods
- Processed meats: lunch meat, sausage, bacon, and ham
- Salty snack foods
- Monosodium glutamate (MSG)
- Soy and steak sauces
Low-Salt Cooking Tips
- Use fresh ingredients and foods with no salt added.
- For favorite recipes, you may need to use other ingredients and eliminate or decrease the salt you would normally add.
- Try orange or pineapple juice as a base for meat marinades.
- Check the sodium on food labels.
- Choose frozen entrees that have 600 milligrams or less of sodium. Limit yourself to one of these frozen entrees per day.
- Use fresh, frozen, no-added-salt canned vegetables, or canned vegetables that have been rinsed before they are prepared.
- If you buy canned soup, look for lower-sodium products.
- Avoid mixed seasonings and spice blends that include salt, such as garlic salt.
What Seasonings Can Replace Salt?
Herbs and spices are the answer to improving the natural flavors in food without using salt. Below are some mixtures to use for meats, poultry, fish, vegetables, soups, and salads.
2 tablespoons dried savory, crumbled
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground white pepper
1 tablespoon dry mustard
1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
2 1/2 teaspoons onion powder
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon curry powder
2 teaspoons garlic powder
1 teaspoon basil
1 teaspoon oregano
1 teaspoon powdered lemon rind or dehydrated lemon juice
2 tablespoons dried dill weed or basil leaves, crumbled
1 teaspoon celery seed
2 tablespoons onion powder
1/4 teaspoon dried oregano leaves, crumbled
A pinch of freshly ground pepper
1 teaspoon cloves
1 teaspoon pepper
2 teaspoons paprika
1 teaspoon coriander seed (crushed)
1 tablespoon rosemary