Salt, although essential for the proper functioning of the body, can be dangerous when consumed in too large quantities. To raise its dishes, without using salt, therefore, there are tasty natural alternatives.
“A large number of people have adopted the very bad reflex of salting without even having tasted the food, and this is a habit to change,” says Marie Anne Talleux, nutritionist and head of development of the Nutrition Health Care program at WW.
“While the PNNS (National Nutrition and Health Program), recommends not to consume more than 5 g of salt per day, it has been shown that the French used to consume between 6 and 8 g”, illustrates the nutrition expert.
result? Risks of developing high blood pressure and cardiovascular diseases as well as other diseases such as stomach cancer or greater fragility of the bones. In short, so many good reasons to have a regulated consumption of this natural and marine treasure.
Alternatives to salt to adopt
To eat “less salty”, there are therefore alternatives that allow enhancing the dishes. There is no question here of “substitute salt or dietary salt without sodium” which are only consumed within the framework of very specific diets, “to treat pathologies, and on medical prescription”.
Here, it is, therefore, a question of taste, first of all, but also benefits.
For example, let’s start with the gomasio, a blend of grilled sesame and salt (which Top Chef contestants love).
soy sauce is probably the best-known alternative. Be careful, however, it is excessively salty! It should not be abused – and above all, not salted over it. There are commercially less salty soy sauces, but still to be used sparingly.
Same with the salt of celery, which is similar to gomasio or mixtures of aromatic herbs and salt. There is 80 to 90% salt and 10% celery. Its use reduces salt consumption in a very limited way, but it brings a different note to season your dishes. And your tomato juices.
Others are attempting to use carbonated water, especially to cook pasta or rice without adding salt. But according to our nutrition expert, the taste is not pronounced enough and in this case, “it is, in this case, better to reduce the pinches of salt that we usually put in our water, it is a much more effective method”.
There are also flavored salts: with algae, therefore, but also with aromatic herbs, etc., which can allow salt enthusiasts to revise their dosage downwards.
Other flavor enhancers to saltless
Subterfuges can also be used to enhance tastes and seasonings, without resorting to salt.
the Herbs, and in particular the basil the parsley, or the mint, which can also bring flavor to your dishes and exhauster the taste while adding a touch of freshness.
the Spices, such as thesecondTheonion or shallot, which are ideal for accompanying meats or vegetables. They are, in addition to this, filled with health benefits (antioxidant properties and diuretic action).
The juices of citrus fruits, and in particular that of lemon which is more acidic than the others, will be perfect for a dressing base or marinade. In addition, lemon juice is recommended for its antioxidant properties, its benefits on the immune system, and digestion.
Vinegar is also a very good alternative, whether it is sherry vinegar, balsamic, apple cider vinegar (very good for the heart, regeneration of cells and the nervous system), wine … For example, in a tomato sauce, they will replace salt very well. the apple cider vinegar will not be elsewhere perfect to perfume the water of the pasta or the water of the rice.
Finally, lit spices will know how to raise a dish, and therefore replace the salt in an ideal way. Whether it is the curry, which easily accompanies any dish, the paprika, or the cinnamon, spices can only have a positive effect on your body thanks to their antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, antispasmodic and antibacterial properties. Among these spices, Marie Anne Talleux indicates that the chili pepper is particularly recommended for its strong and pronounced taste that will easily replace your salt cravings.
Should we eat “without salt”?
However, there is no question of completely do without salt. Adopt a salt-free diet or low in salt is not recommended when it is not on the prescription of a doctor and as part of a very particular treatment. “Stopping salt completely can expose to risks of dehydration,” warns Marie Anne Talleux.
It is often forgotten that it is an essential food for our body. “The sodium and chloride that make up the salt are minerals which participate for example in the transmission of nerve signals or muscle contraction,” she adds.
Moreover, “when you want to avoid excess salt and start reducing the doses in your diet, it is better to go gradually”, she advises. Otherwise, the food seems too bland and it would be a shame to lose the pleasure of eating.”
Before talking about the alternatives to salt that can enhance our dishes, the nutrition expert recommends taking into account the salt content of the foods purchased, including prepared meals. “You have to learn how to decipher labels,” she advises. In supermarkets, there are a large number of products that are very heavy in salt, such as Delete Cheese, ready meals, cube broths, rusks, pain… We easily arrive at the recommended 5 g.”
To conclude, therefore, we do not eradicate the salt from our diet but, we try to remain reasonable in its consumption, even if it means using alternatives to salt less while keeping pleasure. To your taste buds!