Ratha (papertygre) wrote,

Salt is a dirty trick

Because of my blood pressure issue I cut out added salt. I expected a long and agonizing adaptation process. Actually I'm pretty okay with it after just a couple of days now.

What I'm amazed about is how disappointing foods taste that I used to love.

The bread I've been making from fresh home-milled flour? Tastes like cardboard with no salt. Potatoes? The same. I was cleaning out my fridge today and found two kinds of butter, salted and unsalted. The unsalted butter tasted like machine lubricant.

But plenty of things do still taste good: Homemade tomato sauce. Chickpeas. Almonds.

The reason I'm so dumbstruck by this is that I sort of knew it. In my raw animal food period about 15 years ago, I managed to obtain some unpasteurized salt-free cheese, which was recommended by a guru, and it was *unbelievably bad*. I mean the texture was perfectly fine for cheese but the flavor was so bland, the net effect was hideous. It was like eating rubber. Ever since then I sort of knew that any form of dairy without lactose was primarily pimped by the salt and/or sugar it was combined with, but I didn't let this sink in. I was happy in my innocence. I didn't really want to know.

But now I am being forced to face it: Salt tricks you into thinking a food is nutritious when it's very likely not. Holy crap, people. No fricking wonder salt is in everything. Everything.

These last few days I've been somewhat trying to follow the Joel Fuhrman "Eat to Live" protocol because as soon as I realized I needed to do this blood pressure experiment, I remembered that he had always said you need to cut out salt, but I had always thought that was too extreme. I always thought a McDougall starch-based approach was much more practical and perfectly sufficient. As soon as I came to accept, within the last week, that I needed to give up salt, I was all like "Damn, maybe Fuhrman is right after all. Maybe I should give his whole deal a fair shot." And what it seems like at this point is, all the starchy stuff I was afraid of having to cut down on isn't tasting very appealing without the cheat of salt anymore, anyway.

But I am not sure how it's going to play out because Fuhrman-compatible food doesn't actually seem to satisfy hunger. The books say it's "toxic hunger" and not real. OK fine, but I still have stomach cramps, fatigue, and headaches that I didn't have before I started down this wacky road. And it's really distracting. But, I am hopeful it might work out if I stick with it, because I was a raw vegan once (about 13 years ago). I quit that because I got tired of playing the freak, but I did manage to live on nothing but raw vegetables for a month. So I do think the "toxic hunger" might eventually go away. And it might even be a result of "detoxifying" as Fuhrman says. If I hadn't had the experience myself, before, I'd think it was a pile of horseshit for sure.

Also, today, I took a blood pressure reading with systolic in the 120s.

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