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New to the world of professional level cooking

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 

Hello all:


My name is David Lloyd.  I am new to the world of professional level cooking.  I have been thrust into the role unexpectedly due to some unexpected dietary changes that have made cooking/baking nearly every single item on the table, from base condiments up to the main course through desserts a necessity. 


Due to a medical condition, I have been thrown several curve balls that make cooking meals very interesting.  NO added sugar, NO added salt or any form of sodium (<= 500 sodium mg /day intake TOTAL, 1000mg absolute maximum, no potassium substitutes), LOW fat cooking (no saturated fats like butter or shortening), and to complete the round of healthy eating, very low cholesterol (i.e. eggs are gone).


With all those curve balls to deal with and after doing quite a lot of research, I have discovered that there are virtually no commercially available items that satisfy those conditions outside of basic cooking/baking staples to assist with daily cooking and meal planning, so I am learning the hard way.


Any assistance on maintaining a properly stocked pantry and weekly meal planning for family of 4, including 2 teenagers, on this type of diet will be much appreciated.


Thanks in advance for answers to what will likely be some very simple questions to start with.



post #2 of 5

There are plenty of low fat/healthy cooking cook books & magazines on the shelf, look around it's not as hard as you think.

Read every label, a can of soup can have ^1000 mg sodium, eat lots of roasted chicken, grilled lean meats, fish, salads, steamed, roasted veggies, use lots of herbs & seasonings in your food to make up for the sodium, make your own salad dressings, etc, etc.

Learn to bake with sugar substitutes, IE: splenda, stevia, agave nectar. Why no salt substitutes? Why are you wanting to make all the condiments?

I was diagnosed with T2 diabetes & heart failure five years ago, I had to make a HUGE lifestyle change, in the process lost close to 100 lbs..

I have eased up on my restrictions on occasion and endulge when I get the urge, but I would rather have a very small portion of something good, the real deal, than to have a large quantity of some imitation crap  with 0 carbs, sugar, sodium, taste.

post #3 of 5

Firstly, you are not going on a diet.

Diets are temporary and what you are about to do is a complete life style change.

You are correct, in that there are no commercially available products to aid in you food choices, but that doesn't mean they are off limits.


Your knowledge of Cholesterol needs some updating. Egg yolks for example are no longer considered the bad thing they used to be.

Your descriptions lead me to believe you are either a diabetic now or are having heart problems.


When you did research, I'm sure you found that:

eating lean red meat sparingly, is good

incorporating more fresh vegetables

Limiting alcohol

eating more beans, nuts, and fruits

Cook with Olive oil instead of butter

And, of course, get lots of rest and exercise daily.

All of the food changes mean nothing without the exercise.   Good luck

post #4 of 5
Thread Starter 

You are correct on both accounts.  The no-salt-substitutes are due to potassium and interactions with my medications.  As far as condiments go, you would be amazed how much sodium is in some of the basics.  Just mustard alone, in just mustard alone, what would typically be added to a dish would add as much as 150mg to 300mg sodium to the dish.  When you are limited to 500mg TOTAL per day, that's alot.  There are some out there I can find, but it would be more trouble and money than it's worth to constantly order off of web sites, etc.  I would rather make my own.  With as much cooking as I am now doing and am going to be doing, might as well.  Better flavor anyway.

post #5 of 5
Thread Starter 

Thank you for your reply, you are correct on all accounts.  I am doing all the above you mentioned.  Limiting red meats, and learning to cook with substitutes and LOTS of spices.

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