ie. will it be really harmful if I use a stock cube in cooking? How obscessiveanal do I have to be about reading supermarket labels? Is it possible to feed a young baby family foods and still have a life?
Is a tiny amount of salt really going hurt my gorgeous daughter?
I realise a low salt diet is good for all the family, but there is hidden salt in so many foods.
If I were you I would use very low salt stock cubes if you're going to let DD eat your food and don't add any salt. We use the Kallo ones (waitrose and big Sainsburys sell them) and you still get flavour without salt. I think this is one of the things you do have to be more careful with....a small amount of salt can harm a baby, especially if eaten regularly. I think when they get to 12 months you can relax slightly but at 6 months, she's so, so young and I don't think it's worth taking the risk.
You do have to be a bit anal in the early days, what got me through it was learning to make things from scratch (like macaroni cheese from your own white sauce rather than using a packet sauce mix); making my own bread with a breadmaker (as TPO said, bought-bread contains lots of salt); boots baby stock cubes, and also learning what herbs/spices you can add to different foods to make them tasty.
Too much salt on a regular basis can kill a small baby (or indeed, an older child). It is pretty rare - there was a tragic case a few years back, where I think they'd fed the baby nothing much apart from ready brek - but you do need to be careful.
If you use herbs and low salt stock cubes, you can make tasty meals for all the family.
M&S also sell no-salt spice packs for curries - haven't tried them yet, but bought some yesterday and they are on special offer in our local M&S at the mo.
Waitrose make an organic curry powder that has no salt added.
I'm only just getting started on BLW so am still discovering hidden salt - I added worcestershire sauce to shepherd's pie without thinking. But as a one-off, my understanding is that a little bit of salt won't be a problem. It's the day-in, day-out over-salting you need to be very careful about.
Hope that helps. I can share some of my recipes if that would help - we have got a nice bolognese worked out now .
It's not too hard. A 6-12 month old baby should have no more than 1g of salt per day - I just tend to avoid processed foods and if I ever do use them then I look at the amount of salt per portion to see how much DS could have of a portion being safe. For example one day I was going to give him some fish fingers but when I checked the packet I decided to only give him one. At the beginning they eat such small amounts that unless you use a lot of jar sauces and packet mixes you are unlikely to overdose them by accident.
I bought baby stock cubes from Boots and use them instead of my usual ones, or you can buy liquid stock or make your own stock if the baby ones aren't flavourful enough (liquid stock fairly expensive but much lower in salt than cubes)
Then I just found recipes to make things from scratch rather than using jar sauces - I don't use them a lot anyway so it was quite easy but I found it quite fun for the few that I did. I also discovered that a squirt of lime juice brings out flavours like salt does, without adding salt, which is really useful.