Monday, January 2, 2012

One Stroky’s Journey: One potato, two potato

Wendy’s baked potato, a newly discovered low-sodium treat, eliminates any temptation presented by Walter’s fries and cheeseburger lurking nearby.

Following my stroke of April 22, 2011, my doctor issued an edict that put a serious dent in my addiction to fast food – no more than 1500 milligrams of sodium per day.

After going online to ferret out sodium content of favorite fast-food items, I came to the conclusion that my fast-food days were over. In fact, eating out anywhere seemed to be a chancy proposition. I was serious about going low sodium.

My stroke was a hemorrhagic stroke, described by the National Stroke Association’s Web site as caused by a hemorrhage, the breakage or "blowout" of a blood vessel in the brain. According to the NSA, “Hemorrhages can be caused by a number of disorders which affect the blood vessels, including long-standing high blood pressure and cerebral aneurysms.”

Although my blood pressure in recent years fluctuated, it was usually about 120/70. I never quite pinned any of the physicians down on the exact cause of my stroke.

I do know, however, that ever since, if I veer off the low-sodium course, my blood pressure soars. I am definitely motivated to stay on course. Travel and holidays are a challenge, though. That’s why discovering Wendy’s baked potato has been great. The generous-sized spuds give me a quick, convenient and fairly healthy option on the road. Plus, one individual tub of margarine at 30 mg and sour cream at 15 to 25 mg doesn't add excessive sodium but does add a taste of festivity and makes the simple and satisfying meal into an event for me.

New Year’s Eve day, hubby and I enjoyed a visit to our favorite coffee shop made even more enjoyable thanks to a Christmas gift card from our children. Then we took the scenic beach drive west on U.S. 90. We stopped for lunch at a Wendy’s. With my baked potato lunch, a sunny view of the Mississippi Sound, and the company of my favorite traveling companion, life was good, a relaxed and enjoyable close to an eventful 2011!


  1. Happy New Year to you and Walter! I hope it will be a good one for both of you.

    I haven't tried Wendy's potatoes yet, but I've admired them from afar...I usually just order chili at Wendy's.

  2. I admire your devotion to a low salt diet. I sure wish there was a Wendys handy. I rarely eat fast food unless it is Subway. Just too darn many calories.
    Thanks for the reminder. I need to watch salt also.

  3. we started low sodium a year ago and found it makes us feel better, and now when we eat something with salt in it we don't like it. but we do eat fast food once every 6 weeks, one time.

  4. A great tip. I am a baked potato fan so I will enjoy them more. I had a baked sweet potato yesterday. A wonderful meal. Happy to see you back at your post. Dianne

  5. Sometimes when Hubby and I are hungry and just don't know what to eat, we usually end up with a baked potato. Its really satisfying. We haven't eaten at Wendy's for quite some time. Thanks for the tip.
    Wishing you the best in 2012 and continued healing.