September 12, 2012

Joy Bauer and Low-Sodium Lo Mein

When it comes to healthy eating, do you know who’s the boss?

Joy Bauer.

This little package of high energy and healthy eating advice knows the ins and outs of the foods we love to eat. And in her new series, “What the Heck,” made in partnership with Everyday Health, she’s exposing the good, the bad, and the better choices. From fro yo to hot dogs.

While her videos are not salt-intake specific, you’ll be surprised how often sodium makes an appearance. And how much of it ends up in processed foods. Plus, it never hurts to brush up on other dietary info. It makes for great cocktail conversation.

As for my favorites, I love her Healthy Chinese Food episode in which she gives a little history lesson on everything from beef and broccoli to orange beef, as well the hard to swallow truth about the ingredients — a single takeout dinner able to add up to more sodium than your body needs in TWO FULL DAYS. Yikers.

Now that Joy’s schooled us on what to avoid, let me show you what we can go Kung Pao crazy about.

Inspired by Joy’s amazing video, I made my own low-sodium (and low budget) movie on how to make a Low-Sodium Lo Mein that will have any Chinese food connoisseurs asking for seconds.

The trick to making this dish super healthy is replacing half of the noodles with zucchini ribbons as well as replacing that high sodium soy sauce with my favorite salt-free substitute: umami sauce (recipe at the end of this awesome post).

So the next time you are craving your favorite comfort foods, I highly recommend checking out Joy’s videos for some enlightening entertainment as well as inspiration for at-home healthy makeovers.

And remember, whether you’re talking Chinese or hot sauce, it’s easy to cut down (or even remove) the uber overload of sodium, sugar, calories, and carbohydrates. Just get to your stove, get creative, and get cooking.

And chow on.



  • 2 teaspoons unseasoned rice wine vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
  • 1 teaspoon molasses
  • 1/2 teaspoon brown sugar
  • 1/4 of salt-free garlic powder
  • sprinkle of red pepper flakes or cayenne pepper
  • 3/4 cup water
  • optional: 2 teaspoons plum jam or orange marmalade


In a small bowl, mix all the ingredients with a whisk until well combined.

LiztheChef September 12, 2012 at 12:08 pm

Brilliant! We gave up take-out and restaurant Chinese after my husband’s heart attack. I am going to dust off my wok and get cooking. Thanks for the inspiration.

Laura September 12, 2012 at 2:26 pm

Love this! While half our family loves chinese take out, our son’s soy allergy & my gluten and sodium sensitivity makes it difficult. Will try this for a dinner we can all enjoy.

kate September 12, 2012 at 5:24 pm

What were the white noodles called? I can’t do sesamea, so I’ll add prob. Olive oil instead.

Desi September 14, 2012 at 3:31 pm

OMGosh!!! I love these videos!!! Thank you sooooo much. I am on a 200-300 mgs per day sodium diet, but preferably no sodium, so these recipes are great!!!

Andy September 15, 2012 at 7:17 pm

I liked the video that you made one minor suggestion is to lower the volume of the music as it was a little distracting while trying to listen to you talk. Do you have the full recipe on how to prepare your lo mein? Thanks for the hard work!!

Mark October 2, 2012 at 8:50 am

Looks great. I just made some egg rolls the other day with a filling similar to this one. Very impressive for not even using soy sauce. I would need to turn up the heat though. A little Sriracha or some chili peppers in the mix could do it for me. Sweet and spicy! Thanks for the recipe.

Jennifer Le October 19, 2012 at 10:31 pm

awesome! I’ve been trying to lower my sodium intake. your blog is great. going to try some of the recipes for sure!

– Jenn

Robert Ferrari October 22, 2012 at 1:29 pm

That sounds delicious, thanks for the suggestion!

Cynthia March 27, 2013 at 7:40 am

Thank you for your website! Just recently found out that I have to cut back on sodium and I’m not a good cook to begin with (according to my kids) so this is great – I’m looking forward to trying out your recipes!

Christina April 19, 2013 at 7:54 am

I love Chinese food but I don’t get to eat it often because of the sodium content. I have high blood pressure. I can’t wait to try this recipe. Thanks.

Lauren July 30, 2013 at 9:21 pm

Looks good! But, do you have an ingredient list or recipe?

Karen August 12, 2013 at 1:13 pm

I’ve not eaten chinese food for a number of years because the monosodium glutamate content always triggered a migraine attack, however after reading your recipe for low sodium umami sauce it’s given me an excuse to once again try chinese food.

KarenR November 9, 2013 at 2:09 pm

If made ahead of time, how long can the sauce last in the fridge?

catherine dunbar January 8, 2014 at 9:01 am

I desperately need to know where can I eat out for 3 days no or low sodium food. I can not take my direitics because I am full of fluid and have to be right near a bathroom with a large supply of Depends.

Diana December 19, 2015 at 7:06 pm

Hi, unfortunately the video links no longer connect. Is there any possibility the lo mein recipe og making available?

Karren buck March 23, 2016 at 6:29 pm

Low sodium lo mein

Leave a Comment

Previous post:

Next post: