Discussions that mention atacand

Heart Disorders board

My hubby had a heart attack mid-December. He is a truck driver (owner/operator) - steel hauler. He had a stint put in immediately and started on all kinds of meds. He takes Zocor, cumidin, Atacand, ToprolXL. Aldactone (Spironolactone), Plavix, and a baby asprin daily. The Dr. said he'll only be on the cumidin for 3 months (March) and Plavix for 6 months. The rest he will probably have to stay on, except possibly the blood pressure meds since he's never had BP problems and still doesn't seem to.

He has always been a food lover and I've been after him to cut back on carbs & salt. As a truck driver, that's hard. As an absolute salt lover (with no BP problems) - that is an impossibility!!! Meat seems to be okay w/out salt because I've always used other spices and meat has it's own flavors (he absolutely would rather die - for real - than eat fish, and chicken more than twice a month is reason for divorce!). So we've cut back to very, VERY lean beef, which has gone okay.

But, now that he's finally listening to me about the over-abundance of refined carbs, he gets physically sick eating good carbs and vegies w/out salt! We found a great salt substitute, but he can't use it because the BP meds won't allow extra potassium. All the low fat stuff, which he's supposed to be using, has EXTRA salt added to make up for flavor loss, and it's worse than the regular. Soups w/no salt taste like dishwater as does tomato products (I'd have to agree with those two!). The doctor has just said he'll have to change his tastes over time, but there's problems with that..... 1) He's loosing a lot of weight fast because he's not eating - he'd eat more meat, but that's limited because of fats. He eats more raw veggies, but is quickly tiring of those and that is quickly decreasing, too. We've tried all the alternative spices but, if they don't taste like salt (which they don't, of course) he doesn't eat them. He's never liked vegetables at all and the salt was used to cover up the flavor. Now, w/out salt, all there is is the veggie flavor or the herb flavor from the alternative spices - he'd rather not eat at all. He's becoming very, VERY depressed over this "eating merely to live" concept and has lost all enjoyment of food. We try to go through the good reasons - like still being here at all - but that's loosing the battle quickly. He's beginning to say things like "Now I understand what a lot of cancer patients mean when they say there comes a time when you have to way 'quality' against 'quantity', and there's no way i want to live to be 100 having mush to look forward to every day of it!" I know, sounds like a big pity party, but it's really taking it's toll on both of us & the Dr. just keeps saying "He'll get used to it". I don't think so.

2) They seem to think he'll be able to go back to work. (We were supposed to find out today, but Dr. had to reschedule to Thursday.) Anyway, This would be good because he's definitely a Type A personality and sitting around the house is driving him - and ME - nuts! It would also probably help some of the depression, too, except for one big fact...... Eating at Truck Stops (he's not a fast food eater, which is good) is NOT a low fat-low salt thing to do, and it's an inescapable part of the job!!! Salad bars - sure.... but not for a veggie hater. Plus, some of those truck stop salad bars are food poisoning waiting to happen. We've had that problem in the past, too, & he finds it much safer to eat food freshly prepared - so he orders things that have to be cooked upon order. There is no way he's going to be able to totally control the fat & salt content eating on the road 24/5.

We're going to ask the Dr. if there are any BP meds where he can at least use the salt substitute, but I wondered if any of you have gone through the same thing or if you are on any meds where substitutes can be used. (It's okay with is Diuretic - it's the BP, ACE Inhibitor, that's the problem.) Also, have any of you been able to up your salt intake eventually to 2500 or 3000 mgs? I think he could get by pretty well with this. It's still drastically lower than in the past - I'd hate to estimate what he used to use - probably at least 10,000 mg/day!!! And more realistic that he won't be so depressed and be able to stick with it when he returns to the road.

Also, anyone have a recipie for Ranch Dressing - that really TASTES like Ranch Dressing, that has very little fat & salt? The one's we've tried, well, I don't think those who came up with it ever actually TASTED Ranch Dressing, cuz................ Any web sites specifically for low fat/low salt cooking? I find one or the other lots of places, but not both. Just like the products in the stores - they have to add more of one to make up for taste loss of the other.

I truly thought the quitting smoking would be the most difficult thing for him to do, but he's not touched one since that fateful day! But this diet thing is getting worse & worse - not better AT ALL. Any help would be greatly appreciated!! Thanks!