The weather is warming up and cool and crisp salads are making their way to my table a little more often. This salad takes just about 15 minutes to make and is nice and refreshing for the hot Summer days ahead.
I use feta cheese and olives in this salad and YES they are rich in salt. However these ingredients work in this salad as they are paired with low sodium ingredients, fresh tomatoes and cucumbers. Also, extra salt was not needed for the dressing due to the saltiness of the olives and feta. It is all about balance when it comes to following a healthy diet. Olives and feta cheese are both very low in potassium for those having to monitor their levels for kidney disease.
Can I eat tomatoes if I have kidney disease? This is a question I get from most of my kidney disease clients. The answer is yes, however you do need to pay attention to the type of tomato product and portion size if you have been told you have elevated blood potassium levels or hyperkalemia.
Most high potassium foods are categorized as having more than 200 mg of potassium per serving. A ½ cup serving of cherry tomatoes has about 177 mg of potassium, which is considered a low potassium food in this sense. However, when you concentrate the tomato source to make a sauce or juice the potassium amount increases. For example, a ½ cup serving of canned crushed tomatoes has 355 mg of potassium, which is now considered a high potassium food. Concentrating the tomato even more for ¼ cup of tomato paste you get a whopping 669 mg of potassium. This is why you are often advised to avoid tomato products such as tomato sauces with pasta. However, a slice of tomato on your sandwich or a few fresh tomatoes in your salad is OKAY! A one cup serving of this salad provides just about 200 mg of potassium.
The general daily recommendation for potassium in those without high blood potassium levels is 4,700 mg/day. This level has been shown to be beneficial in preventing hypertension, or high blood pressure.
I make this salad all the time and often change out the ingredients based on what I have available. You can add ¼ cup of chopped fresh basil or switch out the feta cheese with fresh mozzarella cheese. Adding 1 tsp of garlic to the dressing if you like garlic is another way to change this salad up a bit.
So add a little freshness to your plate with this super easy and tasty salad!
Cucumber Feta & Tomato Salad
Author: Brittany Sparks
Makes: 8 (1 Cup) Servings
Prep Time: 15 Minutes
Total Time: 15 Minutes
5 Cups Cucumber, Chopped
2 Cups Cherry Tomatoes, Halved
¾ cup Feta Cheese, Crumbled
¼ Cup Black or Kalamata Olives, Finely Chopped
2 Tbsp Olive Oil
1 Tbsp Balsamic Vinegar
1 Tsp Dried Oregano Leaves
½ Tsp Pepper
In a large bowl toss together the cucumber, tomato, feta cheese and olives.
In a small bowl add all the ingredients for the dressing and whisk to combine. Pour over the salad and gently stir to coat in the dressing.