Sharing a home, or at least the kitchen, with someone with significant dietary restrictions can be a challenge.
For even if we don’t share or follow their diet, we want to at least make them comfortable, and not tempt them by filling the pantry and refrigerator with things they can’t eat.
Redditor aita_saltybf found herself somewhat challenged when her boyfriend demanded that she stop using a specific ingredient in all her cooking.
A demand the original poster (OP) was somewhat hesitant to comply with, owing to the fact that this was an ingredient found in just about everything.
Wondering if she was being insensitive to her boyfriend, the OP took to the subReddit “Am I The A**hole” (AITA), where she asked fellow Redditors:
“AITA for not cutting the salt from the dinners I cook for me and my boyfriend?”
The OP explained why she was less than willing to leave a certain ingredient out of her cooking, even if doing so was meant to benefit her boyfriend’s health.
“My boyfriend [33 M[ale]] and I [29 F[emale]] have been living together for the last 1.5 years (together for 2.5).’
“A few months ago, my boyfriend had his blood pressure measured and it came back ever so slightly high.”
“He’s a very healthy weight for his height, tall thin (but muscley from work as a diesel mechanic), but high blood pressure is no joke so he decided to try to clean up his diet a little.”
“I do 90% of the cooking at home (by choice, he does dishes and vacuums so this isn’t an issue), and I genuinely cook on the healthier side.”
“I’m only 5’3″ and slim and athletic so I focus a lot on healthy proteins, so we eat a lot of proteins and veggies and I like to play around with different sauces and things to make it interesting.”
“I feel like the meals I make set a strong foundation for an overall healthy lifestyle.”
“My boyfriend loves my cooking and always brags to his friends about the things we eat.”
“Suddenly, my boyfriend decided he doesn’t want to eat salt in the things we eat at home, at all.”
“I can’t work with that.”
“We’ve never used salt excessively in our diet so asking me to cut a healthy amount of salt from our meals just seems ridiculous.”
“I do too much cardio and strength training and don’t want to end up with a sodium deficiency because my boyfriend suddenly decided we can’t have salt in breakfast or dinner (meals we eat together).”
“I brought that up to me and he suggested salting my food separately (which…fine but we all know it doesn’t taste the same) or cooking our food in separate pots, or for me to supplement in other ways (like Gatorade).”
“This is where the issue comes in…I would be perfectly happy to make these accommodations if I felt like it would actually help, but he’s constantly snacking on high sodium snacks (like chips and pretzels and frozen egg rolls) and I just feel like it’s unfair to ask me to change how I salt our food before working to cut out some of his unhealthy eating choices.”
“He’s gotten to the point where he feels like he’s disrespected if I cook for both of us and use salt, and he’ll refuse to eat or do the dishes if I tell him I’ve salted the food.”
“I think he’s being a baby and refuse to stop salting our food.”
“We’re at an impasse.”
“To clarify, my question is mostly ‘Am I the a**hole for refusing to make 100% of the changes to address his issue when he refuses to make literally any changes outside of the two meals I cook us?'”
“I feel like the salt content in our food is not going to be the change he needs to reduce his sodium content.”
“Also, when I say he snacks, I’m talking frequent snacks- around 6-8 times a day.”
Fellow Redditors weighed in on where they believed the OP fell in this particular situation, by declaring:
- NTA – Not The A**hole
- YTA – You’re The A**hole
- NAH – No A**holes Here
- ESH – Everyone Sucks Here
The Reddit community agreed that the OP was not the a**hole for refusing to leave salt out of her cooking.
Everyone agreed that the OP was justified in believing that the OP was under no obligation to eliminate salt from her cooking for her boyfriend’s sake when he was barely making an effort himself by eating all his high-sodium snacks.
“If he’s eating high sodium snacks and wants you to cut the small amount of salt used in cooking homemade meals, he clearly doesn’t have a grasp on dietary sodium intake.”- Radiant-Walrus-4961
“Pretty sure an actual salt lick has less sodium than frozen egg rolls.”- gleaming-the-cubicle
“The high-sodium snacks are the issue, not your cooking.”
“When I was a kid, my dad developed high cholesterol and was told to cut out red meat.”
“So the whole family cut out what little red meat we were eating.”
“Lo and behold, we discover that dad is just eating red meat for lunch at work instead.”
“So that was the end of the whole family making a change, because why should we when he won’t help himself.”- irate_anatid
“The fact that he keeps consuming lots of salt outside of meals makes you NTA.”
“If he wants salt free dinner, he’s salt free to cook for himself.”- Infamous_Control_778
“NTA if he still eats salty snacks.”
“I was on the fence until I got to that part.”
“No way.”- WayMoreCowbell
“Make him cook his own dinners.”
“He’s eating salty snacks and bitching about your cooking.”
“He can take care of himself.”
“When he cuts out the salty snacks, you’ll resume cooking with compromise.”
“I was sympathetic to your BF, until you got to the snacks.”
“That is the easiest place to cut the salt, and those contain much more sodium than anything you would cook at home.”
“Basically, it sounds like your BF is saying that he wants to put all the work for this on you instead of on him.”
“If he doesn’t have the discipline to cut the snacks out of his diet to control his sodium, then what is going to happen is that, even if you do everything he asks, it isn’t going to work, and he is going to keep yelling at you because he is failing, and he will use you as an excuse as to why his sodium isn’t dropping.”- bamf1701
“Tell him if he is still having these issues after 6 months of no high sodium snacks, you’ll cut the salt in your other food.”
“Until then, if he won’t eat your food, stop cooking for him.”- mynamecouldbesam
“He should either (1) cut his salty snacks or (2) start cooking for himself first.”
“Both of those are options to affect his diet without throwing yours off.”
“He could even take over the cooking, which if it was me I’d find the lack of salt more palatable if I didn’t need to do the cooking.”
“You sound like you handle salting dishes similarly to me.”
“If a recipe calls for a specific amount, I will follow that.”
“If it says ‘salt to taste’ it gets a small dash of salt.”
“If he’s eating chips and pretzels and other salty sh*t then he’s asking you to sacrifice flavor and enjoyment in your meals because he’s too lazy to make the impactful changes to his own diet and habits.”
“Tell him he’s free to cook for himself.”- quackerjacks45
“He wants saltless food, he can cook for himself.”- Propriate
“NTA and I think moving forward just have him cook his own meals.”
“He sounds selfish and low key toxic girl be careful.”-Afloritas199
“Stop cooking for him.”- Equivalent_Secret_26
“Keep an eye open regarding your relationship.”
“A few yellow flags are being raised here.”
“Up to this point, your relationship sounds relatively healthy.”
“His current attitude is a bit concerning.”
“It’s pretty hypocritical of him to demand cutting out all salt in your cooking, then turn around and snack on high sodium chips and pretzels.”- More-Jacket-9034
“He needs to cut the junk food first.”
“No salt in home cooked meals is just…sad.”
“Also, curious how health conscious he can be if he snacks 6 or 8 times a day on junk and thinks supplementing all other forms of sodium with Gatorade is a good idea.”- armchairshrink99
“NTA tell him you will stop cooking with salt when he stops eating snacks with a high salt content.”-spikeymist
“The big issues in salt are coming 100% from his snack food.”
“If he’s not willing to address that, the cooking won’t solve much.”- lumnicence2
Support is a two-way street.
If the OP’s boyfriend wants her support to help him deal with his high blood pressure, he needs to make the effort himself.
Perhaps if he takes a closer look at his snacking habits, he might realize that his high blood pressure likely isn’t owing to the salt the OP puts in her cooking.