When you've eaten and loved something for your whole life because of its unique flavor, suddenly doing without it can feel like deprivation. For anyone who needs to reduce their sodium intake seriously, regular soy sauce and even many reduced-sodium versions can be a problem. But there is an alternative to pick up on your next trip to an Asian market that's organic and rich in umami flavor. It's a product from the Philippines that combines aged coconut sap and mineral-rich sea salt. It has up to 17 amino acids that add the rich, savory flavor soy sauce is known for, and it has up to 75-percent less sodium.

Others who are interested in trying a soy sauce alternative may do so because they like organic foods and prefer them. There are many good reasons for choosing natural and organic products, and they range from flavor to peace of mind. When you try something new, you might find you enjoy it more than the original or can use it on more (or different) foods. All of these things make a case for shopping Asian markets for new versions of products you love. You'll be impressed by the ever-expanding selection of organic products; many have been added in only the past year or two.

It's also worth bringing up the easy sort capabilities on grocers' websites these days. If you like natural and organic items, it's easy to run a search and find everything that's available. In a couple of minutes, you can scroll through the entire list in a way that would take hours to do in a physical store, assuming you'd even be able to find every item. There are some significant advantages to shopping online, and if you haven't tried it ever or for a long time, it's something to consider. If you're pressed for time in your life, placing an order in minutes from your smartphone or laptop and having it delivered will save you time.

In the early days of alternate and generic food products, many were lackluster in their taste and texture. But food producers today take things much more seriously and hold themselves to higher standards. They know consumers like you have choices, and if they don't meet the bar with their products, you'll try someone else's. It should give all of us more encouragement to try product alternatives, especially if they are healthier. Also, if the flavor doesn't bowl you over the first time, give your tastebuds some opportunity to adjust before you give up on something better for you to eat more often.