Is it time to ban salty junk food?

As much as 75% of salt consumed in the UK is from restaurants and processed foods, while only 15% is added at the table. Excess salt intake is linked with an increased risk of heart disease, including strokes. This is why a recent study published in BMJ Open is calling for salty foods to be banned, or at least more strongly regulated across Europe and in the UK.

The British Government initially made great progress with salt reduction campaigns, but the study’s author, Professor Francesco Cappuccio believes that progress has stalled and that there is still much more to be done. The scientists carried out a study in Italy involving almost 4,000 participants. Sodium was measured in urine to work out salt consumption. They found that those who had lower skilled jobs had 6.5% more salt in their urine than those in higher paid jobs.

It’s advised that you eat no more than 6g of salt per day – the quantity is much less for children. 5g of additional salt per day is linked to a 24% increased risk of stroke. Serious stuff. I say this so often, but only because it’s true; you are better off preparing food at home where you are in control of the amount of salt, sugar and fat that you put in your food.

It may be time to ban salty junk food…

References:

Call for government to curb the production and sale of cheap salty junk food

Geographic and socioeconomic variation of sodium and potassium intake in Italy: results from the MINISAL-GIRCSI programme


Fiona WilkinsonAbout Fiona

I am a Nutrition and Behavioural Psychologist with an MSc in Clinical Nutrition and a PhD in Mental Health. I specialise in long-term weight loss, disordered eating and binge eating. I run both online and in-person programmes to help you with any weight or eating issues you may have picked up over the years. We’re all different and have different needs so I work very much with you as an individual and together we’ll work out a programme to fit you.

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