How to use less salt and why?
Eating too much salt can increase your risk of developing high blood pressure which is a risk factor for heart disease,kidney disease, cancer, stroke and more recently obesity.
Normal blood pressure 120 mm Hg/80 mm Hg
PRE-hypertension 120-139 mm Hg/80-89 mm Hg
Hypertension-140-159 mm Hg/90-99 mm Hg stage 1
Whilst salt is not a direct cause of obesity it is a major influencing factor through its effect on soft drink consumption. Salt makes you thirsty and increases the amount of fluid you drink. 31% of the fluid drunk by 4-18 year old is sugary soft drinks which have been shown to be related to childhood obesity.Lancet. 2001; 357, 505-508 and British Medical Journal. 2004; 328,1237
In 2015, new research emerged to suggest that salt intake may directly increase the risk of obesity, independent of energy intake or sugar-sweetened beverage intake.
Reference: Hypertension 2015; 66: 00-00
The average Briton takes 1.5 tsp 8.1g per day. Adults should eat no more than 1 tsp 6g per day and children about half of this 3g/day. 75% of the salt we eat is in the food we buy.
So if you know what to look for and start choosing foods lower in salt, you can really reduce your intake.
Read labels and choose lower salt options
High salt :> 1.5g per 100g
Medium salt 0.3g-1.5g per 100g
low salt<0.3g per 100g
Here are some tips :
use herbs, spices and black pepper and less or no salt in cooking
remove the salt shaker of the table
Cook from fresh ingredients instead of buying salty processed /ready meals. Buy lower salt brands instead
Choose a lower salt sandwich filling e.g chicken salad or poached salmon instead of ham or cheese and pickle
Smoked foods can be high in salt
Buy tinned vegetables and pulses without added salt
Sea salt is no better than table salt
Avoid salty foods:
salty/processed meats e. g ham, bacon, sausages, pate,
Canned/packet/instant soups try fesh home -made instead
Ketchup, soy sauce, mayonnaise, pickles, pasta sauce
stock cubes, gravy powder and salted flavourings
Smoked meat, fish, prawns and anchovies
meat and yeast extracts
salty snacks like crisps, nuts, biscuits, popcorn try fresh home made plain popcorn,unsalted nuts instead
high salt ready made meals,sauces and take away pasta sauce try bulk cooking home -made meals instead
cereals can have salt added choose lower salt versions instead
Here are some low salt snack ideas:
fresh/dried/tinned fruit in natural juice
low fat/diet yoghurt or framage frais
unsalted Rice cake
low salt cereal with low fat milk
low salt cereal bar
Look out for my recipes coming soon in Gallery
For specialised Diet and Nutrition advice seek the advice of a Professional Dietitian and Nutritionist Tabby kabeer