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Five reasons to cut back on salt

Monday 10th March

Health campaigners are always warning us that we're consuming too much salt and, in response to public health concerns, many manufacturers are reducing the amount of salt in offenders such as shop-bought sandwiches and soups. Adults should have no more than six grams (approximately one teaspoon) of salt a day – and here are five good reasons not to overdo it.

1) Too much salt in the diet can cause high blood pressure, a condition that affects some 30 per cent of the UK's adult population. Raised blood pressure (hypertension) is the major factor in strokes, heart failure and heart attacks, which in turn are a major cause of death and disability in the UK.

2) A high-salt diet is associated with other serious health conditions, such as stomach cancer, osteoporosis, obesity, kidney stones and kidney disease.

3) Cutting back on the salt helps lower your blood pressure. This, in turn, will bring its own health benefits, reducing the associated risk of developing heart disease or having a stroke.

4) Watch your salt intake if you suffer from asthma, diabetes, Ménière's disease or Alzheimer’s. It can exacerbate your symptoms.

5) When cooking for the family, remember that children under the age of 11 should have less salt than adults. You'll find full details at NHS Choices. Not only is it essential for their health but also a great way of encouraging sensible eating in adulthood – as they're less likely to develop a taste for salty food.

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