Science News

Did you Add Salt to your Christmas Dinner ?

Sun, 6th Jan 2002

Part of the show Egyptology and Ancient Egypt

We should try not to add salt to our food, according to research published this week, because it leads to higher blood pressure, heart disease and strokes. The body needs about a gram of salt per day, but most of us eat at least 9 times that much, and in some parts of the world, such as Japan, people often eat over 25 grams per day and have substantially higher blood pressure, stroke and heart attack risk as a result. Cutting salt intake can reduce blood pressure enough for people on blood pressure medications to no longer need tablets, and even benefits people with normal blood pressure. The major problem is that many of us simply do not realise how much salt is added to the food we eat. A packet of crisps alone, for example, contains a day's salt requirements. Therefore, the best way to benefit your health is to add as little salt as possible to your food, increase the amount of fresh fruit and vegetables that you eat, cut down on salty foods like crisps, and go out for a brisk 30 minute walk 3 times a week.

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