World Heart Day

Today (Monday the 29th September) is World Heart Day, held by the World Heart Federation.

CASH and The World Health Organisation are calling for all countries to reduce their salt intake in line with their recommendations of LESS than 5g of salt per day for all adults, and less for children.  We are all too well aware that reducing salt intakes across the globe will cut the number of people experiencing heart disease and stroke, and, in turn, save lives. 

"Most of the salt that we eat (about 75-80%) is already in the foods that we buy, so the onus really is on the food industry to remove the unnecessary amounts of salt that they add to our food, to better enable us to make healthy choices"  Says Clare Farrand, International Programme Lead at WASH.

Salt puts up our blood pressure increasing our risk of having a stroke or heart attack.  Currently in the UK were are eating on average 8.1g/day, well above the maximum recommendations. This has been reduced by 15% in the last decade, thanks to the implementation of CASH's salt reduction programme. But more work needs to be done!

“Salt reduction is the single most cost effective public health strategy there is; it is absolutely vital that everyone joins in the battle to reduce the global burden of non-communicable diseases (heart disease, heart attacks and strokes)”, says Professor Graham MacGregor, Chairman of World Action on Salt and Health. “We support all efforts to reduce salt intake, and save the maximum number of lives. The UK has already reduced salt intake by 15% since the launch of its salt reduction programme, and is continuing to do so. So far this has led to a fall in population level blood pressure, saving approximately 18,000 stroke and heart attack events a year, 9,000 of which would have been fatal,” he says.

 

Click here to view the WHO salt reduction fact sheet.