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Action on Salt

Salt and men's health 2011

Salt Awareness Week 2011 focused on ‘Salt and Men’s Health’. Men eat more salt and less fruit and vegetables, have higher blood pressure and are less likely to visit their GP compared to women. CVD accounts for nearly 30% of preventable deaths in men and before the age of 75 men are more than twice as likely to die prematurely from cardiovascular disease (34,431 vs. 16,664 deaths per year). Many of the deaths could have been prevented by eating less salt.

How much salt?

The maximum recommendation of salt for adults is 6g of salt per day - just one teaspoon’s worth. People in the UK are currently eating an average of 8.6g of salt per day, with young men having more than 10g! The amount of salt that men have over their lifetime is equivalent of 365 pints of salt



As part of the week we commissioned an opinion poll through YouGov looking at men's favourite foods and their awareness of salt. The survey highlighted Traditional English and Indian cuisine as men's favourite foods, with Traditional English foods (such as pies, steak and sausages) coming out top for men over the age of 35. The survey also highlighted that few people are worried about suffering from heart disease (11%), despite it being one of the biggest killers in the UK and one of the leading health conditions caused by a high salt diet. The results also showed that only 15% of men could correctly identify 6g as the recommendation for salt, with 10% of men believing the recommendation to be more than 10g. 

Following on from the opinion poll results we conducted a food survey looking at the salt content of pies sold in supermarkets, takeaways and pubs. The results were shocking with a single pie and mash meal from Wetherspoon's containing a huge 7.5g of salt - more than the maximum daily recommendation!

The week generated more than 240 pieces of news coverage across both national and regional papers, radio, TV and online. The estimated reach was almost 45 million people!

'Low salt cooking for men'

We also put together a new recipe book for the week 'Low salt cooking for men'. It contains 22 heart healthy recipes for men's favourite foods including pizza, curry and pie. The book also has a number of recipes donated by celebrities including a curry recipe from Chris Kamara and a soup recipe from Levi Roots!

Download the Salt Awareness Week 2011 Summary & Evaluation [PDF 1,516KB] document here


CASH are working with a number of charities this year. Together, we aim to highlight to the public, particularly men and their families, the risks involved with a high salt diet and the importance of looking at labels to ensure high salt foods are not consumed.

Some celebrities have also got behind the campaign including:

  • Antony Worrall Thompson - Celebrity Chef
"I'm pleased that the effect of a high salt diet on men's health is being highlighted in Salt Awareness Week. I support this initiative and would urge the food industry to think about how much salt is added to our food"
  • Levi Roots - Celebrity Chef
"This year let’s all correct a fault and reduce our intake of salt; it's all about a healthier life style. One love"


For a full list of supporters click here

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