Dietary Salt Reduction
Reducing dietary salt is recommended by the recent United Nations Summit to prevent non communicable diseases and the World Health Organization to improve population health. Excess dietary salt increases blood pressure causing approximately 30% of hypertension and is a probable pro carcinogen for gastric cancer and is also associated with kidney stones and osteoporosis.
Where assessed, the salt consumption is more than 5/g day, maximum quantity recommended by WHO. African descent people are particularly susceptible to the adverse blood pressure effects of excess salt. High levels of blood pressure is a contributory factor in at least 40% of all heart disease and stroke which represent 45 % of NCDs. Hypertension is a major health risk in the Americas where between 20-35% of the adult population has elevated blood pressure.
PAHO/WHO urges countries to reduce salt intake to prevent hypertension and heart disease
Side event at UN NCD Review highlights initiatives to reduce salt in 12 countries of the Americas, as part of the "Salt-Smart Americas" initiative. Reducing salt consumption at the population level could save some 8.5 million lives globally over 10 years by reducing hypertension, the leading risk factor for cardiovascular disease, research suggests. At a special event on 10 July at United Nations headquarters, experts from the Pan American Health Organization/World Health Organization and PAHO/WHO Member States urged more countries to launch national salt reduction initiatives to prevent hypertension and cardiovascular disease.
Salt-Smart Americas: A Guide for Country-Level Action UN NCD Review High-level meeting
Posters: Salt reduction awareness 2014 #1 Salt reduction awareness 2014 #2
:: Technical Advisory Group
- WHO/PAHO Regional Expert Group for Cardiovascular Disease Prevention through Population-Wide Dietary Salt Reduction Final Report. 2011
- Second Meeting of the Expert Group with Countries and Partners: Reviewing Advances and Planning the Second Phase (10/2011)
- First Meeting of PAHO Expert Group on Cardiovascular Disease Prevention through Dietary Salt Reduction (9/2009)
:: Communication Materials
:: Policy Statement
- Policy Statement: Preventing Cardiovascular Disease in the Americas by Reducing Dietary Salt Intake Population-Wide
- Recomendação para as políticas nacionais: Prevenção das doenças cardiovasculares nas Américas através da redução do consumo de sal para a toda a população (In Portuguese)
- Salt Reduction - List of Endorsements
:: Technical Documents
- Targets and timelines for food categories in the Canadian and United States National Salt Reduction Initiatives
- Targets and timelines for food categories in common in Argentina, Brazil, Canada, Chile and the National Salt Reduction Initiative
- Report for the technical meeting on setting targets and timelines to reduce the salt content of food