Australians need to cut down on salt

ALARMING new research from the George Institute revealing Australians are consuming twice the recommended amount of salt is a timely reminder that we need to get serious about cutting back on salt.

While eating too much salt is often overshadowed by other harmful eating habits, such as sugar, fat, and fad diets, it’s no secret that salt is one of the biggest killers in our pantries.

The Global Burden of Disease study found almost one in 20 deaths in Australia is attributable to high salt intake – that’s six times the annual road toll.

Excessive salt consumption increases the risk of high blood pressure and cardiovascular disease including heart attack, stroke and blood vessel disease.

Cutting back on salt is a cost-effective way to improve our health.

Research shows that reducing Australia’s salt intake by 30 per cent would save more than 3400 lives a year and millions of dollars in healthcare costs. 

Unfortunately, it’s hard to keep track of how much salt we’re eating because most salt in the average Aussie diet comes from processed foods and may not be obvious.

With Victorians eating more than 18 truckloads of salt each week it’s time to put down the salt shaker and kick our salty habit for good.

Jenny Reimers,

VicHealth dietician

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