Expert warns of high salt consumption dangers

 A high amount of salt intake can increase risks of raising blood pressure, developing heart disease and a stroke.

This was highlighted during the Ministry of Health’s (MOH) awareness program on salt reduction held at their conference room yesterday.

According to the MOH principal nutritionist, Christina Soti-Ulberg, “this whole week is raising awareness on salt reduction.”

“The theme for this year's program is 'It's time for action' which aligns with the work conducted by the MOH in raising awareness.

“We wanted to focus on restaurants in regards to catering guidelines and also school canteens - there is a consistent monitoring conducted by MOH in compliance of schools to healthy foods.

“The feedback we have received is higher now but usually its 33 per cent but now it is 57 per cent but it stills means that a 43 per cent in not compliant,” said the Principal nutritionist.

Mrs. Ulberg said that some of the foods that contain a lot of salt are noodles.

“Today (yesterday) was mostly bringing in our canteen owners as well as the restaurant owners and food handlers.

“It is significant that the participants are aware of the reasons why we monitor the work that they carry out - it all comes back to prioritizing the children’s health.

“It is because a salt diet raises our blood pressure, increasing the risk of having a stroke or developing heart disease and eating too much salt is also linked with osteoporosis, kidney disease and stomach cancer,” she added.

She also told Samoa Observer that the workshop was very successful, due to the various feedbacks.

“The participants highlighted that there was a great need of more consultations so that it can spread more awareness and understanding on salt reduction.”

Salt is made up of sodium and chloride, some sodium is needed in our diet to help maintain fluid balance in our body and for cell function but too much can be harmful for our health.

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