Three-quarters of the world’s population eats almost twice the daily recommended amount of salt, the American Heart Association said Thursday. Sodium intake worldwide averages at nearly 4,000 mg a day, according to 2010 figures. “We hope our findings will influence national governments to develop public health interventions to lower sodium,” said lead study author Dr. Saman Fahimi, a visiting scientist at the Harvard School of Public Health in Boston.
OTTAWA — The federal government is hoping to “educate” Canadians about the efforts of its border guard agents by taking part in a B.C.-based reality TV program, the Canada Border Services Agency said Friday. The CBSA was responding to critics who say the show, which films agents arresting drug smugglers and “phoney immigrants,” is a taxpayer-funded attempt to promote the Conservatives’ law-and-order agenda. Opposition MPs and a B.C. criminologist also said Border Security: Canada’s Front Line violates the privacy and dignity of individuals being filmed...“I think it’s appalling,” said New Democratic Party deputy leader Libby Davies. “People are presumed innocent until they’ve gone through due process. Having your face blasted on a reality TV show and having to sign a waiver, often under pressure, is I think a loss of a person’s rights and dignity and respect.”
TORONTO — Force the food industry to lower salt levels in products. Slap warning labels on foods that exceed healthy salt intake. And develop policies that ban too much salt in meals served in daycares, schools and nursing homes. Those are just a handful of salt reduction strategies Canadians say they “overwhelmingly” support, according to a new study. University of Toronto and University of Guelph researchers polled more than 2,600 Canadians across the country to get a pulse on where residents stand on salt reduction policies. Turns out, more than 80 per cent are throwing their support behind government intervention to reduce salt intake. Sixty-seven per cent of Canadians also have salt on their radar — especially older people and those with high blood pressure.
Consuming less than 1,300 mg of sodium per day meant I had to be much more careful about my food choices. And it wasn't simply a matter of making my own lunch and avoiding fast-food joints. I was already -- generally -- doing that. Canadians, on average, consume about 3,400 mg of sodium per day. But the average adult requires only 1,500 mg or less, and the Canadian and American governments advise that we consume no more than 2,300 mg per day. It's incredibly easy to exceed that...Federal NDP Health Critic Libby Davies has introduced a private member's bill (C-460) in the House of Commons that would implement much of the Sodium Working Group's recommendations. It is to be debated in the next few weeks and should come to a vote in April. Davies (Vancouver East) isn't impressed with Ottawa's concern that now is not the time -- when the economy is fragile -- to make progress on an important health issue. "If not now, then when?" she said. "What is the cost of people's health?"
Too much sodium can have serious long-term health effects. But many Canadians don’t realize they regularly consume dangerous levels of salt on a daily basis. That’s because most of the sodium we consume is added to food products, such as sauces, canned vegetables, and salad dressings, before we take them home. About 80 per cent of our sodium intake comes from packaged or processed foods. Now, a group of researchers has created a tool to help Canadians understand how much salt they’re getting and the biggest sources. Researchers from the University of Toronto, the Ottawa Hospital Research Institute and the Institute for Clinical Evaluative Sciences have developed an online salt calculator at projectbiglife.ca. It asks users a series of questions, such as how often they eat out, how many times a week they consume frozen or canned dishes and how often they use condiments in their meals, to estimate total sodium consumption...The concern is that a diet high in sodium is a major risk factor for high blood pressure, which can lead to heart attack, stroke and other serious health problems. High sodium intake has also been linked to osteoporosis, stomach cancer and kidney problems. Sodium is a controllable risk factor for these problems, which is why so many health professionals are urging governments to take action on the issue.
Sodium levels in many foods served at Canadian restaurant chains exceed the amount an adult should take in during a day, a new study finds. Researchers examined the salt levels in more than 9,000 foods sold at 65 fast-food restaurants and 20 sit-down restaurant chains with at least 20 locations across the country. Considering how common it is to dine out, along with the pervasiveness of hypertension and its health risks, the study authors said it was important to take a systematic look at sodium levels to assess progress towards the federal, provincial and territorial target of lowering sodium intake to 2,300 milligrams per person per day by 2016.