TID:  1 026 VID:  9 MeSH ID:  D052756 Mesh Name:  Nutritional Sciences

New York Times quotes UCSF epidemiologist on salt intake

A January 28 New York Times story in its Style section examined claims that fast food can help in weight loss. While low-fat items on fast food menus are touted as being a healthy alternative, UCSF epidemiologist Kirsten Bibbins-Domingo, MD, PhD, commented that those items often come with another health cost: high levels of sodium. She added, “When we take these other (high-fat) things out of food, we often add back salt, and the salt is so far in excess of what would be considered a healthy quantity that it definitely counteracts any healthy benefits.”

Even a small dietary reduction in salt could mean fewer heart attacks, strokes and deaths

Reducing salt in the American diet by as little as one-half teaspoon (or three grams) per day could prevent nearly 100,000 heart attacks and 92,000 deaths each year, according to a new study. Such benefits are on par with the benefits from reductions in smoking and could save the United States about $24 billion in healthcare costs, the researchers add.