domingo, 1 de mayo de 2011

Why cut down on salt?

salt and pepper shakers Eating too much salt can raise your blood pressure, which triples your risk of developing heart disease or stroke.
And since many people in the UK eat too much salt, that means that lots of people would benefit from cutting down. These are some of the benefits:
  • Cutting down on salt reduces blood pressure, whether or not your blood pressure is high to start with.

  • When your blood pressure goes down, your risk of developing heart disease and stroke goes down too, whatever your age.

  • If you have high blood pressure, cutting down on salt could lower your blood pressure after four weeks. Try to make this a permanent change to carry on seeing the positive effects.

  • You may start to notice a wider range of flavours in food, as your taste buds adjust to having less salt.
Adults should eat no more than 6g of salt a day. Reducing the UK’s average daily salt intake for adults to 6g could prevent about 17,500 premature deaths a year.

On this page

 Blood pressure
 Heart disease and stroke

Blood pressure

It's possible to develop high blood pressure at any age. In England and Scotland about a third of people have high blood pressure, also called hypertension.
It's sometimes called the 'silent killer', because most people with high blood pressure have no symptoms and don't realise they have it.
People with high blood pressure are three times more likely to develop heart disease or have a stroke than people with normal blood pressure. And they are twice as likely to die from these diseases.
In the animation below, nutritionist Sam Montel explains how too much salt can raise your blood pressure and damage your body. Turn up the volume if you want to hear her commentary, or alternatively you can read the text that goes with each scene.
After each scene, click on the next number to continue. You can replay any scene by clicking on it again.

Heart disease and stroke

  • Coronary heart disease is the most common cause of death in the UK, with about 94,000 people dying each year.
  • Stroke is the third biggest killer and a leading cause of severe disability in the UK. More than 250,000 people live with disabilities caused by stroke.
  • In 2006, about 55,000 deaths in the UK were caused by stroke.
You can reduce your risk of heart disease and stroke by cutting down on salt, eating a healthy diet, being active and maintaining a healthy weight.

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