- February 11, 2016
- Posted by: emobile
- Category: Researcher's Corner
Emobileclinic Researcher’s corner
A recent research has observed an alarming increase in consumption of sodium in small kids of age of 3.5 years majorly from processed foods . We get about 75% of sodium from the intake of salt. It isn’t news that too much consumption of salt above the daily requirement is harmful to both kids and adults. It increases the blood pressure, rate of heart disease and stroke.
WHO recommended that adults should consume 2g/daily of sodium an equivalent 5g of salt daily while children of age 1-3 years are to consume UL intake of 1000mg /2.6g daily. The researchers assessed dietary sodium intake and the food sources of sodium in a sample of 251 Australian preschool children.’The average daily sodium intake was determined using three unscheduled 24 h dietary recalls. The contributions of food groups, core, discretionary and processed foods to daily sodium intake were assessed.
Based on the assessment, the researchers say there is need for ‘comprehensive sodium reduction strategy’. The lead researcher says despite the fact that the data was underestimated as table salt was not included, sodium level was still high( 3.9±1.3 (SD) g/day) against 2.6g
The research itemized main food sources of sodium in children and their percentage ;according to the result, cereal/cereal products is (25%), milk products (19%), meat, poultry/game (17%) and cereal-based products (15%). Core foods contributed 65%, while discretionary foods contributed 35% of total daily sodium intake, within the total diet’, says lead researcher. Grain (cereal) foods, vegetables and legumes/beans; fruit, milk, yoghurt, cheese and/or alternatives and lean meats and poultry, fish, eggs, tofu, nuts and seeds and legumes/beans are classified as core foods while food and beverages, which are energy-dense and/or high saturated in fats, sugars or salt, are classified as discretionary foods.
From the result it is obvious that most children ‘exceeded the recommended UL for sodium ‘ and experts say ‘core and ultra processed foods were key sources of sodium which suggests that reductions in the sodium content of these foods are required to reduce sodium intake in young children.’ This is also necessary as estimated 2.5 million deaths is recorded each year due to high salt consumption .
The following measures can be followed to reduce intake of salt according to WHO;
–not adding salt during the preparation of food;
–not having a salt shaker on the table;
–limiting the consumption of salty snacks;
–choosing products with lower sodium content for the children.