Indians consume double the recommended salt intake: Study
As per a study, the intake of salt by Indians is nearly twice the amount recommended by the World Health Organisation (WHO). Indians consume about 3.7 grams of sodium, corresponding to about 9.3 grams of salt per day. The positive thing is that salt (or sodium) intake has decreased slightly in India between 1990 and 2010.
As per the research by the University of Cambridge and Harvard School of Public Health:
- The global average salt consumption in 2010 was around 10 grams per person per day, corresponding to 4 grams per day of sodium.
- In 181 of 187 nations studied, national intakes exceeded the WHO recommended intake of 2 grams per day of sodium (about 5 grams per day of salt).
- In 119 countries (88.3% of the world’s adult population), the national intake exceeded this recommended amount by more than 1 gram per day of sodium.
- There are also major regional variations around this global average. Highest intakes are found in regions lying along the old Silk Road – from East Asia, through Central Asia to Eastern Europe and the Middle East.
Is excess consumption of Common Salt (NaCl) harmful?
Yes. Earlier sudies have found that high or low salt diets are both harmful. The risk of heart attacks, strokes, congestive heart failure, and death from heart disease, increases considerably when people consume more than 7 grams or less than 3 grams of sodium a day. A recent study by the US based Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) had found that there is no benefit of reducing salt intake to below 2.3 g per day. The study could not find any consistent evidence to support a link between sodium intake and either a beneficial or adverse effect on health.