A report has confirmed that using potassium-based salt replacers instead of sodium in food would have a positive impact on public health.
The findings from the Scientific Advisory Committee on Nutrition (SACN) and the Committee on Toxicity has taken four-and-a-half years to be published and gives backing to the view that the potential benefits of using potassium-based salt replacers outweighs any risks. It also means that the industry can work towards any salt reduction targets set by the government.
“We welcome this long-anticipated report and look forward now to working with food manufacturers to reduce the dangerous levels of salt we’re consuming in the UK,” said Caroline Klinge from LoSalt.
The recommended daily allowance of salt is 6g a day but the average intake for an adult is 8.1g. Too much salt can increase the risk of high blood pressure, which in turn can cause heart disease and stroke. The research found that by replacing 15-20% of sodium chloride with potassium chloride could stop thousands of people dying unnecessarily.
Katharine Jenner, campaign director at Consensus Action on Salt and Health, added: “Salt is unnaturally added to food in huge amounts and is putting up our blood pressure. Conversely, potassium is contained naturally in fruit and veg and lowers our blood pressure. This advice will pave the way for thousands of food products to lower their salt levels, whilst still being tasty and safe to eat.”