Published: June 25, 2010
The participants in the study tended to consume roughly 1teaspoons of salt each day. People in the more restrictive group — those at increased risk of high blood pressure — were eating twice as much as they should have, the study found.
Health officials currently say no adult should eat more than a teaspoon of salt each day. They go on to advise that 70 percent of adults — including people with high blood pressure, all African-Americans and everyone over 40 — should actually limit their salt intake to a more restrictive two-thirds of a teaspoon.
Sodium increases the risk of high blood pressure, which is major cause of heart disease and stroke.
Overall, only 1 in 10 adults meet the teaspoon standard, said the CDC study. But for those who should be even stingier, only 1 in 18 manage to do it.
The research repeated what others have found, that the majority of dietary salt comes from processed and restaurant foods. And it concluded that salt was most commonly found in cold cuts and other meats, and in baked goods and other items counted as grain-based products.
Salt reduction has become a recent focus of public health campaigns. New York City, the American Heart Association and nearly three dozen other groups have been trying to persuade food manufacturers and chain eateries to reduce salt content.