1122 GMT February 29, 2020
High blood pressure is often branded the ‘silent killer’ as symptoms usually go undetected at first, then serious problems strike. Similarly, people consume large amounts of salt without realizing the risks associated, express.co.uk wrote.
According to Katharine Jenner, CEO of Blood Pressure UK, "We are all eating too much salt which can damage our health. Salt puts up our blood pressure leading to an increased risk of strokes and heart attacks; it is also linked to kidney disease, stomach cancer and osteoporosis.”
Despite efforts to ween people off salt, 93 percent of people still use salt at home. According to GP and medical commentator Sarah Jarvis, “Reducing the amount of salt in our diets can help save lives and millions in health care costs. The average person in the UK is consuming 8.1g of salt which is much higher than is recommended, so this is an issue that needs to be addressed.”
Jarvis recommends the following five dietary tips to reduce your salt intake:
● Try to cut down on processed food as this is where the majority of salt in our diets come from. Ready meals, readymade sauces and soups are often high in salt
● Keep processed meats to a minimum. Bacon, ham and sausages contain salt
● Don’t be duped into thinking posh gourmet sea and rock salts are better for you. Some of these manufacturers make very misleading claims. They all contain exactly the same amount of sodium as regular table salt and any other trace minerals will be present in such small quantities that you won’t get any benefit
● Avoid seasoning and adding salt to food at home. Try using herbs, spices and lemon juice instead. Weaning yourself off salt takes some getting used to, but your palate will adjust. If you can’t go without salt, then you are better to use a reduced sodium salt like LoSalt instead. It is the sodium in salt which is linked to high blood pressure
● Remember, high blood pressure is very common and it often has no symptoms. It usually affects individuals as they get older and will be checked as part of NHS health check which the British people are invited to every five years between the ages of 40-74. The health checks can help detect early signs for high blood pressure, stroke, kidney disease, heart disease, type 2 diabetes and dementia.
According to the UK National Health Service (NHS), other ways to lower a surging blood pressure include:
● Lose weight if you're overweight
● Exercise regularly
● Cut down on caffeine
● Stop smoking
● Try to get at least six hours of sleep a night