The dreadful peril of salty sausages

What utter nonsense. Our blood is roughly as salty as seawater so any idea that salt is a problem for us is just do-gooder claptrap. If we can't handle salt, we can't handle anything. People on salt restricted diets in fact die SOONER!

The iconic Aussie sausage sanger has been hauled over the coals for its "extreme salt content" in a new review showing the bread and everything inside it blows sodium guidelines. The product review found that one single sausage sandwich at a barbecue contains an adult's daily recommended dose of salt, and double that suggested for a child.

Researchers reviewed almost 200 sausage, bread and sauce products found on supermarket shelves and found the vast majority exceed acceptable salt levels set in the UK. Just two per cent of 44 sausage and hotdog brands and 16 per cent of the 43 white bread products met the guidelines. There were huge content variations across products, with some sausages containing over three times as much salt as others, the researchers said. Dozens of tomato and barbecue sauce brands also were checked, with more than half failing to make the cut.

"That's an incredible salt overload on its own, let alone with everything else you eat in a day," said Dr Bruce Neal, research director at The George Institute for International Health in Sydney. "I know it's an icon of the Australian diet but if people knew what they were eating and what it's doing to their health they might well think twice about it."

Anecdotal evidence suggests the average Australian adult consumes about nine grams of salt a day, well above the six grams recommended for good health. The new review suggests the six-gram threshold would be met by one sandwich, bringing with it increased health risks. "There's very clear evidence that eating more salt pushes your blood pressure up and that increases your risk of stroke and heart attack," Dr Neal said. "You're obviously not going to fall dead as you bite into the sausage but you're going to pay for it down the track."

The study was released today as part of a national campaign to cut salt levels in food at home and in restaurants and supermarkets by 25 per cent over five years. The Australian Food and Grocery Council has lent support to the campaign, and several big brands like Coles, Kellogg and Unilever have begun efforts to reduce salt content in products. "The government now needs to make salt a national health priority and lead negotiations on maximum salt targets for different products," said Dr Neal, who chairs the Australian Division of World Action on Salt and Health.


Posted by John Ray. For a daily critique of Leftist activities, see DISSECTING LEFTISM. For a daily survey of Australian politics, see AUSTRALIAN POLITICS Also, don't forget your roundup of Obama news and commentary at OBAMA WATCH

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