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A diet worth its salt

The Food Standards Agency in Britain has suggested that people should now concentrate on their daily intake of salt.

india Updated: Aug 02, 2007 00:32 IST

They stopped the sweets, they banned the slabs of meat, they threw the cigarettes away and forced a cut- back on alcohol. Not satisfied, they yelled that there was lead in the spinach and cadmium in the milk. And now, they’re ready to snatch the salt from our food. The Food Standards Agency in Britain has suggested that people should now concentrate on their daily intake of salt as a level above 6 grams a day is inviting trouble in the form of heart attacks.

Cutting down salt intake by 2 to 3 grams per day can apparently reduce the risk of heart attacks by a quarter. The experts have cautioned office-goers against opting for the ubiquitous ‘health salad’ that has emerged as the weapon of choice to battle transfats and keep triglycerides at bay. Ah, but what can salt-of-the earth salads do to harm? A lot of damage, according to the Consensus Action on Salt and Health (yes, it does exist). Salads and pastas apparently can contain up to three quarters of your daily salt intake. Now we can’t take that with a pinch of salt.

So at the end of the day, what can a person eat? Non-spicy, non-meaty, non-cheesy, non-fattening, saltless stuff. We might as well chew on a stalk or two of grass. But that'll get any environmentalist worth his or her salt up in arms. So let’s just take all these recommendations with a pinch of salt. Each to his own taste.