Heart Health: Worth One's Salt

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

The latest health initiative by the Bloomberg administration is to limit the salt intake by New Yorkers. Marion Nestle, Paulette Goddard Professor in the Department of Nutrition at NYU and the author of Food Politics, discusses how the measures could affect your eating habits.


Marion Nestle

Comments [21]

Levi Wallach from Reston, VA

I also wanted to state one more thing. The so called danger of sodium in increasing blood pressure has not been scientifically proven among most people. A very small subset are sensitive, but to everyone else it has no effect. Yet it's extrapolated and been become standard issue for dietitians despite lack of Proof. Gary Taubes got a Science In Society Journalism Award for uncovering this over 10 years ago! It's a fascinating and lengthy study on how science, politics, ego, inertia, etc., all collude to make someone's initial theories into dogma despite never getting solid backing via the scientific method because the authors and others were so convinced initially about their hunch that they refuse to take no for an answer and perform mental acrobatics in order to make non-proof into proof.

Feb. 05 2010 12:07 AM
Levi Wallach from Reston, VA

I think it's dishonest when this woman says this isn't "nanny state" because people don't have a choice now, but then suggests that the move should be first towards information, then "enforcement." So basically they are going to force THEIR choice of low or no salt vs. things having salt.

Part of the reason why there's a good amount of salt in things is that it tastes good. Basically what you are saying to people is "I know better what is for you so I'm going to force you to only have the choice to buy something with what I deem as healthy, then you can add whatever you want." Guess what, there are already plenty of low-salt foods out there, I see them every time I go to the supermarket! Restaurants are a different matter and really you have no idea what they are putting in your foot saltwise or otherwise, so it just behooves you to ask questions and be careful and make sure you trust the restaurant and chef.

Feb. 04 2010 11:59 PM

I think the lesson is cook your own food!

Jan. 12 2010 03:34 PM

Hey fit pro - I make ketchup at home and it's delicious (with thai fish sauce and natural fermentation) - on eggs

Jan. 12 2010 03:32 PM

Grey sea salt and other unprocessed salts are full of trace minerals - good for you. Iodized salt goes through hell getting to be pourable - so many chemicals - and you don't get the iodine because it's not in an absorbable form.

Jan. 12 2010 03:31 PM
Amy from Manhattan

1. People need to know more about the negative effects of salt/sodium.

2. More low-sodium products have to be made available in regular grocery stores (not just health food stores).

3. Food manufacturers have to stop treating "unsalted" as a flavor in itself. You can get flavors ranging from ranch dressing to chipotle in chips w/high sodium levels--why don't they put all those interesting flavors in unsalted chips?

Jan. 12 2010 12:08 PM
Nell from Brooklyn

The Mayor's lastest attack on our personal freedoms is wrong-headed and not particurally well thought. Someone should alert him to the millions of people in Japan, who use tredemous amounts of salt every day(soy sauce) and have some of the lowest rates of heart disease in the world.

Jan. 12 2010 12:05 PM
Chris Fallows from Astoria

It would be good if you get your facts straight before making statements, such as saying Progresso soups have 75% of one's recommended salt intake per 1/2 cup serving. I have a can of their "Rich & Hearty Creamy Chicken Wild Rice" soup and the sodium level reads 36% of RDA per 1 cup serving. Also, and more importantly, it seems like we're all being fed (no pun intended) propaganda about salt: it doesn't raise blood pressure in those who don't have problems with their blood pressure, necessarily. Sure, like everything it should not be over-consumed, and I agree with Mayor Bloomberg's initiative, but it seems like we should not all blindly accept the "salt myth."

Jan. 12 2010 12:05 PM
FitPro from New Jersey

Bloomberg over salting suggests that his mother was probably a terrible cook. I'll bet he puts ketchup on his eggs.

Jan. 12 2010 12:01 PM
Martha from Midtown

This is silly. For most people, it's not a problem. I eat tons of sea and kosher salt, am slim, and have very low blood pressure (I'm in my 40s). However I don't eat a lot of processed foods or junk, they're the real danger. People with hypertension etc. shouldn't be eating at McDonalds in the first place!

Jan. 12 2010 12:01 PM
emily from chelsea

Good kosher salt is a flavor-enhancer. Over-salted food is one thing, but if you want your food to taste as good as possible, it's got to have a good amount of salt. That's why food in a good restaurant tastes better than when you make it at home.

Jan. 12 2010 11:59 AM
Jake from Manhattan

Please ask your guest how much salt is in normal restaurant food. My number one complaint about (fine dining) restaurants is that the food is underseasoned (which often means undersalted).

Is restaurant food on par with prepared foods in terms of salt?

Jan. 12 2010 11:58 AM
Beth Greenfield

why do faux meat products for vegetarians have so much sodium??

Jan. 12 2010 11:58 AM
stuart from nyc

Snacks are salty so you'll buy beverages whose prices are marked-up.

Jan. 12 2010 11:58 AM
Jamison from Ft Green

why dont we teach people how to cook insted of telling them not to do some thing? Blom Berger BS

Jan. 12 2010 11:58 AM
Matt from UWS

I recall reading an article (in the NY Times?) that argued that the new research indicates that restricting salt intake isn't medically necessary for people with normal blood pressure. But you could argue that since blood pressure rises generally with age, it would be best to break people of their hyper-salt diet before they enter the danger zone.

Jan. 12 2010 11:57 AM
md in nyc

For a Republican, Bloomberg is sure fond of leading us to a nanny state.

Jan. 12 2010 11:56 AM
Larry from Nyack

I looked at the tiny bag of airplane pretzels and it had 15% of daily sodium. Why are snacks so salty?

Jan. 12 2010 11:55 AM
Jgarbuz from Queens, NY

Who elected Bloomberg to be New York's Jewish mother? Enough already!

Jan. 12 2010 11:53 AM

I'm concerned that salt will be replaced with other chemicals if these regulations come into effect. Do the regulations account for this?

Jan. 12 2010 11:52 AM
stuart from nyc

How many less shakes of salt will they leave off of the newly cooked fries at McDonalds? (I wonder if McD's requires a set number of shakes...)

Jan. 12 2010 11:51 AM

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