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World Action on Salt & Health

World Salt Awareness Week menu

How to get involved

Reduce your own salt intake

Follow our 5 steps to 5 grams

  • Slowly reduce the amount of salt you use while cooking – your taste buds will adapt
  • Use herbs, spices, lemon, garlic and fresh chilli when cooking to add flavour in place of salt
  • Drain and rinse canned vegetables and beans – they may be stored in salted water!
  • Check food labels to check salt levels and choose the lower salt option. No nutrition labels? Write to the manufacturer to ask why!
  • Take salt shakers and salty sauces off the table so younger family members don’t develop the habit of adding salt to their food

Swap high salt ingredients for lower salt alternatives

  • Tinned tuna in brine → tinned tuna in water
  • Smoked salmon → fresh oily fish
  • Ham and cheese sandwich filling → fresh sliced chicken and salad
  • Salted butter → unsalted butter
  • Prepacked salted popcorn → fresh popped unflavoured popcorn
  • Salad dressings or mayonnaise → Fresh herbs, balsamic vinegar or lemon juice
  • Instant noodles → make your own with plain noodles, vegetables and fish or meat
  • Pizza with high salt toppings e.g. anchovies, olives, pepperoni, marinated meats → Pizza with lower salt topping e.g. grilled chicken, peppers, mushrooms, sweetcorn

Write to your favourite restaurants and ask them to provide lower salt options

Write to your favourite brands and ask them to reduce salt in their products

Talk to WASH

Throughout the week we will be communicating via our social media channels. Use the hashtag #SaltAwarenessWeek so that we can see your posts!

Have you reduced the amount of salt in your diet? Was it easy to do or did you find it challenging? Share your story with us – it might be featured on our website and we’ll share these stories with manufacturers during our meetings with them. 

Engage Policy Makers

  • Write to your local elected government representative and ask them what they are doing to reduce salt in food
  • Write to the Department/Ministry of Health or equivalent to demand a strong salt reduction programme to benefit your health, and the health of the next generation!
  • Arrange an event with health experts, the food industry, policy makers and the media. Arrange for speakers to give short presentations and encourage discussions on salt and health
  • Write to your local health authority to ask how they are addressing levels of salt in food sold in your community

Resources

Use our resources or create your own!

  • Print off posters, leaflets or flyers to hand out to local health centres, pharmacies, libraries, schools, universities
  • Create an educational video and share on social media. Check out this video from our colleagues in Costa Rica, or this video from the British Heart Foundation

Event Ideas

  • Try running some cookery demonstrations with taste testing sessions and provide some low salt recipes to convince people that LOW salt doesn’t mean LOW flavour
  • Organise a quiz on the effects that salt has on health and the simple ways to reduce salt intake
  • Arrange a webinar with health and salt reduction experts who can answer questions from the public
  • Create a notice board in your school canteen, your workplace or a local library. Use our poster (coming soon!) and other materials to raise awareness of salt
  • Set up a stall or information point in your local supermarket. Engage people in conversations to raise awareness of salt in food and the effect of salt on health. Share tips on how to reduce salt intake and share resources (see here for ideas – translations are available!)
  • If you are trained in blood pressure measurements, offer free blood pressure readings at your workplace and encourage people to lower their salt intake
  • Arrange local events in schools, universities or community centres with displays highlighting salt levels in food. Run practical activities:
    • guessing how much salt is in a meal*
    • arranging a selection of meals from highest to lowest salt content*
    • spooning out how much salt you think is 6g or how much is in a meal*

* Use products such as ready meals, pizza, cheese and pickle sandwich, ham roll or a bowl of breakfast cereal with milk

If you do hold a local event, make sure you email us some photos wash@qmul.ac.uk or tweet us @WASHSALT

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