Viet Nam News
HÀ NỘI – Vietnamese people need to change their eating habits, experts warn after it was revealed locals consume almost double the daily dose of salt they should.
During a press conference held by the Ministry of Health’s Preventive Medicine Department and the World Health Organisation (WHO) yesterday in Hà Nội, results of a 2015 survey showed the average adult consumes 9.4g of salt per day.
WHO recommends a daily intake of 5g as high salt intake can cause high blood pressure, cerebrovascular accident, heart diseases and other non-communicable diseases.
Trương Đình Bắc, the Ministry of Health’s Preventive Medicine department’s deputy director said this is a worry – and may be harmful to people’s health.
The data showed that one in five adults in Việt Nam has hypertension and one in three cases of death is related to cardiovascular disease and mainly death due to brain stroke, he said.
According to Bắc, 77 per cent of salt intake in developed countries comes mainly from processed and restaurant food. But in Việt Nam, most salt intake comes from home cooking or salt is added to food while eating in Việt Nam.
Nguyễn Kim Dung, a woman in Đống Đa District, said her family often eats salty food.
She said she knows the use of large amounts of salt when cooking was not good for people’s health but it was difficult to change the habit.
“We often added more salt to food when we cook at home. And I will try to change,” Dung said.
A representative of WHO said the world was taking too much salt, about 10g per day (according to figure in 2010) and most people ate more salt than they need.
The number of people who would suffer cardiovascular and non-communicable diseases or even death every year would drop by around 2.5 million people if people drop their daily intake to less than 5g.
WHO has issued a guideline for changing salt eating practices and encouraged countries to adopt to have plans for salt consumption.
It also recommended Việt Nam should strengthen communication on reducing salt intake, managing hypertension and diabetes and health warnings.
Under WHO recommendations, the Preventive Medicine Department is currently working on a national communication plan to reduce salt intake.
The health ministry also recommends everyone should reduce salt in home food, eat fresh food and cut down the processed food. – VNS