How much salt is in your meal deal snack?

Research by Action on Salt, released last week as part of Salt Awareness Week has shown that 70% of snacks that are sold as part of a meal deal are high in saturated fat, sugar and salt. Some of the snacks contained a third of the daily recommended limit of 6g.

Salt raises blood pressure and causes stroke and heart attacks, which are the biggest cause of death in the UK. As 1 in 3 of us buy a meal deal at least once per week the nutrient content of these snacks can have a big impact on our health.  It is important for us to be aware of what is in what we are eating as well as the food industry to make changes to the foods they produce to help us.

Action for Salt are putting pressure on the government to introduce stronger measure to make sure the food industry adapts their products to meet salt target, with penalties for those who do not meet these standards.

The research also showed that 63% of the products analysed had a health related message on the packaging even though 70% were actually high in saturated fat, sugar and salt. These messages are misleading and can make us think what we are eating is healthy.

Graham MacGregor, Professor of Cardiovascular Medicine at Queen Mary University of London, and Chairman of Action on Salt, said:

“Reducing salt is the most cost-effective measure for lowering blood pressure and reducing the number of people suffering and dying from strokes, heart disease and life changing disabilities associated with this – all of which is completely avoidable. Given the fact that food companies have the very simple option to reformulate with less salt and help prevent the many thousands of people who currently die unnecessarily, it’s remarkable that very few companies choose this option. This is why the Government must enforce its comprehensive salt reduction targets without delay.”


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