Reducing salt 'would cut cancer'

 
Salt on bread Salt is in many foods, such as bread.

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Cutting back on salty foods such as bacon, bread and breakfast cereals may reduce people's risk of developing stomach cancer, according to the World Cancer Research Fund (WCRF).

It wants people to eat less salt and for the content of food to be labelled more clearly.

In the UK, the WCRF said one-in-seven stomach cancers would be prevented if people kept to daily guidelines.

Cancer Research UK said this figure could be even higher.

Too much salt is bad for blood pressure and can lead to heart disease and stroke, but it can also cause cancer.

The recommended daily limit is 6g, about a level teaspoonful, but the World Cancer Research Fund said people were eating 8.6g a day.

Undetected

There are around 6,000 cases of stomach cancer every year in the UK. The WCRF estimated that 14% of cases, around 800, could be avoided if everyone stuck to their 6g a day.

Kate Mendoza, head of health information at WCRF, said: "Stomach cancer is difficult to treat successfully because most cases are not caught until the disease is well-established.

Katharine Jenner from Consensus Action on Salt and Health, says eating less than six grammes of salt could prevent stroke and cancer deaths

"This places even greater emphasis on making lifestyle choices to prevent the disease occurring in the first place - such as cutting down on salt intake and eating more fruit and vegetables."

Eating too much salt is not all about sprinkling it over fish and chips or Sunday lunch, the vast majority is already inside food.

It is why the WCRF has called for a "traffic-light" system for food labelling - red for high, amber for medium and green for low.

However, this has proved controversial with many food manufacturers and supermarkets preferring other ways of labelling food.

Lucy Boyd, from Cancer Research UK, said: "This research confirms what a recently published report from Cancer Research UK has shown - too much salt also contributes considerably to the number of people getting stomach cancer in the UK.

"On average people in Britain eat too much salt and intake is highest in men.

"Improved labelling - such as traffic light labelling - could be a useful step to help consumers cut down."

A spokesman for the Department of Health said: "We already know too much salt can lead to conditions such as heart disease and stroke. That is why we are taking action through the 'Responsibility Deal' to help reduce the salt in people's diets. And we are looking at clearer... labelling on foods as part of our consultation on front-of-pack labelling.

"We keep these findings under review alongside other emerging research in the field."

 

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  • rate this
    +1

    Comment number 179.

    @ 117.Diddleypete

    "Bigger picture people, there are to many of us & living longer isnt helping."

    Surely it is better to reduce the birth rate than to encourage more people to die?

  • rate this
    -1

    Comment number 178.

    So... the BBC is reporting that doctors risk giving people cancer when they treat their patients with an intravenous saline solution (salt)? Are all doctors aware of this 'fact' auntie?

  • rate this
    +3

    Comment number 177.

    Try cutting all the salt from your diet and see (a) how long you live and (b) how painfully you die...

  • rate this
    +2

    Comment number 176.

    @168
    "The cynic in me says any lobbying like this must have a client. Who is it?"
    __

    Well, the article refers to research funded by WCRF and by Cancer Research UK. Each of these organisations says on their websites that they are funded by public donations. So the evil client lurking in the background is the general public, and the covert ulterior motive is the prevention of cancer. Scandalous!

  • rate this
    0

    Comment number 175.

    I could be wrong, but I believe too much salt causes high blood pressure by increasing the number of Na & Cl ions in our bloodstream. These ions attract water molecules, which form in a specific pattern around the ions. This increases the spacing between the water molecules and therefore increases the volume of the blood, leading to higher pressure.

    Isn't that interesting? What do you mean "No"?

  • rate this
    0

    Comment number 174.

    The problem here is that there is little regulation, and what there is is manipulated by the industry. The traffic light system would work, but won't be implemented, and the government won't enforce its implemenation. Result? People don't know what information to trust. The solution? Make your own food, because you can't trust businesses to look after you.

  • rate this
    +1

    Comment number 173.

    160.
    SwampPuppet

    Do you suffer from water retention, high blood pressure, and feel thirsty all the time? Too much salt.
    Getting cramp, suffer incontinence or nervousness? Not enough salt.

    You don't need a doctor or a scientist. You just need to be sensible. Too much of anything will kill you.

    //////////

    Well, I wish what I like best would kill me..... but as a single bloke, I doubt it. lol

  • rate this
    +2

    Comment number 172.

    whoa whoa whoa - at least drop the bacon bombshell a bit further down the article

  • rate this
    +17

    Comment number 171.

    All stories like this lead me to conclude that my education was lacking and that society is happy with the idea that we should be stupid. Because health stories are always scaremongering, without detailed figures and never presented in context. I bet you that Victorian newspapers had more technical content than today's news. Dumbing down has led to an infantile society being lectured by experts.

  • rate this
    +1

    Comment number 170.

    lets all agree now once your born every thing you do ,touch,eat and drink will kill you but do we need scientists ramming it down our throats. i think not the human animal is not a hygene freak will eat crap and try to spoil the world around it its human nature we have to fight against and modern man aint got the fight.

  • rate this
    +11

    Comment number 169.

    Is there anything that you can eat these days that won't bloomin' well kill you?

    Leave me in peace please.

  • rate this
    +3

    Comment number 168.

    The cynic in me says any lobbying like this must have a client. Who is it? Who intends to benefit from these new labels? is it label printers, food processors, or is it just attracting attention in the hope of higher donations?

    Doesn't matter, I can't see a benefit for me in that. All that may happen is that supermarkets will prefer to stock "green" products regarding of how bad they will be.

  • rate this
    +4

    Comment number 167.

    NEWS FLASH! - 'Anything' in excess 'can' be bad for you!

    Now... can we please read some 'proper' news auntie?

  • rate this
    -4

    Comment number 166.

    I don't use salt in any type of cooking, I eat 'eau natural' and don't put it on my food, I eat out once a month sometimes when I can afford it, which is usually fish and chips or scampi and chips, no salt, I make my own meals, I eat 3 slices of wholemeal bread a day, I sometimes have brown sauce on my food. Manufacturers should cut the salt content in there food, it can be done.

  • rate this
    0

    Comment number 165.

    What I can't understand is...... Blood, tears, sweat, amniotic fluid are all salty, we evolved from the sea. So why is salt bad for us?

  • rate this
    +2

    Comment number 164.

    Crikey...cereals are a staple diet of 99.9% of kids who's parents can still afford a decent breakfast..manufacturers at fault!

  • rate this
    0

    Comment number 163.

    @160

    "Do you suffer from water retention, high blood pressure, and feel thirsty all the time? Too much salt. Getting cramp, suffer incontinence or nervousness? Not enough salt. You don't need a doctor or a scientist."
    __

    Right, so you don't need a doctor or a scientist to tell you things that doctors and scientists have already discovered and are now accepted wisdom. And to discover new things?

  • rate this
    +1

    Comment number 162.

    The problem is that a reasonable proportion of goods sold in our supermarkets that contain salt have no indication on their labels of how much they contain.

  • rate this
    +4

    Comment number 161.

    "100.Shoogly Peg
    Too much salt? Ban so called "sports drinks" - as they contain salts as part of their electrolyte solution."

    Which if you are involved in active sports you may actually need as you lose salts during certain exercise. This is the problem with the statistcally generated RDAs, the don't apply to you, but to the statistical average.

  • rate this
    +3

    Comment number 160.

    Do you suffer from water retention, high blood pressure, and feel thirsty all the time? Too much salt.
    Getting cramp, suffer incontinence or nervousness? Not enough salt.

    You don't need a doctor or a scientist. You just need to be sensible. Too much of anything will kill you.

 

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