You gotta love New York. It's really looking out for its New Yorkers with bans on smoking, bans on trans fat, posting calorie counts on menus, and now, NY is tackling salt. Most of the salt Americans consume comes from the processed foods we eat — not from the extra salt we sprinkle on. So New York officials are meeting with food makers to discuss ways they can cut back on the sodium they use in prepared and processed foods such as soups, pasta sauce, salad dressing, and bread.
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Unlike sugar, there's no substitute for salt, and many foods such as cream soups just won't taste the same without it. For that reason, the food industry is hoping the request to reduce salt in foods will be voluntary, not mandatory. New York's salt initiative has a goal of cutting salt content in foods by 20 percent within five years, which is modeled after a plan carried out in Britain. The belief is that if salt content is reduced gradually over time, our taste buds will get used to the flavor of less salty foods.
The daily recommended intake for salt is 2,300 mg, and a high salt diet can raise blood pressure, which raises a person's risk for heart disease. Critics say that not everyone is sensitive to a high salt diet, so they don't agree with this government intervention. What's your opinion? Do you think New York should demand that the food industry reduces its salt content in foods or should it be up to New Yorkers to make healthy choices for themselves?