Tuesday, 27 May 2014

Salt causes hypertension

A Consultant Cardiologist, Dr Funmilola Daniels, on Monday said that 80 per cent of salt intake by Nigerians was from processed and restaurant-prepared foods.
Daniels, who lectures at the Lagos State University Teaching Hospital, Ikeja, made the disclosure in an interview with newsmen in Lagos.
She identified salt as one of the major causes of hypertension.
``Everyone knows that eating too much salt is not good because it raises the blood pressure, yet many are still in the habit of eating too much of it.
``Lowering salt intake will also lower blood pressure and it is a major change that everybody can achieve.
``Salt is essential but the amounts that we ingest are hazardous and are raising our blood pressures,” she said.
The consultant said that healthy diets, including fresh fruits, vegetables and fresh foods rather than preserved or processed foods were important for lowering blood pressure.
She said that the challenge faced by many people was that eating fresh produce could be very expensive.
``So, instead of eating healthily, people tend to reach out for processed foods and restaurant meals as they appear to be cheaper and easily available,” she said.
Daniels said that the only way processed foods and restaurant foods could be regulated was by policies of the Federal Government.
According to her, such policies will ensure that salt is reduced in these foods and does not endanger people’s lives.
She urged the government and non-governmental organisations to continue to organise enlightenment programmes that would benefit the masses.
``These programmes will aim at educating the people on the dangers of increased salt intake and the link to high blood pressure and stroke,” she said.




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