The fight for better health continues, and as a first of its kind decision, NYC will be putting salt warning labels on meals, which will provide both New Yorkers and tourists with better information on what kind of food they’re ordering when venturing through restaurants.
The New York City Board of Health was unanimous on the decision to have menus come with the warning label of high sodium for each of their dishes, be it flagged as inappropriate or to simply inform the consumer. This may lead to a few revelations as to how unhealthy your favorite food actually is. That seems to be both fortunate and unfortunate at the same time.
The vote was met with mixed reactions, though the public health organizations, including the American Heart Association, certainly seemed enthusiastic about the new measure to improve the lives of people in New York, by allowing them to make informed decisions on their diets.
Starting in December this year, along with ingredients and calorie content (that a few feature on their menus), one third of restaurants will detail the sodium levels within their prepared meals, which will allow consumers to make healthier decisions.
According to executive director for the Center for Science in the Public Interest, Michael Jacobson, “public health could do more to save lives”, and hopefully help improve the diets of American citizens by providing them with proper information to make their dietary decisions.
The daily recommended salt intake stands at 2,3000 milligrams of sodium, which is equal to a teaspoon, but is highly surpassed by the average citizen, which is approximately 3,400 milligrams per day. Most of it is reportedly taken from processed or restaurant food, which is why the new regulation will become active come winter.
Overconsumption of salt and high levels of sodium causes risk of high blood pressure and heart problems, the latter of which is the lead cause of death in the United States. And, yet, most of the meals contain more salt in one serving than it’s recommended for the entire day, which while it gives food that extra delicious factor, is in fact, dangerously unhealthy.
For example, one Subway footlong of Spicy Italian Sub has 2,980 milligrams of sodium.
Naturally, producers and restaurant owners have not declared themselves happy with the measure, as this might harm their business, and might only serve to cause confusion among customers.
Movie theaters might even resort to stop serving products such as salt-encrusted soft pretzels instead of bothering to slap on a label warning of the sodium content. However, even the bigger buckets of popcorn have a 2,300 milligrams of sodium, so that is within limits as a healthy option for movie goers… provided you will not eat anything else with salt that day.
Image source: takepart.com