Min­istry takes ac­tion to cut public sodium in­take


The Min­istry of Food, Agri­cul­ture and Light In­dus­try (MFALI) kicked off the Mea­sure to Sup­port Low-Salt Prod­ucts Pro­duc­tion on Thursday in an ef­fort to mod­er­ate the av­er­age sodium in­take of the public.

The mea­sure will be car­ried out in the next two years and is aimed to re­duce sodium content in prod­ucts, de­velop a stan­dard and reg­u­la­tion on sodium us­age, and en­cour­age the public to con­sume less salt for the sake of their health and longevity.

More than 150 rep­re­sen­ta­tives from MFALI, Min­istry of Health and other en­ti­ties took part in Thursday’s in­tro­duc­tory ses­sion of the mea­sure.

WHO guide­lines rec­om­mend salt in­take of less than five grams per day for adults to re­duce blood pres­sure and risk of car­dio­vas­cu­lar dis­ease, stroke and coro­nary heart at­tack. How­ever, most Mon­go­lians con­sume 2.5 times more salt than the rec­om­mended max­i­mum level of in­take, specif­i­cally 11.5 to 11.5 grams per day on av­er­age, ac­cord­ing to B.Enkhtun­galag, a nutritionist at the National Public Health Cen­ter.

B.Enkhtun­galag stated that peo­ple liv­ing in different prov­inces have different lev­els of salt in­take a day. For ex­am­ple, peo­ple liv­ing in Uvs, Khovd and Bayan-Ul­gii prov­inces con­sume 15 grams of salt a day, while peo­ple liv­ing in Dornod and Sukhbaatar con­sume 7.7 grams a day.

“Ex­actly 77 per­cent of to­tal deaths among the pop­u­la­tion is caused by non com­mu­ni­ca­ble dis­ease, such as high blood pres­sure, car­dio­vas­cu­lar dis­ease, heart at­tack, and brain stroke, which are at­trib­uted to high sodium in­take. Based on this, it’s ab­so­lutely nec­es­sary to re­duce the daily sodium in­take of the public,” she said.

Public and pri­vate or­ga­ni­za­tions are re­port­edly work­ing to­gether on the Mea­sure to Sup­port LowSalt Prod­ucts Pro­duc­tion, ini­ti­at­ing new ac­tions to achieve the gov­ern­ment tar­get to lower sodium in­take by 30 per­cent by the year 2025.

“To achieve this tar­get, sodium content in public food and in­dus­tri­ally-made food prod­ucts must de­crease by 40 per­cent. The pri­vate sec­tor has been ac­tively shar­ing ideas in this di­rec­tion. For in­stance, Talkh Chikher Com­pany cut sodium content in 10 types of prod­ucts in 2011. Makh Mar­ket Com­pany low­ered the sodium content in three types of prod­uct by 40 to 60 per­cent in 2014. Good prac­tices like these need to be shared with other com­pa­nies,” B.Enkhtun­galag noted.

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