Pune, Maharashtra, India, October 04, 2012 : “In India, salt caused high blood pressure or hypertension, which was responsible for 57% of deaths due to stroke and 24% of deaths caused by heart attack” says Ms Kanchan Naikawadi, Director Operations, Indus Health Plus
“The rising trend in the consumption of processed food in India has led to a 24-30% prevalence of hypertension in urban areas, and 12-14% in rural areas” says Ms. KanchanNaikawadi, Director Operations, Indus Health Plus
No we are not talking about your commitment to your work, nor are we questioning your loyalty towards your personal relationships. What we are concerned about instead is how much and what type of salt (namak!) you consume on a daily basis, the answer to which will determine the imminent health risks staring at you.
HEALTH EFFECTS OF EXCESS SALT CONSUMPTION
Ms. Kanchan Naikawadi, Director Operations, Indus Health Plus, one of the leading Preventive Healthcare Organisation said “Even though research on the association between excess salt consumption and various health issues is limited, existing studies indicate that some of the long term health effects include stroke and cardiovascular disease, high blood pressure/ hypertension, left ventricular hypertrophy (cardiac enlargement), oedema and stomach cancer. In India, salt caused high blood pressure or hypertension, which was responsible for 57% of deaths due to stroke and 24% of deaths caused by heart attack. According to the World Health Organisation, 62% of all strokes and 49% of heart disease events can be attributed to high blood pressure.”
One of the chemical components of salt, is sodium, which makes blood vessels less able to expand and contract and may toughen heart cells. Research on salt consumption suggests that reducing dietary salt intake to 3 grams per day (1,200 mg of sodium per day) could reduce the annual number of heart disease by 60,000, stroke by 32,000 and myocardial infarction by 54,000. It could also reduce annual number of deaths by any cause by 44,000. Also a 3 g per day reduction can bring down blood pressure by 2.5/1.4 mm Hg, and a 6 g per day reduction by 5/2.8 mm Hg. Conversely an increase of 5 g in daily salt intake was found to be associated with a 23% higher risk of stroke and 17% risk of cardiovascular disease.
SALT CONSUMPTION IN INDIA
The average intake of salt in many developed countries including India is above 9 g., as against the WHO recommended (1985) norm of 5 g. While processed food is the dominant source for salt unrestricted and uninformed use also contributes, in addition to the processed food, to the higher salt intake in India and other developing countries.
Ms. Kanchan Naikawadi said “The rising trend in the consumption of processed food in India has led to a 24-30% prevalence of hypertension in urban areas, and 12-14% in rural areas.”
Another health issue that afflicts the Indian population with regard to salt consumption is Iodine Deficiency Disorder (IDD). Iodine deficiency affects about 200 crore all over the world and leads to mental retardation.
Ms. Kanchan Naikawadi further said “In India about 7.1 crore people are suffering from Iodine Deficiency Disorders. One of the worst affected states is Maharashtra with 62 lakh people suffering from IDD which leads to sub-clinical deficiencies like mental retardation and lack of concentration.”
Iodised salt is salt mixed with a minute amount of potassium iodide, sodium iodide, or sodium iodate.
SALT CONSUMPTION & PREVENTION
To reiterate the importance of the advantages of reduced salt intake, India can reduce incidents of stroke by 25% and heart attacks by 10% by cutting down on salt consumption. It is also noteworthy that the sodium potassium ratio in our body is important for stroke mortality. Potassium is gained through the consumption of fruits and vegetables mostly. Therefore in case of the Indians who consume less of potassium and more of salt, the risk for stroke is higher.
Ms. Kanchan Naikawadi further mentioned “A 15-year study has found that sticking to a diet low on salt reduces the risk of cardiac arrest and stroke by 25% and chances of premature death by 20%. The study also suggests that if everyone consumed half a teaspoon less salt per day, there would be between 54,000 and 99,000 fewer heart attacks each year and between 44,000 and 92,000 fewer deaths. As examples a three-decade-long effort by Finland to reduce sodium levels by about 30% has resulted in 75% reduction in cardiovascular disease in those under 65 years and stroke rates have fallen by more than 70% in Japan.”
For information about Indus Health Plus's health checkup packages, Preventive medical health checkup services, visit http://www.indushealthplus.com/ or call at +91-20-6647 2500.
About Indus Health Plus :
An ISO-9001-2008 certified company; Indus Health Plus, http://www.indushealthplus.com/, has set up strategic alliances with well-equipped and renowned delivery partners in 26 Indian cities across 48 centres. Indus Health Plus has been rapidly expanding its network of delivery centres and has reached out to three lakh people through a host of preventive master health checkup packages, especially designed to meet all their preventive healthcare requirements.
Mrs. Smita Unnikrishnan,
Indus Health Plus ,
Pride Port, Model Colony, Shivaji Nagar,
Pune, Maharastra – 411016