CDC report finds sodium consumption high among US children
More than 40 percent of sodium comes from 10 common types of food
More than 90 percent of U.S. children, aged 6-18 years, eat more sodium than recommended, putting them at risk for developing high blood pressure and heart disease later in life, according to a new CDC Vital Signsreport.
This report provides the most recent data detailing how much sodium school-age children eat and where it comes from. Using data from CDC’s 2009-2010 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, CDC researchers determined that about 43 percent of sodium eaten by children comes from the 10 foods they eat most often: pizza, bread and rolls, cold cuts/cured meats, savory snacks, sandwiches, cheese, chicken patties/nuggets/tenders, pasta mixed dishes, Mexican mixed dishes, and soups.
“Too many children are consuming way too much sodium, and the result will be risks of high blood pressure and heart disease in the future,” said CDC Director Tom Frieden, M.D., M.P.H. “Most sodium is from processed and restaurant food, not the salt shaker. Reducing sodium intake will help our children avoid tragic and expensive health problems.”
To help reduce the amount of sodium children are consuming daily, parents and caregivers, as well as schools, communities, and places that sell, make or serve food, are all encouraged to take steps to ensure more low-sodium options. For example, parents can establish healthy eating habits in their children by providing a diet high in fruits and vegetables without added sodium.