Salt has come under the limelight recently with research from the University of Otago suggesting a salt tax, among other interventions, would result in a healthier New Zealand population due to its effect on heart disease and stroke risk, and a less financial burden on our health system.
It’s a salient fact we do eat too much salt, namely as sodium with 75% coming from packaged, processed food leaving the rest to what we add during cooking and at the dinner table. Is it a habit of yours? A pinch of salt here and another there, with your palate becoming accustomed to the enhancement salt brings to a dish. Salt does have an important role and has been used for centuries as an effective preservative extending shelf-life, hence food safety. But it’s when a diet is packaged-food heavy, that the ‘hidden’ salt can be over-consumed without you realising.
There is work happening behind the scenes to address the sodium content of a number of foods with some significant results, of note the processed meat industry have removed 34 tonnes of salt annually from ham, bacon and sausages. There are also tools to help us when doing the grocery shopping – smartphone apps, including Foodswitch
which has a Salt Switch mode to help identify foods with the lowest salt content, as well as the Heart Foundation Tick on-pack to flag foods that meet strict criteria for sodium and fat, and more recently sugar.
We at Beef + Lamb New Zealand are very aware there are more of you who are watching their salt intake, among other nutrients, that’s why we have analysed our recipes and provided a full breakdown of nutrients including sodium. There are currently over 70 low salt meal ideas at recipes.co.nz
if you search ‘low sodium’. Beef and lamb are naturally low sodium foods, but it’s the added ingredients such as stock, soy sauce, fish sauce and anchovies that can bump up the salt content of a dish. There are reduced salt versions of some stocks and sauces, just keep an eye out and if you can gradually reduce your added salt in the kitchen in the table, you’ll be doing your family’s arteries a favour.
Click here for this recipe - Baked Lamb Shoulder Chops