Continued high levels of salt consumption are increasing the risks of high blood pressure, stroke and heart disease. The tally for treating those and other diet-related issues is threatening to bankrupt health systems.
Referring to a report published in the April 16th issue of the Canadian Medical Association Journal, Dr. Normal Campbell said:
These high levels [of sodium] indicate failure of the current government approach that leaves salt reduction solely in the hands of industry. Salt reduction programs need to guide industry and oversee it with targets and timelines for foods, monitoring and evaluation, and stronger regulatory measures if the structured voluntary efforts are not effective.
Health Minister Leona Aglukkaq is consistent. She continues to ignore expert advice on food policy, particularly if it entails holding the food industry to higher standards. As Sarah Schmidt points out in her article for Postmedia News:
Aglukkaq objected to the plan because it would have outed food companies for failing to meet specific sodium-reduction targets for individual products, and called for regulations to be considered if voluntary measures fail.
The food industry must love having a health minister on their side. It is too bad Canadians don’t have one on theirs.
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