In a response to new US dietary federal guidelines, the group claims the recommendations ignore recent research that low salt diets could increase rates of diabetes in addition to other health risks. The group notes U.S. dietary guidelines that recommend sodium intake of less than 2,300 mg and 1,500 mg among persons who are 51 and older, and all African American, anyone with hypertension, diabetes, or chronic kidney disease applies to half of the population.
They also say reducing salt intake per Federal guidelines issued Monday could increase obesity rates and diabetes. The impetus behind the dietary guidelines is to lower rates of hypertension, but the Salt Institute says obesity is to blame, not dietary sodium. According to the group, the new recommendations are “drastic, simplistic and unrealistic”.
“These guidelines are a classic example of ‘Ready, Fire, Aim’ by the federal food police,“ said Lori Roman, president of the Salt Institute, which represents the salt industry. “While increasing obesity and hypertension rates are health concerns we can all share, it’s simplistic and dangerous to attack salt, an essential nutrient.”
The Salt Institute cites a recent Harvard study linking low salt diets to increased insulin resistance that precedes diabetes type 2. They also speculate reducing sodium will lead to more calories consumed to satisfy an innate appetite for salt.