Sodium Intake Down by 20% Over 5 Years

By Choi Won-woo | December 21, 2016 10:25

Koreans' intake of salt has dropped about 20 percent over the past five years.

The average daily sodium intake per person fell 19.1 percent from 4,785 mg in 2010 to 3,871 mg last year, the Korea Health Promotion Foundation said on Sunday.

Sodium intake peaked at 5,260 mg per day in 2005 and hovered around 4,600 to 4,800 mg until 2012 when the government came up with an initiative to reduce salt consumption. The figure then dropped to 4,012 mg in 2013 and 3,874 mg in 2014.

According to a study, the main reason for the drop was a decrease in the sodium content of kimchi and processed foods.

However, Koreans' sodium intake is still nearly twice the daily level of 2,000 mg recommended by the World Health Organization.

Doctors say that excessive salt intake can cause hypertension, stroke and heart attack and increase the risk of gastric cancer, osteoporosis, asthma and obesity.

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