How much salt can children eat

How much salt can children eat? Salt makes food tasty, but it can be harmful in large quantities. You’ve probably heard that high salt intake has negative health effects, as it is associated with an increased risk of hypertension and other chronic illnesses. What is perhaps less well known, however, is that the effects of over-salting can occur very early.

Therefore, limiting salt intake should not only be a goal for adults, but also for children, and especially in the early years of life, when the kidney system is not fully “mature” so that it can be managed effectively large quantities of salt.

On the other hand, we must not forget that the eating habits formed during childhood are very likely to be maintained in adulthood. Thus, the more a child gets used to the salty taste, the harder it will be to change that taste in the future.

Therefore, it would be advisable to limit salt to family meals, especially given the fact that many packaged and processed foods we eat daily contain large amounts of salt.

In childhood

Particularly during the first year of life, increased salt intake may affect renal function, and therefore salt should not be added to food, the use of cubes and broths in the preparation of soup or other foods, and the consumption of processed foods. high-salt foods.

However, even after the first year, when the child gradually begins to consume the same food as the rest of the family, it would be advisable to limit the use of salt. At the same time, it is important for parents to check the labels of packaged products so that they do not provide the child with “secret” sources of sodium or foods high in sodium.

In adolescence

Leaving childhood and into adolescence, scientific evidence now shows that teens often consume much higher doses of salt than adults. This was shown in a study published in the journal Pediatrics.

In this study, done in 766 adolescents, 97% of them reported sodium intake that exceeded the daily recommended dose. These individuals also had high levels of various inflammatory factors and markers of future obesity.

As the researchers point out, the findings should bolster the efforts of both parents and nutritionists to limit the amount of salt consumed by a child or adolescent. At this point, it should also be noted that a child will not only get the salt from what he or she puts into their food but also large quantities of out-of-home food – fast food, delivery, crisps, shrimp, ready-made cheese pies and more.

The Recommended Daily Intake (Sodium) of Salt or Sodium for Children, by Age:

  • 1-3 years: 2 g salt, 0,8 g sodium salt
  • 4-6 years: 3 g salt, 1.2 g sodium salt
  • 7 – 10 years: 5 g salt, 2 g sodium salt
  • 11 years and over: 6 grams salt, 2,4 grams sodium

Note: One teaspoon corresponds to five grams

Where the salt is hidden

  • We must not forget the danger of salt being absorbed due to its secret sources, some of which are:
  • Cheese (eg slice)
  • Meat and sausages
  • Salty snacks (eg biscuits, salted nuts, crisps, etc.)
  • Salted nuts
  • Ready popcorn
  • Ready powdered soups
  • Cooking cubes
  • Smoked foods and preserves
  • Soy sauce
  • Delivery (skewer, pizza

How much salt can children eat

Dinesh Gamage

Scientist | Designer | Developer | Blogger

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