Children's diets 'are too salty'

Children in the UK are eating far too much salt, with much of it coming from breads and cereals, research suggests.

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Children eating too much salt, study shows

Children aged five and six are eating 0.75 grams more salt than the recommended daily amount and teens are exceeding the limit by around 1.5 grams, researchers claim.

The recommended daily levels of salt according to age are as follows:

  • One to two years - 2g salt per day (0.8g sodium)
  • Four to six years - 3g salt per day (1.2g sodium)
  • Seven to 10 years - 5g salt per day (2g sodium)
  • 11 years and over - 6g salt per day (2.4g sodium)

The study showed that 36% of children's intake of salt comes from a combination of bread-based and cereal products, while meat provided an additional 19%.

An example of salt levels in popular foods (taken from a sample of popular brands):

  • Children's cereal: around 0.3g salt per 30g
  • A slice of white bread: around 0.35g salt per slice
  • Pork sausages: around 0.3g per sausage
  • Ready salted crisps: around 0.45g per packet

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