The ‘white stuff’… No, I am not talking about sugar; I’m talking about salt – the stuff that we sprinkle on our chips, add to our sauces, use to make bread, and use to cure meat…
Salt (sodium chloride) has long been used to preserve and flavour our food – it was even used to hide the taste of off meat! – but it’s not always helpful: although sodium is needed to keep the levels of fluid in our body as they should be, too much sodium is known to raise blood pressure. Sodium is found naturally in many foods, so it is the added salt that we particularly need to keep an eye out for.
Many of us are eating too much salt; in fact, adult eats around 9g of salt a day, when the recommended maximum daily allowance is 6g per day for adults and children aged 11 and over. For younger children, the recommended maximum daily allowance is even lower: 2g for one to three-year-olds, 3g for four to six-year-olds and 5g for seven to 10-year-olds.
Public Health England and many health charities are trying to help us to reduce our salt intake in order to improve our health and reduce the number of people dying early from heart-related diseases. The food industry has cut vast amounts of salt out of the food chain over the last decade, but we are still eating more than is healthy. We all want the best for our children, and helping them to get used to products which don’t have added salt can assist them in maintaining good habits in later life.
We often think about having a sweet tooth, but your taste buds also get used to salt. Salt is an acquired taste: if you gradually reduce salt in foods, consumers often don’t notice, but cut it fast and they soon will, so for adults, a gradual reduction is often the best way to break the habit. Babies haven’t got used to the salty taste yet, so if you start them on low or no-salt foods, they will get used to more subtle flavours. Let’s not use salt to mask natural flavours – and let’s not build a habit which could harm them.
At Tutto Bene, we want to give parents the option of convenience, but to be safe in the knowledge that products have no added salt. Our quinoa burgers, pasta and even our grissini (breadsticks) don’t have any added salt – and if you were to compare our grissini to standard supermarket breadsticks, they have one sixth of the salt per 100g (0.3g compared to 1.8g). If you were to give the Tutto Bene grissini to your little ones, they would have the chance to get used to a variety of flavours – such as tomato, broccoli and pumpkin, and purple carrot flavour – instead of salt. We are totally committed to no added salt and believe that our products provide great alternatives to salty snacks and meals.