#FreshOnTheShelf: Cerebos launches Lite Salt in line with Be Salt Wise campaign

Cerebos has launched Cerebos Lite Salt, which contains 65% sodium chloride with 35% potassium chloride, a salt alternative that will allow consumers to make healthy lifestyle choices to reduce their salt intake. Sodium makes up 40% of conventional table salt, which increases the risk of developing high blood pressure, is the main cause of strokes and a major contributor to heart and kidney disease and diabetes.

Cerebos Lite Salt complements an existing product, Cerebos Low Salt, which, with a sodium chloride content of just 50%, has already been successfully used by both the health conscious and people with diabetes and hypertension, to improve their eating habits.

“These alternative salt products can play a similar role to sweeteners which have helped consumers reduce their sugar intake and improve their health,” says Nico Basson, head of marketing at Cerebos. “It’s about achieving a balance. Salt does play an important part in health but, like most good things, it can be harmful when used in excess.”

Salt is important for good nerve and muscle functioning. It helps control blood sugar, maintains the right levels of stomach acid needed for good digestion, reduces stress hormones and improves sleep quality, improves metabolism and encourages a healthy weight, supports healthy thyroid function and balances hormone levels. However, too much sodium in the body has been linked to high blood pressure (hypertension), which in turn increases the risk of heart disease, stroke and kidney disease.

According to the World Health Organisation, adults should consume no more than 2000 mg of sodium per day, which is equivalent to a 5 g teaspoonful of salt. South Africans’ average salt consumption is between 9.8 g and 7.8 g, depending on culture and associated eating preferences.

Be Salt Wise campaign launched

As a responsible brand, Cerebos has launched a Be Salt Wise campaign to encourage people to proactively tackle potentially fatal lifestyle choices and diseases by eating wisely. The South African government has put legislation in place to limit salt usage by manufacturers and food processors. The legislation is to reduce levels of salt in products such as bread, breakfast cereals, margarines and fat spreads, potato crisps, ready-to-eat snacks, processed meats and raw-processed meat sausages, dry soup, gravy powders and stock cubes and dry savoury powder for instant noodles. The law requires that these products will have met strict sodium targets by June 2106 with a further reduction scheduled for June 2018.

Although these ‘hidden’ sources of salt usually account for most people’s salt intake, consumers can also play an active role in ensuring that they do
not eat too much salt. “Sodium is found naturally in foods such as dairy products, eggs, meat and vegetables, but in much higher levels in ready-made and processed foods. These ‘hidden salts’ make up about 75% of the salt we consume. The first step to keeping your sodium levels is to cut down on these and eat more whole, unprocessed foods, fruit and vegetables,” Basson advises.

Many South Africans add salt to healthy foods during cooking or at the table to improve taste, which is where Cerebos Lite and Cerebos Low Salt come in. That way, consumers can still enjoy the flavour enhancement properties associated with salt, whilst maintaining healthy eating habits. This is also essential for those trying to improve poor health and improve their eating habits to better manage diabetes and hypertension. A recent study in the Western Cape found that by replacing commonly consumed foods with reduced salt products significantly reduced blood pressure.

An added plus is that Cerebos Lite and Cerebos Low Salt contain higher levels of potassium, a ‘good’ mineral that helps combat the problems that sodium chloride aggravates. Many people have low levels of potassium, which contributes towards high blood pressure and related diseases such as stroke and heart disease.

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