HealthLawProf Blog

Editor: Katharine Van Tassel
Concordia University School of Law

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

AMA: Policing Salt

The American Medical Association wants the food instrustry to reduce the amount of sodium in processed foods by at least 50 percent and and wants the Food and Drug Administration to place warning labels on foods that are high in salt.  According to an article at

On a voice vote, AMA delegates adopted the policy at their five-day annual meeting, which ends Wednesday. Getting the food industry to gradually reduce sodium content in foods by at least half over the next decade is the goal of the new policy.

The policy also calls for the AMA to ask the FDA to revoke the "generally recognized as safe" (GRAS) status of salt.  . . . .

The American Heart Association recommends limiting sodium intake to less than 2,300 milligrams daily, or less than about one teaspoon, but the average daily intake among U.S. adults is nearly double that amount, the report said.

The AMA report said there is overwhelming evidence that excessive sodium intake is a risk factor for hypertension and may be an independent risk factor for other cardiovascular problems.

More than 30 percent of U.S. adults have high blood pressure, and cardiovascular disease is the nation's leading cause of death.

For an overview of some of the other policy positions the AMA adopted at its annual conference, including increasing mental health services on college campuses, promoting new methods to increase organ donation, and a temporary moratorium on direct-to-consumer advertising on new prescription drugs, click here. [bm]

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