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HHS HealthBeat (April 24, 2013)

Salted toddler food

HHS HealthBeat: A baby eating food.

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Sodium and Food

From the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, I’m Ira Dreyfuss with HHS HealthBeat.

Processed food often has a lot of sodium – commonly, salt – and a study by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention indicates this includes toddler food.

Joyce Maalouf says that, while baby food was relatively low in sodium, that wasn’t often the case with toddler food:

“Toddler meals and snacks in general had a significantly higher amount of sodium compared to baby meals.”

She says there was too much sodium in about 75 percent of toddler food, which is often like the stuff adults eat, such as pasta dishes and savory snacks. 

Researchers suspect starting toddlers on overly salty foods sets up taste patterns that could lead in adulthood to high blood pressure and diseases connected to it.

The study was presented at an American Heart Association conference.

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HHS HealthBeat is a production of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. I’m Ira Dreyfuss.

Last revised: May 2, 2013