Children who regularly consume excessively high levels of salt could put their future health at risk, claims the Health Supplement Information Service (HSIS).
Salt is commonly added to foods children love, like fast foods, snacks and ready-made pasta. Figures show that daily salt intake among seven to 14-year-olds was 6.4g for boys and 5.6g for girls. The recommended daily salt intake for adults is 6g a day.
Researchers worryingly admit they underestimated salt levels in the past as they didn't account for salt used in cooking or at the dinner table.
There is mounting evidence that problems with child nutrition can significantly contribute to chronic and degenerative diseases such as type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease and cancer.
Independent dietitian and public health nutritionist Dr Carrie Ruxton said: "There remains a clear need to improve children's diets to safeguard their future health.
"Higher intakes of fruit, vegetables, oily fish and wholegrains would help children to meet dietary and nutrient targets."
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