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Sodium Reduction: The Efforts, Challenges and Successes of Policies to Reduce Sodium Intake in the U.S.

posted on Thu, Jul 18 2013 12:00 am by The Network for Public Health Law

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Thursday, July 18, 2013 at 1:00 p.m. (ET). 

An estimated 68 million adults in the U.S. suffer from high blood pressure and approximately 2,200 die from cardiovascular disease each day, and according to the American Heart Association, a diet high in sodium may be a contributing factor. Ninety percent of Americans consume more than the recommended daily intake limit of 2,300 milligrams of sodium (about one teaspoon of salt) and typically consume upwards of 3,400 mg of sodium per day (1.5 teaspoons of salt). It’s also estimated that nearly 80 percent of the sodium in the American diet comes from restaurant and processed foods that do not always taste salty or are not commonly known for including salt. Researchers estimate that reducing daily sodium intake by 1,200 mg can prevent up to 92,000 deaths and save up to $24 billion in health care costs each year.

This webinar will address the importance of sodium reduction as a public health goal in the U.S., and highlight the regulatory and voluntary efforts of government and industry; provide insight on implementation issues from the regulatory aspect and the voluntary aspect; discuss the unintended consequences of these efforts and the challenge in finding the best solutions to reduce sodium intake; and discuss successes and best practices that have resulted in notable sodium reduction measures. Presenters for this webinar represent federal and local government regulatory and health agencies, as well as the food industry, and have been directly involved in encouraging sodium reduction as a public health target.


  • (moderator) Shari Dawkins, J.D., M.P.H. , RWJF-Visiting Attorney Fellow, Public Health Law Center at William Mitchell College of Law
  • Kasey Heintz, Consumer Safety Officer in the Office of Food Additive Safety, Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition at the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA)
  • Janice Johnson, Ph.D., Applications/Technical Service Leader Salt for Cargill, Inc.
  • Jenifer Clapp, Project Manager at New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene for National Salt Reduction Initiative (NSRI)
  • Tara Dimick, Kansas Department of Health