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Nutrients 2015, 7(6), 4054-4067; doi:10.3390/nu7064054

Changes in the Sodium Content of New Zealand Processed Foods: 2003–2013

1
Heart Foundation of New Zealand, PO Box 17160, Greenlane, Auckand 1546, New Zealand
2
National Institute for Health Innovation, The University of Auckland, Private Bag 92019, Auckland 1142, New Zealand
3
Epidemiology and Biostatistics, The University of Auckland, Private Bag 92019, Auckland 1142, New Zealand
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 6 March 2015 / Revised: 12 May 2015 / Accepted: 20 May 2015 / Published: 27 May 2015
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Abstract

Decreasing population sodium intake has been identified as a “best buy” for reducing non-communicable disease. The aim of this study was to explore 10-year changes in the sodium content of New Zealand processed foods. Nutrient data for nine key food groups were collected in supermarkets in 2003 (n = 323) and 2013 (n = 885). Mean (SD) and median (min, max) sodium content were calculated by food group, year and label type (private/branded). Paired t-tests explored changes in sodium content for all products available for sale in both years (matched; n = 182). The mean (SD) sodium content of all foods was 436 (263) mg (100 g)−1 in 2003 and 433 (304) mg (100 g)−1 in 2013, with no significant difference in matched products over time (mean (SD) difference, −56 (122) mg (100 g)−1, 12%; p = 0.22). The largest percentage reductions in sodium (for matched products) were observed for Breakfast Cereals (28%; −123 (125) mg (100 g)−1), Canned Spaghetti (15%; −76 (111) mg (100 g)−1) and Bread (14%; −68 (69) mg (100 g)−1). The reduction in sodium was greater for matched private vs. branded foods (−69 vs. −50 mg (100 g)−1, both p < 0.001). There has been modest progress with sodium reduction in some New Zealand food categories over the past 10 years. A renewed focus across the whole food supply is needed if New Zealand is to meet its global commitment to reducing population sodium intake. View Full-Text
Keywords: sodium; salt; processed food; packaged food; food analysis; New Zealand sodium; salt; processed food; packaged food; food analysis; New Zealand
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Monro, D.; Mhurchu, C.N.; Jiang, Y.; Gorton, D.; Eyles, H. Changes in the Sodium Content of New Zealand Processed Foods: 2003–2013. Nutrients 2015, 7, 4054-4067.

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