Salt and Cancer Risk – Position Statement

Key Messages

Salt is a compound of the elements sodium and chlorine, and is commonly used to flavour and preserve foods. Most of the salt we eat comes from processed and packaged foods such as sauces, processed meats, stock cubes and soups as well as breads and cereals.

Evidence suggests that there is a probable causal relationship between both salt and salt preserved foods and stomach cancer risk. Salt is also a leading cause of high blood pressure and cardiovascular disease.

Cancer Council Australia supports the recommendation made by the National Health and Medical Research Council’s (NHMRC) Australian Dietary Guidelines that people choose diets that limit salt intake through avoiding adding salt in cooking or at the table, and through choosing fresh unprocessed foods over processed foods.

Cancer Council Australia supports efforts to reduce population salt intakes, particularly through reducing salt levels in processed and takeaway foods.

For general health and wellbeing, people should aim to consume no more than 2300 mg of sodium (6 g of salt) per day.

Ways to limit salt intake include purchasing “no added salt” or “low salt” foods in the supermarket, flavouring foods with herbs and spices instead of salt, eating more fresh fruit and vegetables and limiting processed and take-away foods.

See the full position statement:
Salt and Cancer Risk Position Statement