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Hospital bread to contain less salt

HOSPITAL in-patients will have less salt in their bread and less food on their plates under two new initiatives being introduced by the HSE.

The health authority has negotiated directly with bread manufacturers for supplies of bread with reduced salt.

The move follows recommendations in a HSE-commissioned report which pointed to the link between too much salt in the diet and high blood pressure.

A 40pc cut in salt intake, it said, would cut deaths from stroke by 494 a year, and from heart disease by 846 a year.

Irish adults eat about 10g of salt a day, more than twice the amount needed.

PILOT

In a separate initiative, food waste in acute hospitals will be limited by a new system for patients ordering meals with "correct portion sizes to patients and the correct quantity of prepared food to wards".

A pilot project in acute hospitals in the Dublin and North East HSE areas showed an average of 0.74kg of food was wasted for each in-patient a day.

The HSE says that while food waste in acute hospitals cannot be prevented completely, food distribution can be made more efficient.

It reckons that only about 30pc of food waste generated by hospitals is unavoidable.

csheehy@herald.ie


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