Public Health Initiative of the Day: No Salt For You

Mexico City's "Menos sal, más salud" encourages restaurant owners to make salt shakers available only for those who request them.

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New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg's latest health initiative -- the much-maligned soda ban -- may have been defeated in New York, but his influence is being felt in Mexico City.

The Mexican capital has undertaken a "Less Salt, More Health" campaign -- "Menos sal, más salud" -- which encourages restaurant owners to make salt shakers available only for those patrons who request them. The law has the support the local restaurant association, and though participation is voluntary, officials are optimistic it will put a dent in salt consumption.

According to El Nuevo Herald, Mexicans consume 11 grams of salt per day, almost three times the World Health Organization's recommended intake of salt and quite a bit more than their neighbors in the United States. About a third of the population of Mexico suffers from hypertension.

Armando Ahued, secretary of health in Mexico City, hopes that residents will begin to think twice before salting their food.

Top image: Nenov Brothers Images /Shutterstock

About the Author

  • Henry Grabar is a freelance writer and a former fellow at CityLab. He lives in New York.