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Salt: Necessity or Danger?

Salt, apart from the flavor it adds to food, is inextricably linked to the culture, traditions and religion of societies. Expressions that we use in our daily lives such as “water and salt”, “we ate bread and salt” or “rub salt in the wound” are just some of the examples that show the presence of salt in various aspects of our life. The precious value of salt was recognized many centuries ago when was used as reward for the Roman army. In fact, the etymology of the English word “salary”, is the Latin word “salarium”, which is translated as “payment with salt” or “money to buy salt”. Over the years it has been used as a means of preserving food, when modern methods such as refrigeration and freezing were not available. Today, we have sufficient scientific data to confirm that the presence of sodium is necessary for plenty of main human body functions.

However, increased salt consumption has been associated in recent decades with the onset of pathological conditions such as hypertension, cardiovascular disease, stomach cancer, osteoporosis and kidney disease. In the context of public health prevention, the latest guidelines from the World Health Organization recommend the intake of 5g of salt per day, which is equivalent to just 1 teaspoon. Nevertheless, every day we consume more, even twice as much as recommended amount, which comes from:

  • 75% of processed foods and meals outside the home
  • 10% of foods that naturally containing sodium
  • 10-15% from the addition of table salt

For this reason, EFET (Hellenic Food Authority) has in recent years carried out actions to raise consumer awareness on salt restriction (lectures, TV commercials). It has also established a collaboration with the Greek Chefs’ Club to create a guide for replacing salt with herbs in Greek cuisine, as well as with the Hellenic Bakers’ Federation in order to reduce the salt content in bread to 1.2%.

Considering the frequency with which modern people eat out (restaurants, fast food, hotels) it is understandable that achieving this recommended daily salt intake is quite difficult.

For this reason, Provil has designed the Healthy Line series, which consists of products that are low in salt, while at the same time they are enhanced with herbs, spices and natural ingredients that give them a strong aroma and rich taste that lasts. In addition, these products are free from preservatives, colorings or artificial flavor enhancers such as sodium glutamate.

Therefore, using the Healthy Line series professionals in gastronomy and Chefs can create delicious dishes with nutritional benefits for their customers.

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