A TV spot on salt reduction will be officially broadcast on the national and provincial television and radio channels as well as social media sites from August 19. — Photo courtesy the Ministry of Health

With the message: “Adding less salt to food, Dipping lightly in salty sauces and condiments, Limiting salty processed food”, it calls on people and the community to reduce salt consumption in their daily diet to prevent hypertension, strokes and other non-communicable diseases.

The campaign is jointly organised by the Ministry of Health’s Preventive Medicine Department in collaboration with the World Health Organisation Office in Vietnam and with technical support by the global public health organisation Vital Strategies.

Originating from the "Resolve to Save Lives" initiative, a campaign to reduce salt in diets in a number of developing countries, the TV spot is also the opening activity of a national communication programme on reducing salt consumption launched by the health sector in Vietnam during 2018-25.

The campaign aims to dramatically depict the dangers of the high-salt diet common in Vietnam and call on the community to reduce salt consumption.

“Excess salt kills more than 40,000 people in Vietnam every year,” said Dr. Laura Cobb, director of Nutrition Policy and Surveillance at Resolve to Save Lives, an initiative of Vital Strategies.

“Public education is an important step by the Vietnamese Government toward preventing non-communicable diseases such as heart attacks and stroke and saving lives.”

Besides the TV spot, the national and provincial television channels will also broadcast messages calling for salt reduction. In addition, all information about reducing salt in daily diets will also be regularly updated on the Facebook page "Salt reduction for health" - the official information page of the programme on "Communication on salt reduction in the diet to prevent hypertension, cardiovascular disease and other diseases” launched by the Ministry of Health and WHO.

The average salt intake in Vietnam is 9.4 grams per day, almost double the amount recommended by the World Health Organisation. High-salt diets are directly linked to high blood pressure, kidney failure and stroke. One out of every five adults in Vietnam has high blood pressure, and one in every three deaths is due to cardiovascular disease, mainly from stroke.

Data shows that the primary source of sodium in Vietnam is salt added during home cooking and from condiments including fish sauce, according to the health ministry.

Health experts said that this is a good time to raise people's awareness of how to reduce salt consumption in daily diets, especially in the context that Vietnam consecutively reported new deaths from COVID-19 on the basis of serious medical conditions such as hypertension, heart failure, kidney failure and stroke.  VNS

Vietnamese consume salt twice as much as WHO-recommended level

Vietnamese consume salt twice as much as WHO-recommended level

The amount of salt recommended by the WHO is below 1.5g for under one-year-old children and less than 0.3g of salt for infants.  

Younger Vietnamese are increasingly suffering from strokes

Younger Vietnamese are increasingly suffering from strokes

Experts have expressed concern as younger Vietnamese are increasingly suffering from strokes.