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Salt and trans-fats 'killing 40,000 Britons a year'

junk food

High level of salts and fat in the diets of British adults account for as many as 40,000 'needless' deaths each year, it has been claimed.

Once again calling for more to be done to encourage healthier lifestyles across the UK, the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (Nice) has warned that fast food and ready meals are responsible for thousands of deaths each year.

The government's health watchdog has argued that high levels of salt and trans-fats in such foods are a leading cause of heart disease.

Clamping down on producers and forcing them to make their food healthier would not only prevent thousands of deaths each year, but would also save the UK economy millions of pounds.

Launching the new Nice Development Group report, chairman and Oxford University professor Klim McPherson said: "Put simply, this guidance can help the Government and the food industry to take action to prevent huge numbers of unnecessary deaths and illnesses caused by heart disease and stroke."

While the current government guideline for salt consumption stands at six grams a day, Consensus Action on Salt and Health (Cash) advises that health adults can survive on just half this amount.

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Private treatment news : 23 June 2010