New research has found that bread can account for a fifth of our daily intake of salt, with some loaves loaded with more salt per slice than a packet of crisps.
Consensus Action on Salt and Health surveyed the salt content of 294 fresh and packaged loaves, with the worst offender containing more than 2g of salt per 100g.
The findings also show that high street chain bakeries generally sell the saltiest bread and some loaves don’t have crucial nutritional labelling.
Eating too much salt is linked to high blood pressure, which in turn increases your risk of developing heart disease. Adults should eat less than 6g of salt a day – that’s about one teaspoon of salt or around 2.5g of sodium.
Victoria Taylor, Senior Dietitian at the British Heart Foundation, said: “Contrary to popular belief, salty food doesn’t necessarily have to be junk food. A lot of bread is clearly packed with sodium and because it’s such a staple part of our diet, bread can end up significantly bumping up the amount of salt we eat each day.
“Worryingly, some loaves are missing important labels showing nutritional information, making it incredibly difficult for shoppers to make healthy choices.
“We know too many people are eating too much salt each day which can have an effect on their blood pressure, a major risk factor for heart disease. Some manufacturers are working towards targets for salt reduction, but we need more action to cut the salt content in bread and make sure they provide colour-coded food labels to help their customers.”