Chinese Restaurants in Philadelphia Cut Back on Salt

Staff Writer
Philadelphia implements a new program to teach Chinese restaurants how to add flavor while cutting back on salt

Photo Sasabune Omakase Modified: Flickr/erin/CC 4.0

Too much salt can be a big health problem. Philadelphia is working to keep Americans healthy.

The recommended daily sodium intake is 2,300 milligrams. The average American consumes 3,400 milligrams. To help keep the community healthy, Philadelphia is working with 200 of the city’s Chinese takeout restaurants to advise them on how they can lower the salt content on their menus.

The program in Philadelphia is a local take on national program that started back in 2010. While many companies worked with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, the overall program failed to make significant progress in the reduction of salt found in popular foods.

Philadelphia, however, has made a considerable progress by providing free cooking classes that show chefs how to add flavor without adding salt.

Before starting the classes, the city analyzed the sodium two popular takeout dishes from 20 restaurants. A few months later analysts looked at the dishes again and found a 20 percent reduction in the salt content thanks to the classes.

Philadelphia also requires chain restaurants to post sodium levels in addition to calorie counts. Moreover, the city is working with schools to make sure all school lunches meet the states salt standards. The hope is to raise a generation that is less dependent on salt. 

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