Starting December 1, 2015, New York City restaurant chains with 15 or more locations are required to display a small salt shaker warning symbol (see right) if a menu item has more than the daily recommended limit of 2,300 milligrams — about 1 teaspoon — of salt.
According to the NYC Health Department, “The average American adult consumes almost 50 percent more sodium than the recommended limit per day.” Consuming too much sodium is linked to an increased risk of developing high blood pressure, heart disease and stroke.
Medical research has found that the majority of sodium in the American diet, about 77 percent, comes from restaurant and processed foods. Health warnings such as calorie count and now sodium warnings, can increase knowledge and decrease consumption of certain products. Additionally, a recent survey reports that approximately 80 percent of New Yorkers say calorie labels are useful and more than one million New Yorkers see them daily.
New York is the first city in the nation to coordinate a public-private partnership to help prevent heart disease by reducing the amount of salt in packaged and restaurant foods.
To learn more about this initiative, visit nyc.gov/salt.