Legal regulation of sodium consumption to reduce chronic conditions

James Hodge, Leila F. Barraza

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


In the United States, tens of thousands of Americans die each year of heart disease, stroke, or other chronic conditions tied to hypertension from long-term overconsumption of sodium compounds. Major strides to lower dietary sodium have been made over decades, but the goal of reducing Americans' daily consumption is elusive. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has been urged to consider stronger regulatory limits on sodium, especially in processed and prepared foods. Still, FDA categorizes salt (and many other sodium compounds) as "generally recognized as safe," meaning they can be added to foods when ingested in reasonable amounts. Legal reforms or actions at each level of government offer traditional and new routes to improving chronic disease outcomes. However, using law as a public health tool must be assessed carefully, given potential trade-offs and unproven efficacy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number150545
JournalPreventing Chronic Disease
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 1 2016

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health Policy
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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