There are many things the food police can’t be given credit for, but perhaps their most glaring deficiency is in consistency. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recently released a report naming breads as the leading source of salt — a.k.a. a “silent killer” and “the deadly white powder you already snort,” if you’re food police chief Michael Jacobson’s Center for “Science” in the Public Interest (CSPI) — in Americans’ diets.
Yes, you read that right. Bread, once part of the base of the food pyramid, is now on CDC head Thomas Frieden’s naughty list. What’s next for mankind’s “too-salty” staple? Will it be hyperbolic advertisements showing salt bursting from the space between slices? Frieden is the former Commissioner of the New York City Department of Health, so everything is on the table. Except the shaker, of course.
The food police also can’t be given credit for the rigor of their facts. Multiple studies have found that an activist-directed salt restriction diet is far from a panacea. One recent study found that low-salt diets could be correlated with certain cardiovascular disease while another found that they were associated with higher blood triglycerides. And a wide-ranging review found that a 50 percent reduction in salt intake was not associated with a significant decrease in cardiovascular mortality risk.
When even New York City Mayor (and King of Salt Scolds) Michael Bloomberg reportedly salts his morning bagel and his pizza, perhaps it’s time the CDC and the rest of the federal government left the rest of us alone.