Just add a pinch of salt! - Current directions for the use of salt in recipes in Australian magazines

Jacqui Webster, Elizabeth Dunford, Federica Barzi, Bruce Neal

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    3 Citations (Scopus)


    Background: Australians currently consume too much salt causing adverse consequences for health. The media play an important role in the provision of nutrition advice to consumers. Previous research shows that many foods advertized in consumer magazines are high in salt, but little research has examined magazine recipes in this context. The aim of this project was to summarize directions for salt use in recipes in leading Australian magazines. Methods: In August 2007 and 2008, the top 10 magazines by circulation that included at least five recipes, were examined. Standardized information was collected about directions for salt use in recipes. Results: Three hundred and thirty recipes were identified in 2007 and 417 in 2008. About 68 of recipes included high-salt ingredients, 37% instructed to season with salt, 10% instructed to add a specific quantity of salt and 15% recommended selection of low-salt ingredients. There was substantial variability in directions for salt use in recipes between magazines, but no clear differences between 2007 and 2008. Conclusion: Many recipes advised to add salt in direct contradiction to national dietary guidelines. There is clear potential for editorial guidelines on salt use in recipes to play a role in advancing public health efforts in Australia and other such nations.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)96-99
    Number of pages4
    JournalEuropean Journal of Public Health
    Issue number1
    Publication statusPublished - Feb 2010


    • Dietary
    • Nutrition policy
    • Printed media
    • Public health
    • Sodium


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