New York’s Mayor Mommy is at it again. First it was smoking, then it was triglycerides, big sodas and baby formula. Let’s face it: The guy who believes in abortion because government has no right to make decisions about a woman’s body is sure making lots of decisions about the bodies of both genders.
Yesterday, the emperor of all we eat and warrior against the Second Amendment renewed his fight against one of the world’s great evils, SALT. He announced that his effort to strong-arm food marketers and retailers into reducing the amount of sodium they use by 25% by 2014 is on track.
Representatives from 7 of the 21 companies that “met one or more of their voluntary commitments to reduce sodium content in pre-packaged or restaurant foods” advanced by the National Salt Reduction Initiative stood behind the mayor at the City Hall press conference.
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Among the success stories, according to the Wall Street Journal:
Kraft Foods reduced sodium in the company’s Singles cheese slices by 18% per serving.
Subway reduced sodium in two of its most popular sandwiches, the Subway Club and the Italian B.M.T. [a personal favorite of the mayor’s, we learn], by more than 27%.
Unilever cut sodium in its ‘Ragu Old World Style Traditional’ tomato sauce by 20% per serving.
According to Bloomberg’s Press release:
‘Prior to our National Salt Reduction Initiative, there was no comprehensive approach to lowering sodium in foods, and many questioned whether companies would step up to meet a voluntary pledge,’ said Mayor Bloomberg. ‘These companies have demonstrated their commitment to removing excess sodium from their products and to working with public health authorities toward a shared goal –- helping their customers lead longer, healthier lives.”
According to Morton Satin, Ph.D., science and research director at the Salt Institute:
The main way to do that is to add potassium chloride instead of sodium chloride, said Russ Moroz, vice president for research at Kraft Foods. But because potassium tends to have a bitter, mineral taste, other ingredients have to be added. He said these were proprietary secrets, and he declined to name them.
Potassium is good, New York City Health Commissioner Thomas Farley said, because it lowers blood pressure and most people do not get enough of it. It is removed from fruits and vegetable during processing, he said. Mr. Bloomberg said he thought fears of additives were overdone.
But Satin said Monday that too much potassium could be bad for the kidneys, and that the “cocktail of chemical constituents” added to balance the bitterness and enhance the salty taste could present unknown risks, as those ingredients were undisclosed. “They do it with one eye on the lab and the other eye on the label,” he said. “They make sure it’s below the level that the F.D.A. requires for it to be on the label.”
Satin added that the link between high blood pressure and salt was just “a theory,” and that reducing salt too much could have harmful effects, like iodine deficiency in children, a cause of mental retardation, and diabetes.
It really doesn’t matter whether salt is good for you or bad. It is none of Nanny Bloomberg’s or anyone else in government’s business what people eat. Unhealthy living doesn’t help the city’s bottom line, as these people will die earlier thus needing fewer government services. So the only reason Mama Mike is spending city tax dollars on his health initiatives is he believes in the progressive state where government makes all the decisions. It is the antithesis of what this nation is all about — limited government involvement in our lives.
Perhaps the Mayor should spend a bit more time on the city’s failing finances and a lot less time on what New Yorkers put into their bodies.
Jeff Dunetz is editor/publisher of the political website, The Lid.