The USDA’s 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans urges the U.S. population to reduce sodium consumption. However, concerns over sodium and its relation to hypertension can be found in Latin America, as well.

For example, Mexico’s “2000 National Health Survey” found 30.7% of adults aged 20-69 years had hypertension. More recently, one paper, “Hypertension in Mexican Adults: Results from the National Health and Nutrition Survey 2006” (Salud Pública Méxvol.52  supl.1 Cuernavaca  2010), examined the prevalence of hypertension among Mexican adults and compared rates to those of Mexican-Americans living in the U.S. In all, 43.2% of those over age 20 had hypertension, but the prevalence was higher in Mexico than Mexican-Americans living in the U.S. The paper also noted in the previous six years in Mexico, an increase of 25% had been observed in the prevalence of Mexican adults with hypertension, in contrast to a 15% reduction that had occurred among Mexican-Americans.

Chile’s “National Health Survey 2009-2010,” published by the Ministerio de Salud, reported that nationally, 26.9% of those 15 years and older (28.7% of males and 25.3% of females) had hypertension.

Processors are gradually responding. Goya Foods recently launched a low-sodium variety of Sazón Goya seasoning for its Latino customers, with optional distribution into Dominican Republic, Mexico and certain other Latin American countries. 

At the Food Technology & Expo México 2010, Mexico City, Eduardo Galindo, director of R&D of Campbell’s de Mexico, noted many Campbell products sold in Central and South America that are supplied from the U. S. are low in sodium. For new products under development in Mexico, the company is committed to achieving 480mg of sodium per serving. pf

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