Salty soups can increase cancer risk, says expert

People who regularly have soup with a high salt content could be increasing their risk of stomach cancer, according to an expert.

Soups are one of the 'worst culprits' for hidden salt, she said, and a single serving of some leading brands contains half the recommended daily maximum intake. Dr Rachel Thompson, science programme manager for the World Cancer Research Fund (WCRF) recommended making low-salt versions at home. She also suggested reducing intake of salt-preserved foods, such as ham and sausages, as well as pizza, some ready meals and breakfast cereals.

Salt is known to increase blood pressure and the risk of stroke and heart disease, but scientists also believe it is a cause of stomach cancer. The recommended intake of salt for adults is no more than 6g a day although the current average consumption is 8.6g daily.

Dr Thompson said: 'Fresh vegetable-based soups tend to have less salt than tinned cream-based soups which include bacon or ham, but even some of the healthier brands of vegetable soups still contain over a third of our recommended daily intake. This should be no more than 6g but we actually need far less. It is commonly known that salt increases risk of high blood pressure, but people are less aware that it also probably increases risk of stomach cancer. Even taking small steps to reduce your salt intake, such as always checking labels or making your own soup from scratch, is something positive you can do to help reduce your risk of cancer.'

According to the WCRF, the salt levels in Batchelors Soupfulls, for example, vary from 1.9g to 3g per single serving, which is 32 per cent to 50 per cent of the recommended intake, while Heinz Classic Vegetable soup contains 2g of salt per serving (33 per cent).

Source - Daily Mail