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The supermarket ready meals that have more salt than a whole tube of Pringles

Revealed: The supermarket ready meals that have more salt than a whole tube of Pringles (and Tesco is the worst offender)

  • Sainsbury’s Taste the Difference Sausage and Mash has 2.9g of salt in a serving
  • This is more than a 200g tube of Original Pringles, which contains 2.6g of salt
  • Many supermarket ready meals have half adult’s recommended intake for a day

Some of the UK’s most popular ready meals contain more salt than a tube of Pringles, new research has revealed.   

Sainsbury’s Taste the Difference Sausage and Mash is the worst offender of shop- bought microwave dishes, containing almost 3g of salt, which is half an adult’s daily intake.

A 200g tube of Original flavour Pringles contains 2.6g of salt, which is less than the four worst offenders sold in Tesco and Sainsbury’s.

Analysing the top ten most popular ready meals in the UK, research group JBH looked at the nutritional differences between the premium and basic ready meals available in Asda, Tesco, Morrisons and Sainsburys to find the saltiest supermarket ready meals, overall.  

On average, there was eight per cent less salt in the basic branded ready meals, when compared with the premium dishes.

THE TEN SALTIEST SUPERMARKET READY MEALS….
Supermarket Dish Salt (g) % of daily allowance 
Sainsburys Taste the Difference Sausage and Mash 2.93 48.9 
Tesco Finest Fish Pie 2.9 48.3 
Tesco Basics Sausage and Mash 2.9 48.3 
Tesco Basics Carbonara 2.8 46.7 
Tesco Finest Chicken Korma 2.5 41.7
Tesco Finest Sausage and Mash 2.5 41.7
Sainsburys Taste the Difference Hot Pot (lamb) 2.49 41.5 
Morrisons The Best Sausage and Mash 2.46 41 
Morrisons The Best Shepherds Pie 2.44 40.7 
Tesco Basics Hot Pot (lamb) 2.4 40 
…THE LEAST SALTY READY MEALS 
Supermarket Dish Salt (g) % of daily allowance
Morrisons Basics Paella 0.31 5.2
Tesco Basics Spaghetti Bolognese 0.9 15
Tesco Finest Spaghetti Bolognese 1.2 20
Sainsburys Taste the Difference Chicken Korma 1.3 21.7
Sainsburys Taste the Difference Spaghetti Bolognese 1.35 22.5
Sainsburys Basics Lasagne 1.35 22.5
Morrisons The Best Spaghetti Bolognese 1.37 22.8
Sainsburys Basics Paella 1.37 22.8
Asda Basics Fish Pie 1.4 23.3
Morrisons The Best Chicken Korma 1.41 23.5

The NHS recommends adults and children over 11 should eat no more than 6g of salt in one day – but many microwave meals have almost half of that in a single serving. 

The UK’s ten most popular ready meals

  1. Shepherds Pie 
  2. Sausage and Mash 
  3. Spaghetti Bolognese 
  4. Fish Pie 
  5. Paella 
  6. Macaroni Cheese 
  7. Lasagne 
  8. Hot Pot (lamb) 
  9. Chicken Korma 
  10.  Carbonara

Tesco dominated the top 10 saltiest dishes, with their Finest Fish Pie taking second place, while its Basics Sausage and Mash, Basic Carbonara and Finest Chicken Korma came in third, fourth and fifth respectively.

Among the 10 least-salty dishes, many still had almost a quarter of the daily salt allowance including Morrisons Chicken Korma and Asda’s basic fish pie, which both have 1.4g of salt. 

Eating too much salt can put strain on the blood vessels and heart, raising the risk of high blood pressure, heart attack, heart failure and stroke. 

Adults are advised to eat no more than 6g of salt a day, which is around one teaspoon.  

Sainsbury's Taste the Difference Sausage and Mash is the worst offender of shop bought microwave dishes, containing almost 3g of salt, which is half an adults daily intake.

Tesco dominated the top 10 saltiest dishes, with their Finest Fish Pie taking second place

Sainsbury’s Taste the Difference Sausage and Mash is the worst offender of shop bought microwave dishes, containing almost 3g of salt, which is half an adults daily intake. Tesco dominated the top 10 saltiest dishes, with their Finest Fish Pie taking second place

The NHS recommends adults and children over 11 should eat no more than 6g of salt in day - but many microwave meals have almost half that in a single serving including Tesco's Bangers and Mash, which contains 2.9g of salt

Tesco finest sausage a mash has 2.5g of salt in. While a portion of Pringles has 0.40g

The NHS recommends adults and children over 11 should eat no more than 6g of salt in day – but many microwave meals have almost half that in a single serving including Tesco’s Bangers and Mash (left), which contains 2.9g of salt while Tesco Finest Cumbeland sausages and mash (right) had 2.5g of salt in

A 200g tube of Original flavour Pringles contains 2.6g of salt, which is less than the four worst offenders sold in Tesco and Sainsbury's

A 200g tube of Original flavour Pringles contains 2.6g of salt, which is less than the four worst offenders sold in Tesco and Sainsbury’s

Tesco's Spaghetti Carbonara contained 46.7% of an adult's daily salt intake

Tesco's Chicken Korma has 41.7% of an adult's salt intake

Tesco dominated the top 10 saltiest dishes, with their Finest Fish Pie taking second place, while their Basics Sausage and Mash, Basic Carbonara (left) and Finest Chicken Korma (right) came in third, fourth and fifth respectively.

WHAT ARE THE DANGERS OF TOO MUCH SALT? 

As many as 400,000 heart disease deaths were linked to high sodium diets in 2015. 

Most agencies recommend eating three quarters of a teaspoon of salt each day, but many adults eat more than that. 

An individual-sized bag of chips accounts for about seven to 12 percent of daily sodium intake, so a high salt diet would be the equivalent of eating more than eight bags each day.  

The balance of fluids and sodium in the body is crucial to homeostasis, which keeps systems operating in sync. 

When there is too much sodium in our systems, our bodies retain excess fluid to try to balance out the salt. 

The fluid makes the heart have to work harder to pump blood, leading to higher blood pressure. 

High blood pressure, in turn, raises risks for stroke and heart disease.  

Higher blood pressure also makes it more difficult for the heart to push oxygen-carrying blood to various organs, including the brain, which lead to cognitive declines.

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