July 13, 2022
HONG KONG – The Food and Environmental Hygiene Department (FEHD) has found that certain types of dim sum in the city have relatively high sodium content despite a falling trend, while there was a wide variation in sodium content among samples of the same types of certain dim sum.
Among different types of dim sum, shrimp siu mai was found to have the highest average sodium content of 590 mg/100 g, followed by spring roll with shrimp (480 mg/100 g) and steamed minced beef ball (440 mg/100 g)
A study by the Centre for Food Safety (CFS) of the FEHD indicated that non-prepackaged dim sum has sodium content ranging from 3 mg to 680 mg per 100 g, with the average number being 330 mg/100 g.
A person’s WHO-recommended daily sodium intake is 2,000 mg per day.
Among different types of dim sum, shrimp siu mai was found to have the highest average sodium content of 590 mg/100 g, followed by spring roll with shrimp (480 mg/100 g) and steamed minced beef ball (440 mg/100 g).
The study found that dim sum types with the least sodium content were steamed rice rolls, ranging from 66 mg to 180 mg/100g.
The CFS collected 120 non-prepackaged food samples covering 12 types of dim sum and four types of sauce from various Chinese restaurants and dim sum stores for the study.
Sodium is essential for body functions, but excessive sodium intake may increase the risk of developing high blood pressure. Untreated high blood pressure can lead to heart attack, stroke, kidney failure and more, said a government spokesperson.
Urging people to maintain a balanced diet with variety, the spokesperson advised them to pay attention to the sodium content in dim sum and choose carefully.
“Request the dim sum to be served separately from sauces, and taste before deciding to dip in sauces. Dip lightly in the sauces, if needed,” said the spokesperson, asking people to choose those with lower sodium content.
The spokesperson also urged the traders to avoid combinations of dim sum items with higher sodium content while setting a set menu, and offer more often those with lower sodium content.