Health

Widow Awarded Army Pension After Arguing Wartime Salt Eating Habit Killed Husband

| by Jonathan Wolfe

A widow successfully argued that she deserves an army pension because her husband died of an excessive salt intake habit that started during World War II.

The widow, Shirley Hutton, was formerly married to Australian Army veteran Clem Hutton. Clem served during World War II. Due to the heat of the climates in which Hutton fought, he and other soldiers were told to maintain a high salt intake during their deployment. As a result, Hutton developed an affinity for salt-saturated foods that never went away.

His salt-eating ways prevailed well into his old age. Shirley Hutton claims her husband’s favorite snack was “a Sao biscuit with slices of cheese and tomato caked in salt.”

Australia’s Administrative Appeals Tribunal added that "He even added salt to apples, porridge and rice. Mr. Hutton 's daughters both said he would often argue that consuming salt was essential to avoid dehydration if one did heavy work in a hot climate.''

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In 1997, Hutton was diagnosed with hypertension. Doctors told him his high blood pressure was directly related to his chronic high salt intake. In July of 2012, he died from a heart attack. His heart attack was caused by his hypertension.

You can see the chain of events here: war causes high salt intake, which causes hypertension, which causes a heart attack, which causes death. Are you convinced? The court was.

After deliberating on the merits of Shirley Hutton’s argument, the judges ruled that Clem Hutton’s death via salt was directly caused by war. Accordingly, she is now entitled to receive an Army pension for her loss

Sources: Northern Star, Sun Shine Coast Daily