A large-scale experiment showed that when using salt with Potassium instead of regular salt, the risks of developing cardiovascular diseases are reduced, which can save millions of lives a year.
Increased intake of sodium salt in food, as well as low levels of potassium intake with food, are associated with high blood pressure and an increased risk of cardiovascular disease and premature death. However, salt is necessary for life - chlorine ions are needed for the production of hydrochloric acid, and sodium ions are involved in the transmission of nerve impulses and the contraction of muscle fibers.
A single product available today in many supermarkets can solve these two problems at the same time. We are talking about salt with a low sodium content, with potassium supplements. Such salt tastes identical to the usual, but contains little sodium and a lot of potassium.
To prove the benefits of salt with potassium undertook an international team of researchers in collaboration with Chinese experts from Peking University. The results are presented in an article published in the medical journal The New England Journal of Medicine.
A large-scale study conducted in China demonstrated that the use of salt with potassium is much more useful than ordinary salt.
In total, the study covered more than 200 thousand people. These were men and women who had suffered a stroke aged 60 years and older, with high blood pressure. Half of the participants were provided with salt with potassium and a quarter-low sodium content for free, and half ate as usual.
The study was conceived as a five-year experiment, but ended a little earlier due to the COVID-19 pandemic. However, there was already a noticeable difference between the groups.
In the group that consumed salt with potassium and low sodium, the risk of stroke decreased by 14%, the risk of major cardiovascular diseases by 13%, the risk of death from all causes by 12%.
"Almost all people in the world eat more salt than they should," says clinical epidemiologist Bruce Neal. "If low-sodium salt were used around the world, several million premature deaths could be prevented each year."