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Utilizing Salt Substitutes could Potentially Decrease the Likelihood of Developing High Blood Pressure by 40%

Blood Pressure

A recent study discovered that substituting regular table salt with a potassium-enriched salt substitute reduced the incidence of high blood pressure in older adults without causing episodes of low blood pressure. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, nearly half of adults in the United States have high blood pressure, which increases the risk of heart disease and stroke. Decreasing sodium intake in the diet is one of the most effective methods for lowering the risk of high blood pressure. However, this can be challenging due to the impact of sodium on food taste and the high sodium content in numerous packaged and restaurant/fast food meals.

“In our findings, we unveil a promising advancement in blood pressure management that provides individuals with an opportunity to protect their health and mitigate the risks of cardiovascular issues, all while retaining the ability to savor the delightful flavors of their preferred meals,” stated Dr. Yangfeng Wu, executive director of Peking University Clinical Research Institute in Beijing, China, in a news release.

Salt substitutes usage associated with a 40% decrease in the risk of high blood pressure

The research involved 611 individuals aged 55 or older residing in 48 long-term care facilities in China. Participants had an average age of 71 years, with three-quarters being men. To be eligible, participants could not have blood pressure readings exceeding 140mmHg/90mmHg and could not be using high blood pressure medications at the beginning of the study.

Researchers divided half of the facilities into two groups: one group replaced regular salt with a salt substitute, while the other group continued using regular salt.

Conventional table salt primarily consists of sodium chloride, with possible additions of iodine for thyroid health and trace minerals in the case of sea salt. The salt substitute employed in the study contained approximately one-third less sodium chloride than typical table salt.

Moreover, the salt substitute contained 25% potassium chloride, which does not elevate blood pressure, and 12% dried food flavorings, including mushroom, lemon, seaweed, hawthorn, and wild jujube, along with traces of amino acids.

“Salt substitutes offer a valuable solution for adhering to dietary restrictions and enhancing health outcomes by replicating the taste of sodium without its detrimental effects,” commented Dr. Maria Carolina Delgado-Lelievre, an assistant professor of medicine at the University of Miami’s Miller School of Medicine at UHealth, The University of Miami Health System, who was not involved in the recent study.

According to researchers, individuals using the salt substitute were 40% less likely to develop high blood pressure compared to those using regular salt after two years.

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