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High potassium, low salt can keep stroke risk down

 
 
 
 
 
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British researchers have demonstrated that those people who consume higher potassium in their diets and cut down salt are in lower risk of stroke.

The study indicates that a lower salt intake and potassium rich diet can combat high blood pressure and consequently the risk of stroke, according to the paper published in the British Medical Journal.

Two separate studies showed that increased level of potassium intake and modest reduction in salt consumption reduced blood pressure in adults.

Increasing potassium in the diet to 3-4g a day can reduce blood pressure in adults while it is linked to a 24% lower risk of stroke in them, the recent study says.

A modest reduction in salt intake for four or more weeks caused significant falls in blood pressure in people (men and women) with both raised and normal blood pressure, according to the study led by researchers at the Wolfson Institute of Preventive Medicine, Queen Mary, University of London.

“Modest reduction in salt intake was equivalent to halving the amount of salt we consume each day,” said the study leader Graham MacGregor, professor of cardiovascular medicine at Queen Mary.

While the average potassium intake in many countries is below 70-80mmol per day, it is recommended that adults should consume around 4g of potassium a day (or at least 90-100mmol).

Potassium is found in most types of food, such as bananas, vegetables, pulses, nuts and seeds, milk, fish, chicken and bread.

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