Scientists: replacement of table salt to prevent heart disease
Researchers at the George Institute for Global Health in Australia have showed the blood pressure lowering effects of salt substitutes could prevent around 460,000 cardiovascular disease (CVD) deaths annually, including 208,000 due to stroke and 175,000 due to heart disease.
Cardiovascular disease accounts for roughly 30% of deaths globally every year according to World Health Organisation (WHO) figures - a driving factor of which is hypertension (high blood pressure), caused by eating a diet high in salt.
Switching from regular household salt to potassium-enriched salt substitutes could save almost half a million lives in China every year, according to a study published in the British Medical Journal.
As well as lowering CVD related deaths the team's modeling also showed that salt substitutes could prevent around 743,000 non-fatal CVD events each year, including 365,000 strokes and 147,000 heart attacks, and decrease rates of chronic kidney disease (CKD) by around 120,000 each year, Xinhua reported.
The salt substitutes contain less sodium chloride than regular salt, with roughly 70% sodium and the other 30% potassium chloride.