This alternative to table salt could save many lives every year

Who I am
Carlos Laforet Coll
Author and references

Don't store avocado like this: it's dangerous

In the kitchen it's key to adding flavor to any dish, but using salt in recipes has a disturbing dark side to our health - according to this study.

Too much salt is bad for you. Or rather, too much sodium is bad for our health - and sodium, along with chlorine, is one of the two building blocks of table salt. There are already numerous studies that have linked excessive salt intake with the onset of certain diseases, such as hypertension and other cardiovascular diseases.

For this there is already on the market a 'substitute' salt, sodium free but at the same time added with potassium (potassium deficiency also has negative effects on blood pressure and on the health of our heart): it looks like salt, but it is much less bad for our health. So far, however, there have been no specific studies on the impact of this replacement salt in the incidence of stroke, heart attack and death as a result of heart disease - so the question of whether this alternative product actually works remains open.

(Read also: 10 alternatives to refined salt)

Now a new study conducted in China has clearly highlighted the positive effects of the substitute salt, inviting everyone to introduce it into our diet: since almost everyone in the world exceeds in salt consumption, replacing it with a sodium-free alternative could save the life of millions of people.

The study involved more than 20.000 residents of 600 Chinese villages - all with a history of heart disease; the average age of the people was 65. Half of the participants were provided with the replacement salt, with less sodium and more potassium than the regular salt. The other half, on the other hand, continued to use normal table salt for food preparation. At the end of the study, a contrast clearly emerged in the health conditions of the members of the two groups.

About five years into the experiment (the duration of which was shortened due to the Covid-19 pandemic), more than 4.000 participants died (more than three-quarters of them from a stroke) and more than 5.000 have undergone a major cardiovascular event. The replacement salt group experienced far fewer strokes and other heart conditions.

On the basis of the results collected, a model for the diffusion of heart diseases on the entire Chinese population was developed: if at national level we switched to the consumption of substitute salt, up to 460.000 people could be saved per year thanks to the prevention of heart diseases. . By extension, the entire world population could benefit from switching to healthier alternatives to common table salt.

A barrier to this change could be represented by the different ways in which food is prepared in various areas of the world: in fact, while in the rural villages of China, processed food is a rarity and people add salt during home preparations, in large cities (especially Western ones) processed food consumed every day naturally adds a lot of sodium to our diets - without us noticing. This is why salt should be replaced not only in the kitchen of our home, but also in the industrial ones that deal with the production of packaged foods.

Follow us on Telegram | Instagram | Facebook | TikTok | Youtube

Fonte: The New England Journal of Medicine

We also recommend:

  • Cooking salt: our daily dose of microplastics
  • The worst eating habits that weaken the immune system according to science
  • Unsuspected "healthy" foods that contain more sugar than a glazed donut
add a comment of This alternative to table salt could save many lives every year
Comment sent successfully! We will review it in the next few hours.