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Reduction in blood pressure with a low sodium, high potassium, high magnesium salt in older subjects with mild to moderate hypertension

BMJ 1994; 309 doi: (Published 13 August 1994) Cite this as: BMJ 1994;309:436
  1. J M Geleijnse,
  2. J C M Witteman,
  3. A A A Bak,
  4. J H den Breijen,
  5. D E Grobbee
  1. Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, Erasmus University Medical School, Rotterdam, Netherlands
  1. Correspondence to: Mrs J M Geleijnse,.
  • Accepted 8 June 1994


Objective : To examine the effect of a reduced sodium and increased potassium and magnesium intake on blood pressure.

Design : Randomised double blind placebo controlled trial.

Setting : General population of a suburb of Rotterdam.

Subjects : 100 men and women between 55 and 75 years of age with untreated mild to moderate hypertension.

Interventions : During 24 weeks the intervention group received a mineral salt (sodium: potassium: magnesium 8:6:1) and foods prepared with the mineral salt. Controls received common salt and foods.

Main outcome measure : Change in blood pressure. Results - Complete follow up was achieved for 97 of the 100 randomised subjects. Systolic blood pressure (mean of measurements at weeks 8, 16, and 24) fell by 7.6 mm Hg (95% confidence interval 4.0 to 11.2) and diastolic blood pressure by 3.3 mm Hg (0.8 to 5.8) in the mineral salt group compared with the controls, with a 28% decrease in urinary sodium excretion and a 22% increase in urinary potassium excretion. Twenty five weeks after the study the difference in blood pressure between the groups was no longer detectable.

Conclusion : Replacing common sodium salt by a low sodium, high potassium, high magnesium mineral salt could offer a valuable non -pharmacological approach to lowering blood pressure in older people with mild to moderate hypertension.


    • Accepted 8 June 1994
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