How to Diet: Does Potassium Protect Against Strokes?

For years, researchers have known that getting enough potassium may lower your blood pressure. A new study suggests that potassium may prevent a stroke in people who don’t have high blood pressure.

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Researchers tracked more than 90,000 women who were 50 to 79 when they entered the Women’s Health Initiative.

After 11 years, those who typically ate at least 3,200 milligrams of potassium a day from food had a 12 percent lower risk of having a stroke than those who ate less than about 1,900 mg a day.

What’s more, eating more potassium was linked to a 21 percent lower risk of stroke in women who didn’t have high blood pressure.

What to do: Eat more potassium-rich foods like vegetables, fruit, seafood, beans, yogurt, and milk. This type of study can’t tell whether something else about women who eat more potassium might explain their lower risk of stroke. However, it’s clear from randomized clinical trials that potassium lowers blood pressure.

Source: Stroke 45: 2874, 2014.

 

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