High dietary intake of sodium and potassium may speed the progression of kidney disease, according to a study appearing in an upcoming issue of the Journal of the American Society of Nephrology (JASN). The findings could impact dietary recommendations to help safeguard patients’ health. The article, entitled “Urinary Sodium and Potassium Excretion and Chronic Kidney Disease Progression,” appears online.

Diet plays an important role in CKD progression, but the researchers said little is known about the role of certain dietary components such as sodium and potassium.

Jiang He, MD, PhD, from Tulane University, and his colleagues collected yearly urine samples from 3,939 patients with CKD to estimate the patients’ dietary sodium and potassium intake. The researchers found that high urinary excretion levels of both sodium and potassium were linked with faster disease progression. In addition, the study’s participants consumed an average of 3,700 mg of sodium per day, which is much higher than the recommended 2,400 mg per day limit.

“These data warrant future clinical trials to test the effect of a moderate reduction in dietary sodium and potassium intake on CKD progression in patients with high dietary sodium or potassium intake,” said Dr. He. “The findings could ultimately impact dietary recommendations for patients with CKD to slow disease progression.”

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