..Sodium intake decreased from 6.3 g/d in 1991 to 4.1 g/d in 2015, still twice the tolerable upper intake recommended by the WHO. Potassium intake was 1.7 g/d in 1991 and 1.5 g/d in 2015, below half that recommended by the WHO. The Na/K ratio decreased from 4.1 (ratios in g) in 1991 to 3.1 in 2015, 5 times the recommendation of the WHO. More than two-thirds (67%) of sodium intake was from salt added during food preparation, with 8.8% from processed foods in 2015, up from 5.0% in 1991. The most at-risk populations lived in China’s central region and rural areas, were middle aged, had lower educations, or were farmers.
Sodium intake is very high across all regions in China. As part of sodium reduction efforts, China should target people living in the central region and adults aged above 60 whose sodium intakes are much higher. Strategies to decrease sodium intake and increase potassium intake should be different from those applied in the Western world where the major source is processed food. Reduced sodium higher potassium salts should become a major policy initiative in China.