Okay… I’ll be the first to admit my diet needs improving. I’m more likely to reach for a bag of chips than a bag of carrots and, if I’m hungry, I’ll probably drive to McDonald’s instead of the grocery store. Needless to say, it’s safe to assume I don’t consume a healthy amount of potassium.
According to this article by the Duluth News Tribune, too little (hypokalemia) or too much potassium (hyperkalemia) can negatively affect one’s health.
Apparently, for adults, the recommended amount of daily potassium is at least 4,700 mg. Even more, the ratio of potassium to sodium consumed should be two—or three—to one.
That’s not the case for many Americans, myself included.
Now, this doesn’t mean we’re all candidates for hypo/hyperkalemia. Often, these two conditions are symptoms of other conditions or diseases. If you’re healthy, the article states, it’s close to impossible to eat too much potassium since functioning kidneys eliminate the excess. It’s when the kidneys aren’t working correctly, or when you take certain medications, that the chances of hyperkalemia increase.
What are the symptoms?
With hypokalemia, you might notice elevated blood pressure, weak muscles, or an irregular heartbeat. With hyperkalemia, the irregular heartbeat can be dangerous—better not to overlook it.
Click here to read more about the importance of balanced potassium levels and also to find out which foods are the richest in potassium.
A proper and nutritious diet can make such a difference, not only in daily living but also in managing a disease. Specifically, potassium aids in digestion, builds muscles, and affects heartbeat and blood pressure, among other effects.