Low Potassium || Affect on your health
In this article we will try to understand the causes of low potassium and how can it impact our body functioning.
Potassium is a mineral which is essential for our body function, the problem is that our body doesn’t produce it and it has to be taken from our diet.
Though many people have heard about potassium but majority of them are unaware of its importance.
That’s why statistics points out that around 98% American population don’t get the daily recommended diet. when i read the statistics, i decided to do research in this subject and come up with this article which will explain about this mineral in easy and simplified manner.
What is Potassium?
Potassium is a mineral which is required for essential body function.
It basically acts as an electrolyte of the body so that the nerve signals from brain can get transferred to different body parts.
You need to understand that our body is like an electrical machine.
The brain sends the signal through nerves to the different part of the body.
And to transfer that signal, the body needs an effective electrical environment, which is provided by potassium in the body.
Hence, potassium is necessary for virtually every body function.
Some of the other noticeable functions are:
a. Potassium is needed for contraction of muscle
b. Regulation of heartbeat and blood pressure maintenance
The deficiency of potassium can severely impact the body function. I have written about this topic in later part of the article for your detailed understanding.
Ideal Potassium level and its regulation
The ideal level of potassium is around 3.5-5 mEq/L.
And the level below 3 units is considered as a case of potassium deficiency.
Kidney plays an important role in potassium regulation.
Potassium is a kind of mineral which is not stored enough by the body, it all gets washed through urine. That’s why it is extremely important to take some food which is rich in potassium.
Missing your daily potassium dose, can make you potassium deficient and cause your body to suffer accordingly.
Cause of Potassium Deficiency
There are many reasons for potassium deficiency, some of it are within your control and some are not.
The most important cause of potassium deficient and can be easily prevented is the improper diet which lacks in potassium.
People throughout the world are adopting modern diet which is unhealthy for your body. The foods that are widely available in the market are full of salt, sugar and harmful chemicals which is making our body prone to disease.
These foods lack in essential nutrients and are full of disease-causing elements.
For example, the packet food you eat is full of sodium, which is responsible for rise in blood pressure among the people.
It is very important for us to move towards foods which are naturals and are full of essential nutrients.
These are some foods that can help you fulfill your daily potassium dose:
7. Milk etc.
Apart from the improper diet, there are other conditions which cause potassium deficiency and hence should be kept in mind:
A. Intestine Problems
B. Kidney Problems
-> Kidney Failure
C. Medicine Effect
Some medicine (which you are already taking can affect the potassium levels)
->Medicine used for Asthma
-> Some antibiotics (eg. Aminoglycosides)
Symptoms of Potassium Deficiency
Potassium deficiency can impact the body functioning, some of the symptoms of low potassium in the body are:
Potassium is responsible for effective transmission of brain signals throughout the body.
Low potassium weakens the signals and make it difficult for your body to perform functions effectively.
As a result, you start feeling tired and can’t concentrate on your daily activity.
You need to understand that this can severely impact your working efficiency.
If you wish to get promotion in your job or do your business effectively, it is very important to remain fresh and energetic.
Low potassium, just weakens your body and reduce your chance of getting successful.
2. Muscle Cramps
The potassium in your body sends signals from your brain to your muscle to contract and perform a specific function.
Less amount of potassium results in weak signals and improper movement of muscles, this results in cramps and bloating ion different parts of the body.
3. Tingling and Numbness
For the same reason above, your legs and hands may face numbness, which is very irritating especially during the working hours.
Low potassium results in improper nerve signaling to the stomach, which reduces food metabolism and ultimately constipation.
5. High Blood Pressure
It is very important to maintain a balance between sodium and potassium intake.
If you eating too much of a sodium (by eating chips or any packaged foods), the sodium-potassium balance gets disturbed and the blood pressure rise.
Potassium is a very important mineral for the patient suffering from heart patients.
Even the doctors ask these patients to take potassium supplements so that their blood pressure can be reduced.
6. Improper Heart Beat
Potassium plays key role in heart functioning.
Lack of sufficient potassium results in improper heartbeat which can be extremely dangerous for the body.
7. Mood Swings
disrupting nerve signals impacts your mood.
You are more likely to get depressed if your potassium level is not optimal.
Diagnosis of Potassium Deficiency
There are tests which are performed to check the levels of potassium in the body.
However, if you are suffering from kidney problems, there is good chance that your potassium level is out of optimal level.
Some of the test performed are:
1. Basic Blood Test
2. ECG: To check irregular heart beating
If you think that you are suffering from low potassium, then avoid doing strenuous activity because the limited potassium left in the body will get out through our body sweat.
I hope you like the article.
If you do, please share it with your friends and family for their nutritional understanding