Potassium deficiency - Symptoms, Signs and Causes of potassium deficiency

Although severe potassium deficiency is rare, moderate deficiency is quite common and is associated with increased blood pressure, salt sensitivity, and risk of muscle weakness, kidney stones, and bone loss. Observational data suggest that it may also increase the risk of cardiovascular disease, particularly stroke. IOM panel members found the case for potassium so compelling that they raised the recommendations from 3,500 mg per day to 4,700 mg.

Unfortunately, Americans currently consume far less than that amount. Multiple daily servings of fruit, vegetables, and dairy products are the best sources of potassium. The 10M panel said it was plausible that people taking diuretics that decrease potassium levels would need more than 4,700 mg, but the data are lacking. However, there are potassium-sparing diuretics on the market, such as amiloride (Midamor) and spironolactone (Aldactone).



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