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Potassium in the human body

The role of potassium in the body is enormous. From this chemical element depends not only on the normal functioning of the excretory, musculoskeletal, cardiovascular and nervous systems, but other processes in the body. Despite the fact that it is well absorbed, with food by doing and a list of foods containing potassium is quite extensive, it is quickly excreted from the body. For this reason, it is important to maintain a balance of this element and to exclude the possibility of its deficiency.

The role of the body

In the body potassium is involved in many processes and performs a number of functions, including:

  • Maintenance of optimal intracellular pressure due to sodium-potassium balance, which is provided by this element along with sodium.
  • Thanks to the first paragraph, and the participation of potassium in the formation of fuel from glucose to maintain a good contraction of the muscle fibers, including the heart.
  • Supports liquid composition within cells.
  • Supports acid-alkaline balance in the fluids of the human body (included in their composition).
  • Is a catalyst in several organic reactions, including those that promote endurance and saturate the oxygen to the brain.
  • Involved in normal kidney function, helps to prevent swelling, the slags.
  • Conductivity pulses and nervous irritability are also provided with potassium.

A potassium deficiency: symptoms, causes

A deficiency of this chemical element in the body has its own name hypokalemia. If a person has the following symptoms, you should immediately consult a doctor. So, a high probability of hypokalemia, if there is:

  • disturbances in heart rhythm;
  • irritability;
  • tremor of hands, legs;
  • coordination disorder;
  • muscle weakness, frequent seizures, pain;
  • constant drowsiness;
  • fatigue.

Дефицит калия: симптомы, причины

Among the reasons that could cause a deficit of potassium in the body, physical stress with the abundant perspiration, and also:

  • in the diet, this element is supplied in insufficient quantity or the diet is dominated by foods high in sodium;
  • stress;
  • the use of diuretics, laxatives or hormonal drugs, resulting in excessive loss of fluid.

The excess of potassium: symptoms, causes

In medicine better known as hyperkalemia and may occur for the following reasons:

  • violation of potassium metabolism;
  • the insulin-deficient state;
  • kidney failure;
  • taking medication forfor a long time with no need to take them

An excess of this chemical element in the body is accompanied by characteristic symptoms, including:

  • frequent urination;
  • colic;
  • arrhythmia;
  • irritability;
  • sweating;
  • paralysis of the muscles.

It should be noted that the late decision of this problem in the future can lead to diabetes, so it is important to reduce the potassium level to normal and maintain it the right balance.

Potassium for athletes

Калий для спортсменов

The body of an athlete because of intense exercise and high energy losses especially is in dire need of potassium in sufficient quantity. This element participates in the work of the neuromuscular system, and with heavy loads of potassium excreted from the body through sweat. Potassium helps to restore energy after training, so it necessarily contains in drinks for athletes that need to consume after a workout. According to experts, foods that are trampled after exercise, should be as full of potassium.

What is the amount of potassium you should consume daily?

Daily intake of the element depends on the age category of the person. Children are recommended to take 15-30 mg per kilogram of weight for adults is one gram (minimum daily rate). When the intake of potassium below the specified norm for a long time starts to develop hypokalemia in severe.

The optimal dose of this element is two grams per day for adults, and for athletes and active people the norm is increased to 3 grams. However, at the time of exercise for muscle is better to increase the daily rate of potassium up to 4-5 grams.

Potassium-containing products

Калийсодержащие продукты

A list of products that contain this element, headed by green tea, cocoa and dried apricots. In 100 grams of the product contain 2.5 and 1.7 grams of potassium respectively. Next are cheese and milk. Also, this element is contained in the mushrooms, dried fruits, spinach, nuts, potatoes, bananas, avocados, peaches, tomatoes, beets, Brussels sprouts, kohlrabi, oatmeal, buckwheat.

It is important to know that a large amount of potassium remains in the water, so the products it's not recommended to soak and to cook possibly for a couple. In addition, many foods can be eaten raw.


The balance of potassium in the body can be easily supported, include in the diet a sufficient number of productscontaining this item. For this reason, potassium Supplements are appointed only in cases when the diagnosis of hypokalemia.

There are drugs that are assigned in the prevention of heart disease. Make a tool that contains magnesium and potassium, should be only on prescription.

Vitamin complexes also contain potassium – about 2% of the norm of the day. Special quality complexes for athletes always contains this element, along with magnesium and pyroxidine. Thus it is better to choose products from manufacturers. Restore potassium balance, you can use sports drinks that take after a workout.

In fact, if seriously to approach the question of power and to ensure intake of the daily requirement of this element, do not need any additional drugs, is that restorative vitamins. And with the appearance of symptoms that indicate an imbalance in potassium, you first need to contact the medical facility where the doctor will prescribe treatment.