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Can High Potassium Cause High Blood Pressure

Does Zinc Affect Potassium Levels

Can low potassium cause high blood pressure

These results suggest that dietary zinc influences the body sodium and potassium status of animals, that the influence of dietary zinc on organ and peripheral tissues is tissue-specific, that zinc supplementation appears to be beneficial for salt balance of kidney, and that hair sodium content may be a new criterion as.

Problems With Food Frequency Questionnaires

The researchers felt because they used food frequency questionnaires that a more accurate study could be obtained. They plan to use a prospective trial using a more objective measurement of sodium and potassium .

The problems with using a food frequency questionnaire to estimate potassium and sodium intake are that the memory of the participants may be inaccurate, and the estimates of how much sodium is in the food may be considerably inaccurate. Sodium content of kimchi can be off considerably because each individual uses different methods to prepare kimchi. The researchers used a standard estimate to determine the amount of sodium in the participants’ diet.

Special Precautions & Warnings

Pregnancy or breast-feedingLIKELY SAFEUNSAFE

Disorders of the digestive tract that might alter the speed food and supplements pass through the body : If you have one of these disorders, do not take potassium supplements. Potassium could build up to dangerous levels in your body.

Allergy to aspirin or tartrazine products: Avoid potassium supplements that contain tartrazine.

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What Does Potassium Do

Potassium is essential for life. It allows the nerves to respond to stimulation and muscles to contract , including those in the heart. It also offsets the effect of sodium in raising blood pressure, and moves nutrients into cells and waste products out of cells.

The potential health benefits of potassium include:

  • reducing blood pressure
  • preventing kidney stones
  • reducing water retention

The kidneys control potassium levels in the body and remove excess potassium in urine. If the kidneys do not work properly, potassium may build up in the blood. This can be a very dangerous condition because it may cause the heart to beat irregularly or stop beating.

How Does Potassium Affect High Blood Pressure

Can low potassium cause high blood pressure

The treatment of hypertension involves more than just antihypertensive drugs. In addition to exercise, maintaining an ideal weight, and quitting cigarettes, diet plays an important role in controlling blood pressure.

While most people are aware that too much sodium in the diet can increase blood pressure, many are unaware of how too little of another mineralpotassiumalso contributes.

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Potassium Loss From Blood Pressure Drugs May Explain Higher Risk Of Adult Diabetes

Johns Hopkins researchers have discovered that a drop in blood potassium levels caused by diuretics commonly prescribed for high blood pressure could be the reason why people on those drugs are at risk for developing type 2 diabetes. The drugs helpfully accelerate loss of fluids, but also deplete important chemicals, including potassium, so that those who take them are generally advised to eat bananas and other potassium-rich foods to counteract the effect.

“Previous studies have told us that when patients take diuretic thiazides, potassium levels drop and the risk of diabetes climbs to 50 percent,” says lead researcher Tariq Shafi, M.D., M.H.S., of the Department of Nephrology at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. “Now, for the first time, we think we have concrete information connecting the dots.”

Thiazides, such as chlorthalidone, are an inexpensive and highly effective way to treat high blood pressure and have been used widely for decades. However, their association with diabetes has forced many hypertension suffers to use other medications that can be several times as expensive, says Shafi.

“This study shows us that as long as physicians monitor and regulate potassium levels, thiazides could be used safely, saving patients thousands of dollars a year,” says Shafi. “It could be as simple as increasing the consumption of potassium-rich foods like bananas and oranges and/or reducing salt intake, both of which will keep potassium from dropping.”

Effects On Your Kidneys

High potassium doesnt cause kidney conditions, but its generally directly related to your kidneys. You may be more susceptible to high potassium if you have kidney failure or another kidney condition. Thats because your kidneys are meant to balance the potassium levels in your body.

Your body absorbs potassium through foods, drinks, and sometimes supplements. Your kidneys excrete leftover potassium through your urine. But if your kidneys arent working as they should, your body may not be able to remove extra potassium.

High potassium may also cause other symptoms and effects. This includes:

  • abdominal conditions, including nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and cramping
  • numbness or tingling in your arms, hands, legs, or feet
  • changes in mood, such as irritability
  • muscle weakness

These symptoms may slowly develop in your body and be so mild that you dont even notice them. Subtle symptoms could make it difficult to diagnose high potassium. Its important to see your doctor for routine bloodwork on a regular basis.

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How Does Potassium Lower Bp

The opposite effect is supposed to be determined by high potassium intake. Figure illustrates how changes in potassium intake may affect BP through an adrenorenal pathway involving NCC. Yet, still other renal tubular mechanisms may contribute to explain the effect of potassium intake on BP, and some of them are being studied, such as tissue kallikrein and kinase pathways . Of note, there is also a gastrointestinal regulation of potassium excretion that increases urinary potassium excretion after meals independent of changes in serum potassium .

Several non-renal mechanisms for the hypotensive effects of potassium have also been proposed, including reduced renal renin release, decreased vascular smooth muscle cell proliferation, reduced vascular smooth muscle cell migration, decreased free radical formation, reduced low-density lipoprotein cholesterol oxidation, decreased platelet aggregation, improvement of endothelium-dependent vasodilatation and reduction of oxidative stress . Experimentally, we have demonstrated that an increase in potassium in DOCA-salt uninephrectomized mice reverses cardiac and renal hypertrophy and restores vasorelaxation of resistance arterioles independent of BP . All these observations support the role of potassium in lowering BP, but also in preventing the cardiac and cerebral complications of hypertension.

Data Extraction Risk Of Bias And Quality Assessment

Potassium Deficiency Could Be The Cause of Your High Blood Pressure

Two reviewers independently extracted relevant population and intervention characteristics of each study by using a standard data extraction form. A third reviewer checked extracted data, and all disagreements were resolved through consensus. We requested any relevant missing information from the original study authors. In the case of duplicate publications and companion papers of a primary publication, we evaluated all available data to maximise the yield of information.

For randomised controlled trials, we assessed the risk of bias associated with the method of sequence generation , allocation concealment , blinding , selective reporting , loss to follow-up , and completeness of reporting outcome data . In cohort studies, we additionally evaluated the risk of bias associated with methods of measuring exposure , collecting outcome data , and selecting study participants . We rated the risk of bias as being low, unclear, or high according to established criteria.2527

We used funnel plots to assess for the presence of small study bias.2829 We generated risk of bias graph and risk of bias summary figures for each study type separately in adults and children. We used GRADEProfiler software to assess the quality of the body of evidence according to the methodology of grading of recommendations assessment, development, and evaluation .30

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Potassium Linked To Low Blood Pressure

Written byMohan GarikiparithiPublished onApril 14, 2017

High blood pressure is one of the leading causes of heart disease, resulting in the deaths of nearly 610,000 people in the U.S. alone. For decades, doctors and health professionals have advocated for exercise and eating healthier diets to help curb this statistic, but to no avail. Perhaps the type of healthy food may also play a role, however, as a new study links increased dietary potassium with lower blood pressure.

Eating potassium-rich foods like sweet potatoes, avocados, spinach, beans, bananasand even coffeecould be key to lowering blood pressure, according to Alicia McDonough, Ph.D., professor of cell and neurobiology at the Keck School of Medicine of the University of Southern California .

McDonough and her colleagues recognize how high blood pressure is a global trend affecting nearly one billion people worldwide. This pandemic has led to increasing rates of heart disease and stroke, becoming one of the worlds most common contributors to global mortality rates. The World Health Organization estimates that high blood pressure is responsible for at least 51 percent of deaths due to stroke, and 45 percent of deaths due to heart disease.

Decreasing sodium intake is a well-established way to lower blood pressure, McDonough says, but evidence suggests that increasing dietary potassium may have an equally important effect on hypertension.

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How Does A High Potassium Level Affect The Heart

A healthy potassium blood level is between 3.5 and 5.0 milliequivalents per liter .

Staying within this range supports electric signaling in the heart. It helps your muscles function properly, including those that control your heartbeat and breathing.

Having too much potassium in your blood is known as hyperkalemia. This condition is more common in people with health conditions, including congestive heart failure.

In fact, ACE inhibitors and beta-blockers used to treat cardiovascular disease can cause your kidneys to retain potassium and lead to hyperkalemia.

Untreated high potassium levels in your blood can cause further heart problems. Hyperkalemia can lead to an irregular heartbeat, known as an arrhythmia. It can even result in a heart attack or death if its not diagnosed and treated.

Many people with hyperkalemia notice few if any symptoms. Those who do may have:

  • nausea
  • a weak or irregular heartbeat
  • abdominal cramps

Keeping your potassium blood levels in check is critical if you have cardiovascular disease.

Keep in mind that a low blood potassium level can cause blood vessels in your heart to stiffen. Low levels have been linked to:

  • stroke
  • high blood pressure
  • heart disease

Talk to your doctor to ensure youre getting the right amount of potassium in your diet, especially if youre at risk for heart disease.

  • avocados

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How Does Potassium Lower Blood Pressure

Potassium and blood pressure have an inverse relationship to one another. Patients with elevated potassium have lower blood pressure, and patients who have low potassium have an elevated blood pressure, says Craig Beavers, Pharm.D., a member of the American College of Cardiology s Cardiovascular Team Section and Leadership Council and director of cardiovascular services at Baptist Health Paducah. Why? It has to do with the relationship between electrolytes and fluid in your body.

Potassium, sodium, and magnesium are all examples of electrolytes that help maintain the proper fluid and blood volume balance in your body. The role of sodium in high blood pressure is well-known. Too much salt can result in elevated blood pressure in susceptible individuals. Low potassium intake can have the same effect.

Thats because potassium helps kick sodium out of your system. The more potassium you eat, the more sodium you lose through your urine, according to the American Heart Association. If youve got a lot of sodium in your system, it can lead to fluid retention and that makes your heart work harder because theres more fluid to push around. That harder work raises your blood pressure and increases your risk for cardiovascular disease.

The Problem With High Potassium

Does Potassium Prevent High Blood Pressure?

Too much potassium is called hyperkalemia. It can be a problem in people with poorly controlled diabetes.

High blood sugar damages the kidneys, which normally remove extra potassium from your body. People with diabetes and high potassium are more likely to have heart problems and other complications.

Your doctor might suggest tips like these to lower your potassium if it’s too high:

  • Eat a low-potassium diet.

Diabetes in Control: “Hyperkalemia Associated with Poor Outcomes for Diabetes Patients.”

Diabetic Medicine: “Hyperkalaemia in people with diabetes: occurrence, risk factors and outcomes in a Danish population-based cohort study.”

Expert Review of Endocrinology & Metabolism: “Potassium and risk of type 2 diabetes.”

Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada: “Aldosterone Antagonists.”

Journal of Physiology & Biochemistry: “The role of dietary potassium in hypertension and diabetes.”

Lab Tests Online: “Potassium.”

Mayo Clinic: “Angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors,” “Diabetic ketoacidosis: Symptoms & causes,” “Diabetic nephropathy: Symptoms & causes,” “Diuretics: A cause of low potassium?”

National Kidney Foundation: “Six Steps to Controlling High Potassium.”

National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases: “Symptoms & Causes of Diabetes,” “What is Diabetes?”

NIH Office of Dietary Supplements: “Potassium.”

UCSF Health: “Potassium test.”

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Hyperkalemia And Potassium Shifts

Potassium can move out of and into cells. Our total body potassium stores are approximately 50 mEq/kg of body weight. At any given time, about 98% of the total potassium in the body is located inside of cells , with only 2% located outside of cells . The blood tests for measurement of potassium levels measure only the potassium that is outside of the cells. Therefore, conditions that can cause potassium to move out of the cells into the blood circulation can increase the blood potassium levels even though the total amount of potassium in the body has not changed.

One example of potassium shift causing hyperkalemia is diabetic ketoacidosis. Insulin is vital to patients with type 1 diabetes. Without insulin, patients with type 1 diabetes can develop severely elevated blood glucose levels. Lack of insulin also causes the breakdown of fat cells, with the release of ketones into the blood, turning the blood acidic . The acidosis and high glucose levels in the blood work together to cause fluid and potassium to move out of the cells into the blood circulation. Patients with diabetes often also have diminished kidney capacity to excrete potassium into the urine. The combination of potassium shift out of cells and diminished urine potassium excretion causes hyperkalemia.

Another cause of hyperkalemia is tissue destruction, dying cells release potassium into the blood circulation. Examples of tissue destruction causing hyperkalemia include:

Which Medications Can Lower Potassium Levels

  • Diuretics. Diuretics like , , , and are the main medication-related cause of low potassium levels. These medications are commonly used to treat high blood pressure, heart failure, and lower extremity swelling. Potassium follows water out of your kidneys to your bladder when your make urineso diuretics, which increase urination, may lower your potassium levels.*

  • Albuterol., used in asthma inhalers like , , and their generics may lower your potassium levels. Albuterol stimulates your body to release more insulin, which takes potassium out of your bloodstream and puts it into your cells, essentially lowering the amount of potassium circulating in your system. Know that nebulizer treatments lower potassium levels even more than inhalers.

  • Insulin.Insulin drugs at high doses may lower potassium levels in the blood by shifting potassium from your bloodstream into your cells.

  • Sudafed. is available over the counter as a decongestant. It also pushes potassium out of your bloodstream and into your cells.

  • Laxatives and enemas. Laxatives and enemas at high doses can cause a loss of potassium in your stool. Its worse if they cause diarrhea.

  • Risperdal and Seroquel. and are antipsychotic medications that may cause hypokalemia, but its a rare complication.

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Potassium: A Possible Key To High Blood Pressure

Mention high blood pressure and most of the diet-conscious among us think “lower salt intake” to manage it. And there has been controversy about who should decrease their salt consumption and by how much as we’ve previously discussed. What’s less often addressed is the role of potassium in the management of hypertension . However, a recent review in the American Journal of Physiology addresses the possibility that diets higher in K+ may well be as important a means of reducing the toll of HTN thus decreasing the prevalence of cardiovascular and kidney diseases.

Led by Dr. Alicia A. McDonough, a team of investigators from the University of Southern California in Los Angeles reviewed data from population, interventional, and mechanistic studies to determine the relative influences of dietary sodium and potassium on the incidence of HTN.

They also reviewed interventional studies in which, for example, dietary K+ was supplemented. One such study in hypertensive individuals who controlled their condition with medication demonstrated that K+ supplementation for one year led to over 80 percent of the participants reducing their use of medications by 50 percent, compared to 29 percent of the non-supplemented control group. Further, consumption of the DASH diet for 30 days resulted in lower blood pressure whether the individuals consumed low, moderate, or high levels of Na+.

Effect Of Increased Potassium Intake On Cardiovascular Risk Factors And Disease: Systematic Review And Meta

Potassium Benefits High Blood Pressure | LOWER BLOOD PRESSURE With Potassium | Blood Pressure
  • Nancy J Aburto, scientist1,
  • Sara Hanson, intern1,
  • Hialy Gutierrez, independent consultant2,
  • Lee Hooper, senior lecturer in research synthesis and nutrition3,
  • Paul Elliott, professor4,
  • Francesco P Cappuccio, Cephalon professor of cardiovascular medicine & epidemiology5
  • 1Nutrition Policy and Scientific Advice Unit, Department of Nutrition for Health and Development, World Health Organization, 20 Avenue Appia, 1211 Geneva 27, Switzerland
  • 2200 Wheeler Avenue, Staten Island, NY 10314, USA
  • 3Norwich Medical School, University of East Anglia, Norwich NR4 7TJ, UK
  • 4Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics and MRC-HPA Centre for Environment and Health, Imperial College London, London, UK
  • 5World Health Organization Collaborating Centre for Nutrition, Warwick Medical School, Coventry CV2 2DX, UK
  • Correspondence to: N J
    • Accepted 18 February 2013

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    Overlooking The Potassium Interaction Was A Medical Mistake:

    This was an example of a serious medical mistake. The new physician clearly did not take time to review all the prior medications that had been prescribed and notice the potassium interaction. People take potassium supplements to compensate for the depletion of potassium brought on by diuretics like hydrochlorothiazide or furosemide . But when the prescription was changed to the ACE inhibitor enalapril, the doctor should have been far more careful to check the medical records and ask about salt substitutes. Fortunately, the pharmacist saved the day .

    Such mistakes are far more common than most people realize. Thats why we wrote Top Screwups Doctors Make and How to Avoid Them. It offers hundreds of questions to ask and tips to prevent this kind of potentially lethal error. In particular, there is information on common mistakes made with ACE inhibitors, diabetes drugs, hypothyroidism and heartburn. Heres a link to the Peoples Pharmacy Store if you would like a copy.


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