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Urgent Advice Request - Low Potassium Levels?

Discussion in 'Detox: Methylation; B12; Glutathione; Chelation' started by pumpkin, Aug 12, 2016.

  1. pumpkin

    pumpkin

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    Hi there everybody,

    I hope everybody's well today. Sorry for the dramatic post title, but I would really appreciate some advice.

    Basically, I'm in a lot of pain! I think my potassium levels have dropped a bomb. I have:

    - cramping, in my feet, in my legs and my back has been in agony all day
    - feel nauseus, bloating, constipation/diarrea (however it's spelt)
    - weird kind of dizzy feeling in my head
    - I've asked my boyfriend to give me a back massage the past few days and every time he touches my kidney region I scream.

    It hurts so bad I just wanna cry and this isn't like me at all.

    I've started taking a lot of supplements these past few weeks, including vitamin D3, magnesium + calcium, Biotin, folate 400mg, but basically the symptoms started about 3 days ago. I started taking Vitamin B12 maybe 5 days ago, in doses of 5000mcg (a couple of days I took this twice). The first day or two I felt fantastic but now Iºm getting really bad really quickly.

    I have been really trying to ensure I take enough potassium in food each day. I've had smoothies with a glass of milk, 4 bananas, eaten 3 tomatoes, half an avocado, a potato, pumpkin... the juice of 2 oranges, each day. Today I literally ate 200mls of tomato puree, a sweet potato, juice of 1 lemon, 2 tomatoes and 3 hours ago I drank a smoothie of 7 bananas but I still feel bad. I'm worried about supplementing on potassium, overdosing and then dying, but now I'm worried about not getting enough.

    I'm gonna head to the 24 hour pharmacy now, (its nearly midnight here), but I took all my supplements to the doctor and a pharmacy last week and they just said the doses were harmless, so I'm not expecting great advice.

    If anybody has any experience/advice on this I would be extremely grateful.

    Thanks in advance.
     
    Jennifer J likes this.
  2. Hip

    Hip Senior Member

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    Could be muscle cramp / muscle inflammation, which can be extremely painful. I had some really sharp shooting pains in my kidney areas, so severe that I would sometime drop to the floor because the jolt of pain was so sharp.

    I first thought it might be kidney-related, especially as i had a recurrent kidney infection, but my doctor poked and prodded me knowingly, and determined it was most likely muscular, and recommended anti-inflammatories. I tried some ibuprofen, and sure enough, the pains were significantly lessened within an hour.

    What really helped the pain though was when I applied TENS microcurrent-type treatment to the muscles.


    Where did you get the idea your symptoms were potassium related? Is it from the Freddd B12 protocol? If you want potassium, you can buy Lo-Salt from a supermarket, which is 66% potassium chloride, 33% sodium chloride.
     
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  3. alicec

    alicec Senior Member

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    It is easy enough to test the idea that low potassium is responsible for the symptoms - take some potassium gluconate powder or potassium citrate capsules in decent doses (1/2-1 tsp or 3-6 capsules) every couple of hours and see if they diminish.

    The extra potassium won't hurt you if that is not your problem - though obviously you wouldn't continue if nothing changes.

    Take with food - it can irritate gut.
     
    Last edited: Aug 12, 2016
    pumpkin and Jennifer J like this.
  4. Chocolove

    Chocolove Tournament of the Phoenix - Rise Again

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    Pumpkin, it sounds like you need to get that checked out. Go to the Doc and have tests run because you might have a serious infection or something else. You don't want to let that progress.

    By the way, it would be wise not to take a whole lot of new supplements at once, because then if you have a problem you won't know what caused it. Try one thing and wait a couple of days to see your reaction before trying something else. Start low and go slow.
     
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  5. Mary

    Mary Senior Member

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    @pumpkin - the RDA for potassium is around 4500 mg. When I first started taking methylfolate 6 years ago, I initially felt quite a bit better for 2 or 3 days and then was hit with severe fatigue. I figured my potassium had tanked and started taking potassium. I titrated up to 1000 mg. a day over a couple of days - e.g., 400 or 600 mg. the first day in divided doses, and then on up to 1000, when the horrible fatigue started to go away. I was very uneasy about taking a potassium supplement at first, reading all the horrible things too much potassium can do. However, 1000 mg. was only 25% of the RDA. Also, it's very difficult to get too much potassium taken orally, unless your kidneys are bad.

    I now take 600 to 800 mg. potassium gluconate daily (in divided doses), as well as 1 or 2 glasses of low-sodium V8 (900 mg. potassium) and my levels stay pretty good. I've found it's impossible for me to get enough potassium in my food, and I can tell right away when my levels start to drop - if I forget to drink the V8, etc. - because I get muscle spasms/twitches in my feet and legs.

    So you may have an issue with low potassium even though you're taking lots of potassium rich foods. It is telling that your symptoms started some 2 or 3 days after you started the B12 - that's the right time frame in which potassium levels may tank when starting B12 or folate.

    However, it is concerning that your kidney area is so painful. You could have a kidney infection, or it could be a muscle spasm. You should probably make sure you don't have a kidney infection, which can be easily checked by your doctor.

    If you're going to try a potassium supplement, I would take 200 mg. 2 or 3 times a day, gradually increasing the dose and see if it helps your symptoms. It is important not to take a huge dose all at once. My low potassium symptoms start to go away pretty quickly once I get some potassium in my system.
     
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  6. pumpkin

    pumpkin

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    Thank you so much everyone, I can't tell you how much I appreciate your advice, I was really worried.The all night pharmacy refused to sell me potassium and the hospital couldn't tell me if I'd be there all night so I just came home and went to bed, only to wake up at 4am with the impression my heartbeat kept changing its rythm. Obviously I panicked!

    I'm about to eat my seventh banana in 5 hours lol (I haven't gone back to bed) Which is how many I ate at 8pm last night. All the cramps and nauseau and dizziness seems to go away provided I eat tonnes of bananas quickly, it's just that the symptoms come back a few hours later. I'm shocked by how much potassium I seem to need. I'm afraid to overdose but I'm gonna eat like 15 bananas for now and see how that goes. Hip thank you for your suggestion about the lo-salt, I'm gonna get some as soon as the shops open, the V8 also looks like a good option but apparently my supermarket doesn't sell it or tomato juice, so guess it's bananas and lo-salt for now.
     
  7. Valentijn

    Valentijn Senior Member

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    Chicken, potatoes, and orange juice are better sources of potassium than bananas, from what I recall. Might make your digestive tract a little happier too :p
     
    Jennifer J likes this.
  8. pumpkin

    pumpkin

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    Thanks for the advice Valentijn :) and love your signature quote!
     
    Valentijn likes this.
  9. alicec

    alicec Senior Member

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    You can but potassium gluconate and potassium citrate from iherb.
     
  10. Gondwanaland

    Gondwanaland Senior Member

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    Oxalates come to mind
     

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