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WARNING - LOW POTASSIUM IS DANGEROUS

Freddd

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Hi Fred,

The RDA for potassium is roughly 3500-4700 mgs. In general, do you think we need more than that during this rebuilding/healing process?
Hi Dan,

I don't know. What I will say is that the amount listed is for steady-state situations, healing ongoing at a replacement pace. With onset of healing as it occurs I would not be surprised to find out that the need goes up even 50% or so. When I started the l-carnitine fumarate by thigh muscles on top were the thickness of my thumb. I lost 45 pounds of water in 3 months. In a year I put 50 pounds of muscle on my body and my thighs became normal. In two years they were back to my skier thighs. How many hundreds of extra grams of potassium did it take to make that much tissue? In the healing of my skin, I didn't add much tissue I don't think. But I had a whole new layer of healthy skin that formed under the top layer of messed uo skin that sloughed off. My blood didn't get more normal until I took Metafolin, and again I had an increased need for potassium.. The amount I needed also went down as each round of healing completed. The paradoxical folate deficiency threw monkey wrench into the works by causing a yoyo effect of my potassium need. With onset of edema my potassium need goes down. When the water pours off I need a lot more potassium. There are a lot of factors to consider.
 

Pea

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Symptoms

A small drop in potassium usually doesn't cause symptoms. However, a big drop in the level can be life threatening.
Symptoms of hypokalemia include:
Abnormal heart rhythms (dysrhythmias), especially in people with heart disease
Constipation
Fatigue
Muscle damage (rhabdomyolysis)
Muscle weakness or spasms
Paralysis (which can include the lungs)

Over time, lack of potassium can lead to kidney damage (hypokalemic nephropathy).
If some of these are symptoms for which you're treating B12 with, how do you know if it's potassium deficiency, or the symptom getting worse?

Would hiccups be considered a "muscle spasm" ?

Isn't too much potassium dangerous too?

There is a reference in Wiki's B12 info about the danger of low potassium when supplementing B12 as the body rebalances.
 

adreno

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There is a reference in Wiki's B12 info about the danger of low potassium when supplementing B12 as the body rebalances.
The only reference to potassium I can find in the B12 wiki is this:

Potassium: Potassium supplements can reduce absorption of vitamin B12 in some people. This effect has been reported with potassium chloride and, to a lesser extent, with potassium citrate. Potassium might contribute to vitamin B12 deficiency in some people with other risk factors, but routine supplements are not necessary.
So it look like potassium can actually reduce absorption of B12?
 

Rosebud Dairy

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Now have a scrip for K-dur (potassium chloride) 10 MEQ ER to use as needed. - MERELY a rescue/emergency dose, not to be used for my daily doses -- will probably only use 1-2 days out of the month.

Has anyone with GI distress used Sodium Bicarbonate/Potassium Bicarbonate (2:1) successfully for potassium supplementation without additional GI distress? I have not used it yet because of that.
 

snowathlete

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The RDA for potassium is roughly 3500-4700 mgs.
The only Potasium i could get easily in the shops (Holland and Barrett) in the UK, was Potasium Gluconate, 99mg capsules. Id need to take like half a bottle a day even at the above rate. Is that right?

Ive been on the protocol for several days now, just under a week i think, and have taken one potasium tablet a day. Not had any problems, but i havent started the Dibencozide, or the other possible critical co factors, i've ordered L-carnitine fumarate, Alpha Lipoic Acid. So maybe im still stalled.
 

Crux

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Hi All;
I hope not to confuse this, but I'll describe the bits I've learned about Potassium supplementation. Some of the compounds may be more suitable than others depending on one's profile. Potassium chloride is a bit acidic because of the chloride. Although we need chloride for many functions, like forming hydrochloric acid, it may be too much for some people. Potassium bicarbonate is very alkaline. It can tend to neutralize stomach acid, sometimes causing nausea,especially if food is present. It can also cause diarrhea, probably because of this. Potassium gluconate is a more neutral PH, and tends to cause less GI distress. But it can also cause problems if taken in single high dosages. We're attempting to approximate food potassium intake, but potassium supplements are much more quickly absorbed,so smaller more frequent amounts seem to work better with this. Some people may do better with a dilute form of potassium, such as a mix in a large container of water, sipped through out the day. Also, many vitamins have an agonistic/ antagonistic relationship. It's true for potassium and B12. I still struggle with this. And when we are juggling other supplements, meds., etc., it can be daunting to try to discover if one is offending the other, or if another variable in our condition is causing some confusion. This has become my occupation.
 

adreno

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Hi All;
I hope not to confuse this, but I'll describe the bits I've learned about Potassium supplementation. Some of the compounds may be more suitable than others depending on one's profile. Potassium chloride is a bit acidic because of the chloride. Although we need chloride for many functions, like forming hydrochloric acid, it may be too much for some people. Potassium bicarbonate is very alkaline. It can tend to neutralize stomach acid, sometimes causing nausea,especially if food is present. It can also cause diarrhea, probably because of this. Potassium gluconate is a more neutral PH, and tends to cause less GI distress. But it can also cause problems if taken in single high dosages. We're attempting to approximate food potassium intake, but potassium supplements are much more quickly absorbed,so smaller more frequent amounts seem to work better with this. Some people may do better with a dilute form of potassium, such as a mix in a large container of water, sipped through out the day. Also, many vitamins have an agonistic/ antagonistic relationship. It's true for potassium and B12. I still struggle with this. And when we are juggling other supplements, meds., etc., it can be daunting to try to discover if one is offending the other, or if another variable in our condition is causing some confusion. This has become my occupation.
How about potassium citrate?
 

Freddd

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If some of these are symptoms for which you're treating B12 with, how do you know if it's potassium deficiency, or the symptom getting worse?

Would hiccups be considered a "muscle spasm" ?

Isn't too much potassium dangerous too?

There is a reference in Wiki's B12 info about the danger of low potassium when supplementing B12 as the body rebalances.
Hi Pea,

Would hiccups be considered a "muscle spasm" ?

Not that I am aware of. Interesting thought though. I used to have a lot of hiccups, now I never have them. I don't know why on either end.

If some of these are symptoms for which you're treating B12 with, how do you know if it's potassium deficiency, or the symptom getting worse?



Isn't too much potassium dangerous too?

It is very difficult for most people to achieve "too much potassium" as usually any excess is merely excreted in the urine. If you have kidney damage that's different. At least one article I read said that to have "too much potassium" a person would have to take multiples of what they need every day for a year or more.
 

adreno

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There is a reference in Wiki's B12 info about the danger of low potassium when supplementing B12 as the body rebalances.
Ok, I found your reference in the B12 deficiency wiki: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vitamin_B12_deficiency

Hypokalemia, an excessively low potassium level in the blood, is anecdotally reported as a complication of vitamin B12 repletion after deficiency. Excessive quantities of potassium are used by newly growing and dividing hematopoeitic cells, depleting circulating stores of the mineral.
That's interesting.
 

Crux

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Hi Adreno;
I just dipped some PH paper into a solution of potassium citrate and water, the PH was 8. The potassium bicarb. was 9 or above. When I added the potassium citrate solution to about an ounce of apple cider vinegar, it did not raise the PH. So, even though the potassium citrate is an alkaline PH, it appears to be mild enough to not disturb stomach PH, unless the stomach acid is way low, I guess.
 
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I can't resist sharing this posting from the snopes website where someone calculates the lethal dose of potassium and determines how many bananas it would take to kill you:

"According to this website, each banana has 806 mg of potassium.

According to wikipedia, the oral LD50 of potassium chloride is 2.5 g/kg.
The atomic mass of potassium is 39 mg/mol, while the molecular weight of potassium chloride is about 74.5 g/mol. Therefore, the amount of potassium in 2.5 g/kg of potassium chloride is about 1.3 g/kg.

Since there are 0.806 mg potassium in one banana, this would lead to a banana LD50 of 1.6 bananas / kg (making a huge and largely unwarranted assumption that there is no effect on lethality whether it is taken as KCl or a banana).
So theoretically and 75 kg person could reach LD50 levels of potassium by eating 122 bananas.
I actually suspect that someone did some similar calculations to come up with the OP.

I don't think it would be possible to eat that amount of bananas fast enough to cause a lethal rise in potassium. Maybe someone with renal failure could.

ETA: If you replace the oral LD50 for KCl (2.5 g/kg) with the much lower intravenous LD50 (0.1 g/kg), you would actually get an LD50 of only 0.06 bananas/kg, which for a 75 kg person would be reached with about 5 bananas. That could be where the second comment got their number from, with some slightly different calculations.

But I expect that the oral LD50 would be a much better proxy for potassium in bananas.

ETAA: Crap, the calculations were based on the potassium content in 250 g of banana, not one banana like I thought. It looks like your typical banana weighs about half that, so adjust the numbers to LD50 of 3.2 bananas/kg, which would be 244 bananas for a 75 kg person."

From: http://message.snopes.com/showthread.php?t=71459
 

adreno

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Hi Adreno;
I just dipped some PH paper into a solution of potassium citrate and water, the PH was 8. The potassium bicarb. was 9 or above. When I added the potassium citrate solution to about an ounce of apple cider vinegar, it did not raise the PH. So, even though the potassium citrate is an alkaline PH, it appears to be mild enough to not disturb stomach PH, unless the stomach acid is way low, I guess.
Ok, thanks. I have only tried citrate and gluconate so far. Seems that gluconate causes me more GI distress than citrate, not sure why. I'm taking about 2000mg per day, and both versions give me some IBS symptoms. I'm really not sure how to handle it.
 

adreno

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I can't resist sharing this posting from the snopes website where someone calculates the lethal dose of potassium and determines how many bananas it would take to kill you:

"According to this website, each banana has 806 mg of potassium.

According to wikipedia, the oral LD50 of potassium chloride is 2.5 g/kg.
The atomic mass of potassium is 39 mg/mol, while the molecular weight of potassium chloride is about 74.5 g/mol. Therefore, the amount of potassium in 2.5 g/kg of potassium chloride is about 1.3 g/kg.

Since there are 0.806 mg potassium in one banana, this would lead to a banana LD50 of 1.6 bananas / kg (making a huge and largely unwarranted assumption that there is no effect on lethality whether it is taken as KCl or a banana).
So theoretically and 75 kg person could reach LD50 levels of potassium by eating 122 bananas.
I actually suspect that someone did some similar calculations to come up with the OP.

I don't think it would be possible to eat that amount of bananas fast enough to cause a lethal rise in potassium. Maybe someone with renal failure could.

ETA: If you replace the oral LD50 for KCl (2.5 g/kg) with the much lower intravenous LD50 (0.1 g/kg), you would actually get an LD50 of only 0.06 bananas/kg, which for a 75 kg person would be reached with about 5 bananas. That could be where the second comment got their number from, with some slightly different calculations.

But I expect that the oral LD50 would be a much better proxy for potassium in bananas.

ETAA: Crap, the calculations were based on the potassium content in 250 g of banana, not one banana like I thought. It looks like your typical banana weighs about half that, so adjust the numbers to LD50 of 3.2 bananas/kg, which would be 244 bananas for a 75 kg person."

From: http://message.snopes.com/showthread.php?t=71459
I like that! I do think it is impossible to overdose on potassium through food alone.
 

Pea

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Adreno, here is the Wiki warning in the B12 Supplements under Adverse Effects - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vitamin_B12#Supplements

Vitamin B12 has extremely low toxicity and even taking it in enormous doses appears not to be harmful to healthy individuals.[17][18]
Hematologic: Peripheral vascular thrombosis has been reported. Treatment of vitamin B12 deficiency can unmask polycythemia vera, which is characterized by an increase in blood volume and the number of red blood cells. The correction of megaloblastic anemia with vitamin B12 can result in fatal hypokalemia and gout in susceptible individuals, and it can obscure folate deficiency in megaloblastic anemia. Caution is warranted.
 

Rosebud Dairy

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Can a 60 mg dose of dibencozide POSSIBLY induce low potassium overnight?
Still taking NOW miltimineral with D.

symptoms being nausea and IBS-d?
 

Freddd

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Can a 60 mg dose of dibencozide POSSIBLY induce low potassium overnight?
Still taking NOW miltimineral with D.

symptoms being nausea and IBS-d?

Hi Rosebud,

Based on limited experience a 60mg dose shouldn't produce any more tissue formation overnight than 3mg. It penetrates the CNS and occupies mitochoindria and helps rebuild myelin and neurons, which are low volume things. I suppose if you had a lot of muscle tissue in prgress already maybe it could step it up a bit. On the other hand perhaps it has helped penetrate the smooth muscles of the digestive systyem and stepped up peristalsis which can have those indirect effects. An extra dose of potassium could tell you in less than an hour if it is low potassium. Do you have a lot of constipation or the IBS of alternating constipation-diarrhea? The question is did you have a noticable change in anything neurological like tingling in nerves, brightening of senses, increasd mental energy, mood etc?
 

Rosebud Dairy

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Lots of nerve tingling upon waking

Just PURE IBS-d type.

But my house has been passing around a stomach virus, and I have had it now for over a week, I think

The potassium dose did help the nausea a bit, so that is a clue.

Yesterday, I felt much brighter, got lots done around the house.....catching up from the stomach virus.

Today, everything feels awful......maybe I am just plain old sick.
 

Rosebud Dairy

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I have to say the gut had really settled down a lot last week when I was very careful with methylfolate dosing, and now this week, it is back to my same old same old awful.

Maybe I just cannot lapse right now on methylcobalamin doses (Jarrow), either.
 

Pea

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Hi Pea,

Would hiccups be considered a "muscle spasm" ?

Not that I am aware of. Interesting thought though. I used to have a lot of hiccups, now I never have them. I don't know why on either end.

If some of these are symptoms for which you're treating B12 with, how do you know if it's potassium deficiency, or the symptom getting worse?

Isn't too much potassium dangerous too?
It is very difficult for most people to achieve "too much potassium" as usually any excess is merely excreted in the urine. If you have kidney damage that's different. At least one article I read said that to have "too much potassium" a person would have to take multiples of what they need every day for a year or more.
But then I wonder why most multi-vitamin supplements contain such a tiny amount of potassium ?
 

Pea

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So I'm reading -
Potassium, sodium and chloride comprise the electrolyte family of minerals. Called electrolytes because they conduct electricity when dissolved in water, these minerals work together closely. About 95% of the potassium in the body is stored within cells, while sodium and chloride are predominantly located outside the cell.

Potassium is especially important in regulating the activity of muscles and nerves. The frequency and degree to which our muscles contract, and the degree to which our nerves become excitable, both depend heavily on the presence of potassium in the right amount.


So in my friend's particular case, his sodium & chloride have always always been low, and his potassium has always been right in the middle.

What does this imbalance mean for him as far as his muscles functioning, and potassium supplementation?

And does any of this point to renal disease?