Potassium

Potassium 

Potassium is an essential bulk element* for humans. Almost all of the potassium in the body is found within the cells (98%), primarily in the muscle cells. Less potassium is found in the cells of the liver, bones and red blood cells (erythrocytes). In food, potassium is mainly found in apricots, bananas, carrots, kohlrabi, avocado and tomatoes, but also in concentrated forms such as tomato paste or dried fruit. Nuts, some flours (spelt, rye, whole buckwheat), and even dark chocolate are also high in potassium (1). Due to the high intake of fruit and vegetables, vegetarians and vegans in particular are usually sufficiently supplied (2). 

*Bulk elements are designated as such because their daily requirement is over 100mg. Accordingly, the recommended daily intake of trace elements is less than 100 mg. The distinction between bulk and trace elements is purely quantitative (3). 

 

Potassium – the most important tasks in brief 

  • Potassium contributes to the normal functioning of the nervous system 
  • Potassium contributes to normal muscle function 
  • Potassium helps maintain normal blood pressure (4) 

Not only can potassium maintain normal blood pressure, for people with high blood pressure, a potassium-rich diet can actually lower blood pressure, thereby reducing the risk of stroke. This effect was observed above all with a potassium intake of between 3500 mg and 4700 mg per day (1). 

 

Potassium imbalances 

A Potassium deficiency (hypokalemia) can be triggered by severe loss of fluids, e.g. through vomiting, use of laxatives or diuretics, as well as chronic diarrhea. Other causes can be long-term malnutrition and certain diseases. Potassium deficiency due to insufficient intake of potassium from the diet is rare (1). 

At a Potassium oversupply (hyperkalemia) excretion via the kidneys can be disturbed, but degrading metabolic processes and damage to body cells or the intake of certain medications can also be the cause of too much potassium. Hyperkalemia is also usually not to be feared due to an excessive intake of potassium from food. However, caution should be exercised when taking potassium supplements, especially those containing only potassium. It is therefore important, especially with potassium-containing mono-preparations, to only take them under medical supervision (1). 

Hyper- and hypokalemia are disturbances in the potassium balance and can have serious consequences. These include muscle weakness and paralysis, as well as cardiac arrhythmia. In the worst case, they can lead to cardiac arrest (1, 2, 5). 

 

Your daily need for potassium 

The German Society for Nutrition recommends that adults and pregnant women consume 4000 mg of potassium per day, and breastfeeding women even 4400 mg of potassium per day (1). 

 

Which AgilNature® products contain potassium?  

Product 

microgram 

* NRV 

CardioAgil 

75 mg per capsule 

3,75% 

BalanceAgil 

100 mg per capsule 

5% 

 

*NutrientReference Value=percentage of the reference value according to Annex XIII of the Food Information Regulation VO (EC) No. 1169/2011.

 

 

Literature: 

  1. DGE (2016): Selected questions and answers on potassium. In: German Society for Nutrition e. V. (DGE). https://www.dge.de/index.php?id=631 (accessed on February 21, 2022) 
  2. Biesalski, Hans Konrad; Bischoff, Stephan C.; Pirlich, Matthias; Weimann, Arved (ed.) (2018): Nutritional Medicine. Based on the curriculum for nutritional medicine of the German Medical Association. With the collaboration of Michael Adolph, Jann Arends, Ulrike Arens-Azevêdo and Christine von Arnim. 5th, completely revised and expanded edition. Stuttgart: Georg Thieme Verlag. 
  3. Rehner, Gertrude; Daniel, Hannelore (2010): Biochemistry of Nutrition. 3. edition Heidelberg: Spectrum Acad. Verl. (spectrum textbook). 
  4. European Commission (2022): Nutrition and Health Claims. In: European Commission. https://ec.europa.eu/food/safety/labelling_nutrition/claims/register/public/?event=search (accessed on February 21, 2022)  
  5. Lewis III, James L.: Overview of the function of potassium in the body. In: MSD Manual Patient Edition. Available online at https://www.msdmanuals.com/de/heim/hormon-und-metabolic-diseases/electrolyte-balance/%C3%BCerblick-%C3%BCber-die-funktion-of-kalium-im-k%C3%B6rper . (accessed on 02/22/2022)