Our body cannot function properly if it lackscertain vital nutrient. Therefore, our general health depends on theproper amounts of vitamins, proteins and minerals, but also on the proper amountsof carbohydrates, fats and amino acids. When there is a deficiency of any ofthese necessary nutrients, our body will show certain signs of malfunctioning.
There are various minerals without which our bodycannot work normally and some of them are sodium, magnesium and potassium, but there are many others aswell. However, when it happens that there is insufficiency of any of theseminerals, the person will suffer from some discomforts since these minerals arethe most important and essential minerals that are necessary for a good health.
Biological functions of potassium
Potassium has many roles in our organism and among them are regulationof the acidity level in the organism, maintenance of water balance and control of the proper digestion. Furthermore, potassium also assists inthe transmission of the nerve impulses as well as in the regulation of themuscle contractions and proper working of the heart.
Causes of potassium deficiency
The major cause for the occurrence of potassiumdeficiency is unhealthy diet; the one that is poor in this mineral. It is veryimportant to take even a small amount of this mineral through the food everyday because otherwise, the potassium deficiency may cause long-term complications. The insufficient amount of potassium may occur alsodue to vomiting, as well as due to diarrhea, but there are also certainmedicines like cortisones, diuretics and medicines for regulation of high bloodpressure, which are likely to cause low levels of potassium in the organism. It is considered that low blood pressure isalso a potential culprit for the incidence of potassium deficiency.
Symptoms of potassium deficiency
We have already said that deficiency of any essentialmineral in the body leads to the appearance of certain symptoms. When the bodylacks potassium, hypokalemia is very likely to occur. This condition can be fatal, although it usually results in a chronic disease or in the aging process. There are several medical conditions that areclosely related to the potassium deficiency. These conditions are congestiveheart failure and arrhythmias, as well as depression and high blood pressure.
People with low levels of potassium usually experiencemuscle weakness, tiredness, problematic digestion, constipation and high blood pressure, but disturbed sleep, heart palpitations and irregular heartbeat might also be present. Furthermore, the symptoms of potassium deficiencyalso include temporary loss of memory, dry skin, nervousness and acute renal failure.