Thursday, 9 January 2014

Dietary Minerals - Potassium and hypertension

Dietary Minerals are the group of minerals essential for our body to sustain normal functions and physical health.
In General, potassium is an essential mineral for our body  to build proteins and muscle, break down carbohydrates, maintain normal body growth and normal heart electricity, etc.
Blood pressure is the force of blood pushing against the walls of the arteries as the heart pumps out blood. High blood pressure means raising pressure in your heart.If it stays high over time it can damage the body in many ways.
The effects
Administration of high potassium diets is found to be effective in lowering of blood pressure in some animal models of hypertension. Researchers suggested that the effect may be the result of diuretic action in reducing the extracellular fluid volume, thus decreased blood pressure. Others insisted that the lowering blood pressure of high potassium diet may influence the potassium modifies central or the peripheral neural mechanisms in regulating blood pressure. In fact, increase fruit and vegetable intake such as banana, papaya, mango, spinach, tomatoes, etc., may help increase dietary potassium and reduce hypertension-related disease.
Side effects
Overdose of potassium, also known as hyperkalemia may cause symptoms of hypotension, stomach cramps, diarrhea, vomiting, irritability, fatigue, etc., and in some cases, it can be life-threatening due to electrolyte abnormality.

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(1) Role of dietary potassium in the treatment of hypertension by Treasure J, Ploth D.(PubMed)
(2) Potassium and fruit and vegetable intakes in relation to social determinants and access to produce in New York City by Loftfield E, Yi S, Curtis CJ, Bartley K, Kansagra SM.(PubMed)
(3) Endoscopic Removal of Pharmacobezoar in Case of Intentional Potassium Overdose by Briggs AL, Deal LL.(PubMed)

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