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Potassium is an important mineral for the proper function of your cells, tissues and organs. It is also an electrolyte, a substance which conducts electricity. Crucial to proper heart function, potassium is important for digestion and muscle function as well. Foods that are rich in potassium include meat, some types of fish such as salmon, dairy products, legumes, and a range of fruits and vegetables that includes bananas, citrus, avocados, tomatoes, and cantaloupes.
Low potassium is called hypokalemia. Too much potassium is known as hyperkalemia. Low levels of potassium in your system can be caused by an excess of sodium, diarrhea, vomiting, excess sweating, malnutrition, malabsorption illnesses such as:
- Crohn's disease,
- by some diuretics
Fluoride & Headaches
A low level of potassium can be life threatening. It can lead to paralysis of the muscles including the heart muscle. Symptoms of hypokalemia include body weakness, lack of energy, muscle cramps, stomach problems and an irregular heartbeat. There are other symptoms as well, such as:
- poor circulation
- a bluish tint to the skin
- chronic fatigue syndrome
Low levels of potassium may also be linked to poor bone health and high blood pressure, reports the University of Maryland Medical Center 12. High levels of potassium can be dangerous as well, slowing your heart to critical levels.
- A low level of potassium can be life threatening.
Headaches come in the forms of tension headache, the most common type; migraines; cluster headaches; and sinus headaches. Tension headaches are caused by tight muscles in the shoulders, neck, scalp or jaw. Tension headaches can be triggered by stress, depression, anxiety, a lack of sleep or alcohol.
Potassium and Migraines
Effects of Zinc With Potassium
CAMBIA is a drug used to treat migraine headaches. It uses potassium bicarbonate to speed the delivery of the active ingredient in the drug, diclofenac, into your system. The potassium bicarbonate itself does not treat migraines, it just makes CAMBIA a quicker-acting drug. The safety and effectiveness of CAMBIA for cluster headaches has not been established. If you suffer from migraine headaches, consult your doctor before using CAMBIA.
- CAMBIA is a drug used to treat migraine headaches.
- The potassium bicarbonate itself does not treat migraines, it just makes CAMBIA a quicker-acting drug.
Dr. George Obikoya, writing for The Vitamin Nutrition Center website, says that potassium is a natural pain reliever 2. It helps heal cuts and bruises and contributes to a sense of well-being. It also helps control convulsions, headaches and migraines. As noted previously, headaches can be caused by low potassium levels.
- Dr. George Obikoya, writing for The Vitamin Nutrition Center website, says that potassium is a natural pain reliever 2.
- It helps heal cuts and bruises and contributes to a sense of well-being.
Fluoride & Headaches
Effects of Zinc With Potassium
How to Lower Potassium Levels
How Much Potassium Does a Female Need?
Differences Between Vitamin K & Potassium
Side Effects of Livaplex
Gatorade G2 Ingredients
Herbs That Lower Potassium Levels
Vitamins for Mononucleosis
Benicar & Potassium
- University of Maryland Medical Center: Potassium
- The Vitamins and Nutrition Center: Potassium Benefits
- MedlinePlus: Headache
- Rx List: Cambia
- Adebamowo SN, Spiegelman D, Flint AJ, Willett WC, Rexrode KM. Intakes of magnesium, potassium, and calcium and the risk of stroke among men. Int J Stroke. 2015 Oct;10(7):1093-1100. doi:10.1111/ijs.12516
- Dawson-Hughes B, Harris SS, Palermo NJ, et al. Potassium Bicarbonate Supplementation Lowers Bone Turnover and Calcium Excretion in Older Men and Women: A Randomized Dose-Finding Trial. J Bone Miner Res. 2015;30:2103-2111. doi:10.1002/jbmr.2554
- Seth A, Mossavar-Rahmani Y, Kamensky V, et al. Potassium intake and risk of stroke in women with hypertension and nonhypertension in the Women's Health Initiative. Stroke. 2014;45:2874-2880. doi:10.1161/STROKEAHA.114.006046
Jim Thomas has been a freelance writer since 1978. He wrote a book about professional golfers and has written magazine articles about sports, politics, legal issues, travel and business for national and Northwest publications. He received a Juris Doctor from Duke Law School and a Bachelor of Science in political science from Whitman College.