Dangers of high potassium levels
One of the dangers of high potassium levels is a condition known as hyperkalemia, or hyperpotassemia. This can be a serious and possibly life threatening condition if not treated promptly. The dangers of high potassium levels can be characterized by weakness, irregular heartbeat, weak & slow pulse rate, paralysis, and difficulty breathing. A professional assessment of the condition is important, and the doctor will recommend an appropriate treatment plan such as reducing the body's total potassium levels and then treating the cause of the hyperkalemia.
Potassium is required for growing, transmitting nerve impulses, building muscles, maintaining heart activity, allowing enzyme reactions, and regulating blood pressure levels. More specifically, it regulates the proper acid-base and water balance in the blood and tissues. Potassium is also used in protein synthesis from amino acids and metabolizing carbohydrates. However, if one is not too careful and the body is unable to rid itself of excess potassium, the dangers of high potassium levels can exist as described before.
Normally, our kidneys would filter and excrete any excess potassium in urine to maintain proper potassium levels. However, the dangers of high potassium levels can exist if this process is not functioning properly. For example, the kidneys can fail to work properly, or one can consume too much potassium such as by consuming potassium salt substitutes. Furthermore, specific types of medication like diuretics can retain potassium in the body and lead to hyperkalemia.
Dangers of high potassium levels can be more prevalent if high-potassium foods such as fruits (specifically, avocados, apricots, bananas, dates, nectarines, oranges, raisins), vegetables (specifically artichokes, parsnips, spinach, tomatoes, yams), whole grains, molasses, clams, cod, halibut, yogurt, and nuts are consumed. Other causes include consuming too many potassium supplements.