For this article, the word “sodium” refers to sodium chloride, and the term “potassium” refers to potassium chloride. I must distinguish between one salt and the other salt, and so I can’t use the word salt to refer to just sodium chloride, although that is how it’s often used.
I have recently learned that I was taking too little potassium, and eating too much sodium, which causes potassium losses, fat gain, insulin resistance, low energy problems, increased hunger and food intake, low copper, and many other problems.
I had the right direction. I had stopped supplementing sodium, even though the iodine doctors recommend sodium in the form of sea salt. But there was still too much sodium in my diet.
And I had been supplementing with potassium chloride instead, but it turns out, 1/8th of a teaspoon at 377 mg was not enough, especially when the diet contains sodium that causes potassium excretion.
There is a sodium/potassium pump on the cell membrane that pumps potassium in and sodium out. Water follows minerals. Potassium goes into the cells, and hydrates the cells. Sodium dehydrates the cells, and increases water outside the cells, causing edema and swelling.
Potassium has a long list of similar benefits as copper, and helps the body absorb copper.
Also, boron contains plenty of sodium, so we might have an even greater need to increase potassium, and avoid sodium.
I was taking from 1/8th to 2/8ths teaspoons of potassium chloride. (from 377 mg to 750 mg)
I’m now taking from 6/8ths to 8/8ths teaspoons of potassium chloride. (up to 3000 mg)
I recently did a FB live on the topic of sodium vs. potassium:
The following, the next section of this article, are my own notes from my own show!
The big questions: Is Potassium much better than sodium, and do we even need sodium at all?
Article for discussion:
Potassium Deficiency Scam … Kills and Maimms Millions
“The Yanomami… people receive virtually no sodium [table salt] at all, but every adult consumes around 8,500 milligrams of potassium every day. They are incredibly fit and have no history whatever of arthritis, osteoporosis, hypertension [high blood pressure], angina or stroke.”
High Potassium may prevent:
hypertension [high blood pressure]
Further evidence from https://www.health.harvard.edu/heart-health/sodiumpotassium-ratio-important-for-health
“Our Paleolithic hunter-gatherer ancestors took in about 11,000 milligrams (mg) of potassium a day from fruits, vegetables, leaves, flowers, roots, and other plant sources, and well under 700 mg of sodium. That’s a sodium-to-potassium ratio of 1 to 16. Today, we get more sodium (3,400 mg) than potassium (2,500 mg), for a ratio of 1.36 to 1.”
The Yanomami Indians in the INTERSALT Study: (2003)
“Adults of industrialized populations have an increase in weight with age 9,10. The Yanomami Indians did not increase their weight with age.”
It’s not just The Yanomami Indians!
“Several studies with isolated populations with low salt intake in different parts of the world have shown no increase in blood pressure with age 11-24. A few studies have reported a decrease in blood pressure with age 7,20. These populations are usually characterized by a Na+ poor and K+ rich diet.”
It could be that all of the “supposed benefits” of sodium can really be obtained from potassium chloride or other salts such as copper sulfate, and potassium iodide.
(Potassium iodide is not a good source of potassium. Potassium iodide is about 76.4% iodide by weight. This means that one drop of SSKI includes 51 mg of iodine, and only 13 mg potassium.)
The FDA recommends 4700 mg of potassium. Food sources are only about 2000. FDA also says no potassium supplements over 99 mg. So what’s the solution? 27 pills that can cause ulcers? The pills are, indeed dangerous, so dissolve potassium into water or juice or coffee.
1/8th teaspoon of Potassium Chloride has 377 mg of potassium.
Mixed in water it tastes bad. In coffee and water it’s ok.
The iodine doctors recommended sea salt for the chloride, to help detox bromine. And potassium chloride and magnesium chlorides were potential alternatives, like footnotes.
If pure sodium chloride is bad, why would sea salt be so much better, since the majority of it is “bad”?
We were supplementing with sodium about 1.5 years ago. But I was bloated. And eating out is already salted with sodium.
The point of supplementation is to add what you are missing, not what your food has in abundance.
Did the iodine doctors make the mistake or was it me?
Lately, we are eating less sodium, and trying to take more potassium.
We went on a 45 min walk, and I was hyperventilated. I blamed lifting. Then I realized I ate excess sodium from cheese crackers.
But excess sodium leads to being out of breath!
So, no high sodium foods.
Drink more water.
Take potassium… all to deplete the sodium.
Potassium is good for relieving cramps.
The arguments that folate is a vitamin because of its results, are not valid, because you can do those things with copper.
The argument for sodium, is that it helps the “body” retain water. But what if potassium and other minerals (copper sulfate) do that better? Then the argument for sodium vanishes.
And, how could you remove all sodium from a normal diet anyway? We can’t.
Most low sodium depletion problems are from diuretics and drug, not low sodium diets.
Potassium helps us absorb copper. And zinc helps us retain potassium.
Examples from people completely eliminating sodium and going high on potassium? Yes! One good testimonial immediately!
The sodium-potassium pump. Sodium gets pumped out of the cell and the potassium in.
Two explanations. 1. Creates the electrical potential for nerve impulses, and this is why we need both.
Alternative explanation. If sodium is going out, and potassium going in, this could mean cells don’t like sodium, and do like potassium.
Sodium does not have to fill the role of the alternative electrolyte, because there are others.
The problem of sodium, is looking fatter.
Bodybuilders take diuretics to eliminate minerals, especially sodium, but the drugs really rid them of all minerals.
NuSalt is potassium chloride.
Cream of Tarter is bad, comes from the scraping of the barrels of making wine, and could contain fluoride which they spray on grapes.
You can also find 99.9% pure potassium chloride from a chemical supplier.
5 ways to rid sodium:
Drink lots of distilled water
Sweat in a workout
Sweat in a sauna
Take potassium chloride
Eat leafy Greens and fruits containing potassium
Low magnesium causes potassium losses or potassium wasting.
Copper fixes the low magnesium problem, and so does boron.
Everyone is suffering from magnesium and potassium wasting problems.
The potassium article makes a similar argument that we make. When the medical establishment established guidelines for minerals, they took measurements from people who were “average” or “normal” who were already deficient in potassium and sodium toxic! (And deficient in copper and iodine!)
Optimal and average are not the same thing!!!!
Because I go to the gym, if I’m above average in muscle, the medical establishment would want to cut away extra muscle, based on that flawed argument, of trying to get into “average range”!
The concept to get to average ranges is absurd.
I want above-average intelligence, muscles, cardio. I want optimal, not average.
Perhaps they use potassium chloride as a lethal injection specifically to scare people away from it. There are many toxins they could use.
The upper limit level is 15,000 mg potassium.
Potassium is a major mineral in the body.
The average person has 140 grams of potassium in the body already.
The potential ideal, based on the article, is 250 grams!
And the FDA/NIH says we should also get 4700 mg of potassium daily, but they don’t say how to get it! No specifics!
We just increased our dose from 2/8ths teaspoons of potassium chloride per day to 6/8ths teaspoons. Plus another 2/8ths. Which adds about 3000 mg more potassium a day.
Excess sodium can cause allergies!
My bias was from the iodine doctors, who advocated sea salt (for the chloride) to help detox bromine. They also mentioned potassium chloride and magnesium chloride as afterthoughts.
Because I respected the work of the iodine doctors on iodine, I did not properly question, nor test, their advocacy of sodium chloride. This was my mistake.
—end notes from the show—
Further Research after the show:
Upon further reflection… water goes where minerals go. Potassium hangs out inside the cells. Sodium outside. If potassium is low, cells are dehydrated. If sodium is low, edema is reduced. We need potassium for hydration. Sodium dehydrates the cells!! This should be obvious and axiomatic first-year chemistry conclusions.
Another insight. The electrical impulse, the action potential. Potassium rushes out of the cell. A positive ion. Sodium is also a positive ion, and rushes in first. Other positive ions will work other than sodium, such as calcium and magnesium and even copper.
Potassium is used as fertilizer on soil.
“No substitutes exist for potassium as an essential plant nutrient and as an essential nutritional requirement for animals and humans.”
“The English name for the element potassium comes from the word potash which refers to an early method of extracting various potassium salts: placing in a pot the ash of burnt wood or tree leaves, adding water, heating, and evaporating the solution. When Humphry Davy first isolated the pure element using electrolysis in 1807, he named it potassium, which he derived from the word potash.”
“Potassium citrate is used to treat a kidney stone condition called renal tubular acidosis.”
“Potassium citrate is an effective way to treat/manage arrhythmia,[medical citation needed] if the patient is hypokalemic.”
See also: Potassium chloride (medical use)
“Potassium, in the form of potassium chloride is used as a medication to treat and prevent low blood potassium. Low blood potassium may occur due to vomiting, diarrhea, or certain medications. It is given by slow injection into a vein or by mouth.”
“Low blood potassium may occur due to vomiting, diarrhea, or certain medications.”
* This is important. As excess copper / Vitamin C / magnesium can lead to diarrhea, here is a restorative action to take for that problem!
“Potassium chloride is available as a generic medication. In 2020, it was the 33rd most commonly prescribed medication in the United States, with more than 17 million prescriptions.”
“Side effects can include gastrointestinal discomfort, including nausea and vomiting, diarrhea, and bleeding of the digestive tract.
“Overdoses cause hyperkalemia, which can lead to paresthesia, cardiac conduction blocks, fibrillation, arrhythmias, and sclerosis.
“Because of the risk of small-bowel lesions, the US FDA requires some potassium salts containing more than 99 mg (about 1.3 mEq) to be labeled with a warning, while recommending an adult daily intake of 4700 mg (about 63 mEq).
* This is very weird. No pills can contain more than 99 mg, yet we are told by that same FDA who limits the pills to get 4700 mg? What is the average intake from food? What is the differential? I’ve read average food intake is from 1500 to 2000. This leaves at least 2700 mg to be supplemented. From 27 pills? Something is amiss!!!!!!
The average person has 140 grams of potassium in the body. That means potassium is a major mineral. But this level is likely a low, unhealthy, deficiency level, because Americans consume too much sodium, which lowers potassium levels. Others say we should have at least 250 grams of potassium in the body, or 110 grams more than average, which is nearly double.
Zinc helps the body retain potassium, preventing potassium wasting. (Potassium bicarbonate lowers zinc, as bicarbonate uses up zinc.)
Sodium causes potassium wasting / excretion / elimination. The body can excrete up to 9 times more potassium from excess sodium intake.
Diarrhea & vomiting will lower potassium. (And excessive enemas.)
Blood levels of potassium are very stable, and are not valid tests for deficiency or excess, because most potassium is located within the cells.
“Although blood potassium levels can provide some indication of potassium status, they often correlate poorly with tissue potassium stores [3,9,10].”
We see this again and again and again. Blood tests are not accurate indicators of health/body status for minerals. Not for copper, not for zinc, not for Vitamin A, not for potassium, etc.
The AI (Adequate Intake) for potassium is 3400 mg for an adult male.
The DV (Daily Value) for potassium is 4700 mg for an adult male.
Most potassium is found in fruits and vegetables, especially potatoes.
Coffee, from coffee beans, is high in potassium, 1 cup = 116 mg, and coffee helps the body excrete sodium.
“…The FDA has ruled that some oral drug products that contain potassium chloride and provide more than 99 mg potassium are not safe because they have been associated with small-bowel lesions . …the FDA requires some potassium salts containing more than 99 mg potassium per tablet to be labeled with a warning about the reports of small-bowel lesions [20,21].”
But it’s really the drugs combined with potassium at 99 mg that is the problem. Further in the article by NIH it states the problem more clearly:
“The use of potassium salts in certain medications has been associated with small-bowel lesions, causing obstruction, hemorrhage, and perforation [20,74]. For this reason, the FDA requires some oral drugs providing more than 99 mg of potassium to be labeled with a warning.”
“According to data from the 2013–2014 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES), the average daily potassium intake from foods In adults aged 20 and over, the average daily potassium intake from foods is 3,016 mg for men and 2,320 mg for women.”
This is 1,700 mg short of the Daily Value of 4700 mg established.
This implies a recommended consumption of 17 of the 99 mg potassium pills, daily!!!!!
Only 12% of people consume any potassium supplement, which contains 87 mg on average.
Potassium Deficiency Symptoms:
Increased blood pressure, kidney stones, weak bones, calcium losses, sodium increases blood pressure more than normal, diabetes.
Mild potassium deficiency: constipation, fatigue, muscle weakness, malase, excessive urine loss, head swelling, glucose intolerance, paralysis, poor breathing, cardiac arrhythmias.
Causes of potassium deficiency: diarrhea, laxative abuse, IBS, excessive enemas. Vomiting, re-feeding syndrome, diuretic use, eating clay, heavy sweating, dialysis.
Here are a few articles on potassium, written by bodybuilders:
“Potassium is a critical electrolyte that balances fluid levels, nerve functions and nutrient transport systems in the body. Because potassium is lost when sweating, intense physical activity can result in immediate fatigue and muscle weakness. Athletes need high levels of daily potassium guarantee optimal levels of performance.”
“Muscle cramps are common when potassium levels are low. Muscle contraction and muscle relaxation require that potassium be present in the blood. No surprise, for the fastest reflex time your potassium levels must be optimal before training.”
“Potassium also ensures muscle tissue growth. Without potassium, the energy released during metabolism cannot be used by the muscles. Studies detail how potassium is essential to the synthesis of proteins that impact tissue regeneration and metabolic balance after exercise.”
Effects of potassium deficiency on growth and protein synthesis in skeletal muscle and the heart of rats
“It is concluded that in the intact organism protein synthesis and growth are very sensitive to dietary K deficiency and that this can only partly be accounted for by the reduction in cellular K content per se. The observations emphasize the need for adequate K supplies to ensure optimum utilization of food elements for protein synthesis and growth.”
“Potassium may help reduce muscle soreness that results from training. Any deficiency in potassium levels may result in decreased strength, and the early onset of exercise induced fatigue. Potassium helps to regulate water balance and is also needed for the synthesis of dietary proteins.”
Potassium reduces blood pressure, kidney stones, osteoporosis, and diabetes.
“Signs of [potassium] deficiency include a weak and disease susceptible immune system, susceptibility to overtraining, and an increased need for supplemental glutamine.
Populations that may benefit most from the consumption of potassium include: diabetics, the overweight or obese, and athletes.”
“Potassium is stored within muscle cells, where it works to enhance cell volumization – yes, it too will help pull water into your muscles. The effect is more pronounced if your potassium levels are low.”
“If you eat a typical bodybuilding diet and limit your fruit intake, the chances are good that potassium supplementation will work well for you.”
Potassium: Not Too Much, Not Too Little
That is a very good article discussing the manipulation of sodium and potassium for bodybuilders during contest preparation and also discusses the deadly dangers of diuretics, even potassium-sparing diuretics.
It’s important to take enough to matter!
“Reduction of the risk of cardiovascular diseases was also researched by a study on the group of people who daily received 4 g of potassium. The result was up to 49 % less risk of death from ischemic heart disease than the group who daily received only 1 g of potassium.”
“the protective effect of potassium on mineral bone density.  Concerning the importance of potassium for muscles, one study found that participants taking 5,266 mg of potassium daily maintained an average of 1,6 kg lean tissue mass higher than those with 50% lower income of potassium. ”
“As mentioned above, income of potassium reduces the amount of calcium in the urine and can prevent the formation of kidney stones.”
“If a person has a low potassium level, he cannot store sugar where it need to be – in the muscles and the liver. A body without potassium turns sugar into fat. After this process, the sugar level drops again and the body requires additional sugar. Although the body is eager to take more sugar, it actually lacks potassium. Indeed, low levels of this mineral reduce glucose tolerance associated with reduced insulin release, leading to significant changes in glucose metabolism.  ”
“During exercise a significant amount of potassium is excreted by sweating. “
“Supplementation of potassium affects the balance of electrolyte. That means that potassium expels sodium and water from cells using an electrolytic pump. As a result, sodium and water are excreted in the urine and the balance of internal environment is created. This benefit is especially praised by athletes because it solves the problem with inflated abdomen and water retention.”
heart rhythm disorders
The Peaking Axis, Part II: Effects Of Sodium And Potassium
This is a good article from a trainer who prefers his bodybuilders to avoid extreme intakes of potassium and avoid extreme avoidance of sodium. He sees that the body will rebound away from the extremes, which do not work, in other words, as sodium is avoided, aldosterone production is increased 4 fold, (which retains sodium) and sodium excretion drops by the 6th day to 1/20th of normal rates of excretion.
I am NOT endorsing his view that some moderate sodium is good. Sodium was not necessary for many indiginous people in population based studies. I like the article for the data, not his conclusion. And I do like his overall view, to avoid extremes.
I see that if sodium is that difficult to excrete, then sodium is acting like the toxin, such as other toxins like mercury and fluoride, which are very difficult to get the body to excrete. Things that are difficult to excrete end up building up to toxic levels.
I see that if potassium is so easy to excrete, and that we easily excrete more potassium the more potassium that we take, then potassium is acting like the detoxer, like copper.
Excess Sodium symptoms from Chat GPT:
Chat GPT: Excess intake of sodium chloride, commonly known as table salt, can lead to a condition called sodium overload or salt overload. The symptoms of excess sodium chloride intake can vary depending on the individual and the severity of the condition. Here are some common symptoms that may occur:
Chat GPT: Increased thirst: Excessive salt intake can lead to dehydration, triggering increased thirst as the body attempts to balance the concentration of sodium in the bloodstream.
Chat GPT: Edema: Consuming too much sodium chloride can cause fluid retention, resulting in swelling of the tissues, particularly in the hands, feet, ankles, and legs. This condition is known as edema.
Chat GPT: High blood pressure: Sodium plays a role in regulating blood pressure levels. Excessive sodium chloride intake can lead to increased blood volume and constricted blood vessels, raising blood pressure levels.
Chat GPT: Fluid imbalance: Too much sodium can disrupt the balance of fluids in the body, affecting the normal functioning of various organs and systems. This imbalance can result in symptoms such as excessive urination, dry mouth, and increased urine concentration.
Chat GPT: Kidney problems: Prolonged excess salt intake can put a strain on the kidneys, which are responsible for filtering out waste products and maintaining fluid balance. It can potentially lead to kidney dysfunction or aggravate existing kidney conditions.
Chat GPT: Headaches: Some individuals may experience headaches or migraines as a result of excess sodium chloride intake. The exact mechanisms behind this symptom are not fully understood, but it is thought to be related to increased blood pressure or altered blood vessel function.
Chat GPT: “Cardiovascular issues: Excessive sodium intake is associated with an increased risk of cardiovascular problems, such as heart disease, stroke, and heart failure. This is mainly due to the impact of high sodium levels on blood pressure and fluid balance.
Chat GPT: “It’s important to note that these symptoms typically occur when there is a chronic or prolonged excess intake of sodium chloride. Occasional high-salt meals or temporary deviations from a low-sodium diet are unlikely to cause significant symptoms. If you suspect that your sodium intake is excessive or you experience concerning symptoms, it’s advisable to consult a healthcare professional for an accurate diagnosis and appropriate guidance.
thirst, dry mouth, dehydration
high blood pressure, cardiovascular problems, heart disease, stroke, heart failure
What are the symptoms of a deficiency of potassium chloride?
Chat GPT: Potassium chloride is an essential mineral that plays a vital role in various bodily functions, including nerve transmission, muscle contractions, and maintaining fluid balance. A deficiency in potassium chloride, known as hypokalemia, can lead to a range of symptoms. Here are some common symptoms associated with a deficiency of potassium chloride:
Chat GPT: Muscle weakness: Potassium is essential for proper muscle function, and low levels can result in muscle weakness or fatigue. This can affect both skeletal muscles and smooth muscles, leading to generalized weakness or specific muscle groups becoming easily fatigued.
Chat GPT: Muscle cramps: Hypokalemia can cause muscle cramps, particularly in the legs. These cramps may be painful and occur spontaneously or during physical activity.
Chat GPT: Irregular heartbeat: Potassium is crucial for maintaining the electrical conductivity of the heart. A deficiency can disrupt the normal heart rhythm, leading to palpitations, skipped beats, or irregular heartbeats (arrhythmias). In severe cases, it may even cause life-threatening cardiac complications.
Chat GPT: Fatigue and weakness: Low potassium levels can result in overall fatigue and weakness, making routine tasks more challenging. This can be accompanied by a general feeling of lethargy and decreased energy levels.
Chat GPT: Constipation: Potassium plays a role in maintaining healthy digestive function. A deficiency can lead to slowed bowel movements and constipation.
Chat GPT: Numbness or tingling: In some cases, hypokalemia may cause sensations of numbness or tingling, usually in the extremities such as the hands, feet, or lips. This can be a result of potassium’s role in nerve function.
Chat GPT: Increased urination and excessive thirst: Potassium imbalances can affect kidney function and urine production. Hypokalemia may lead to increased urination (polyuria) and excessive thirst (polydipsia).
Chat GPT: Mood changes: Some individuals with potassium deficiency may experience mood changes, such as irritability, anxiety, or depression. However, the exact mechanisms behind these mood alterations are not well understood.
Chat GPT: It’s important to note that these symptoms can vary in severity depending on the degree of potassium deficiency. Severe hypokalemia can have more pronounced and potentially life-threatening symptoms, while mild deficiencies may exhibit milder manifestations. If you suspect you have a potassium deficiency or experience concerning symptoms, it is recommended to seek medical advice for proper diagnosis and treatment.
Summary of potassium deficiency from Chat GPT:
fatigue and weakness
numbness and tingling
Grand Total summary of Potassium Deficiency signs:
muscle cramps, and dehydration of the muscles
fatigue and weakness, malaise,
muscle soreness that results from training
decreased strength, and
the early onset of exercise-induced fatigue
poor protein synthesis
low muscle growth
susceptibility to overtraining,
numbness and tingling
thirst and dehydration
swelling, edema (hydration outside the cells)
high blood pressure,
heart rhythm disorders
excessive urine loss,
infections, diseases, weak immune system,
an increased need for supplemental glutamine