Grandma's Dangers of Sodium &
Potassium Imbalance Guide

Sodium is necessary for maintaining proper water balance and blood pH. It is also needed for stomach, nerve, and muscle function.

Although sodium deficiency is rare, most people have adequate (if not excessive) levels of this mineral in their bodies, it can occur. This condition is most likely to affect people who take diuretics for high blood pressure, especially if they simultaneously adhere to low-sodium diets.

Some experts estimate that 20 percent of elderly people who take diuretics may be deficient in sodium.

Symptoms of deficiency can include:

  • abdominal cramps
  • anorexia
  • confusion
  • dehydration
  • depression
  • dizziness
  • fatigue
  • flatulence
  • hallucinations
  • headaches
  • heart palpitations
  • muscular weakness
  • nausea and vomiting
  • poor coordination
  • recurrent infections
  • seizures
  • weight loss

Excessive intake can result in:

  • edema
  • high blood pressure
  • potassium deficiency
  • liver and kidney disease

photo of salt and pepper shakers on the table a source of sodium photo of woman sitting on the beach suffering with edema an effect of too much sodium a photo of a box of salt and a banana hooked to the spout to show balance of sodium and potassium is important

Virtually all Foods Contain some Sodium

A proper balance of potassium and sodium is necessary for good health. Since most people consume too much sodium, they typically need more potassium as well.

An imbalance of sodium and potassium can lead to heart disease.


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