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Is Potassium and Magnesium Good For Kidney Problems

2013-02-04 15:08

Kidneys have the functions of producing urine at the same time discharging excessive water, electrolytes and metabolic wastes out of the body so as to maintain the stability of potassium, magnesium, sodium and other electrolytes as well as acid-base balance.

In case of kidney problems, renal functions are affected and patients often have electrolyte disorders. Weather potassium and magnesium is good for kidney problem depends on the patients’ specific illness and physical condition. If patients have higher than normal potassium and magnesium in the blood, they should limit intake of potassium and magnesium. On the contrary, they need to supply potassium and magnesium.

Potassium and kidney problems

When patients progress into stage 4 kidney disease with GFR at 20-25ml/min or even lower, kidneys can not discharge excessive potassium in the blood and patients will develop hyperkalemia especially in case of too much potassium intake, acidosis, infection, physical traumas, gastrointestinal bleeding, etc. Serious hyperkalemia (blood potassium higher than 6.5mmol/l) has certain danger and needs immediate relief.

Sometimes patients can develop hypokalemia due to inadequate potassium intake, too much loss of potassium in the gastrointestinal tract and over use of diuretics, etc.

But hyperkalemia is more common in clinic, therefore kidney disease patients with high blood potassium should have strict restriction on high-potassium foods and have regular check of their blood potassium.

Common high-potassium foods: banana, orange, spinach, potatoes, kelp, tea, etc.

Common low-potassium foods: radish, celery, pumpkin, eggplant, cucumber, pear, apple, etc.

Magnesium and kidney problems

Magnesium can participate in energy storage and protein synthesis and it plays coenzyme effect in enzymatic reactions.

It is called hypomagnesemia when blood magnesium is lower than 1.5. It can be caused by diarrhea, too much discharge of magnesium in kidney disease, long term use of diuretics and hypothyroidism, etc. Many kidney diseases such as glomerulonephritis, hydronephrosis, pyelonephritis and nephrosclerosis can cause low blood magnesium. Patients can have some foods that are rich in magnesium. Magnesium usually exists in natural food such as fresh vegetables, tea, grains, nuts, meats, eggs and dairy products.

Kidney problem can also cause high blood magnesium. In such case, avoid or limit high-magnesium foods.

Of cause, kidney problem can cause disorders of other electrolytes such as sodium, phosphorus, calcium and many may co-exist, therefore it is necessary and important to have close monitoring of blood electrolytes and seek proper medicines and have proper diets.

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