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    Old 03-29-2008, 05:13 PM   #1
    Vanessa74
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    Potassium

    <ref: http://www.healthboards.com/boards/showthread.php?t=591210>

    Hi Beerzoids,

    Are you saying that too much potassium can cause breathing problems? What is recommended daily amount of potassium.

    I think I might eat too much potassium... Not sure - lots of bananas, prunes, leafy greens, nuts, etc. I just naturally really LOVE these types of foods.

    THANKS!!! Glad to hear you are doing well and that the B/P is coming down!!

    I am still having my breathing problems so I am still searching ofr answers. Though I did just get over a severe case of bronchitis so I may be having some left over coughing, etc from that.

    THANKS AGAIN!

    Nessa

    Last edited by mod-anon; 03-30-2008 at 10:04 PM. Reason: starting a new thread with this post.

     
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    Old 03-29-2008, 06:37 PM   #2
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    Re: Tekturna works for me

    Beerzoids,

    like Vanessa, I would like to know more about any possible connection between potassium levels and breathing problems. When reading your post, your comment really got my attention and I was going to ask you about it. Vanessa beat me to it. Would you mind elaborating on that statement?

    Many thanks,
    flowergirl

     
    Old 03-29-2008, 09:11 PM   #3
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    Re: Tekturna works for me

    Oh beerzoids, , you are too good! And funny, . Don't count on a Xmas card from me. My intentions are the sincerest, but I have purchased cards for the last 5-6 years and have not sent out a one. Will have to open a Xmas Card Specialty Shop with my current supply, .

    I can't imagine what it must be like dealing with heart failure and your other health conditions. Life can be challengning enough without health issues...on the other hand, our health issues can put our priorities in the proper order and perhaps, ironically, improve our lives sometimes.

    Like Vanessa and Flowergirl, I too, would like to pick your brain regarding potassium and breathing issues...please do share your insights and experiences along these lines. Do you know why higher levels of K cause breathing problems for you? Is there a correlation between that and your asthma? Is there a correlation between the higher potassium levels and your heart? So many things are connected. What are your thoughts? Experiences? Best guesses?

    Quote:
    ....Lately, one of my most important tools, that I had used for many years to help me to improve my heart disease, changed and instead of helping me, was causing breathing problems, significant stress on my heart, and other nasty symptoms. I went through some very difficult days. I've finally come up with a work-around. But...... it has woken me up to the fact that, what has helped me before, sometimes for years, might not be there for me tomorrow. That is the main reason why I started taking Coreg.
    I'm sorry you've been experiencing difficulties and I wish I could have helped you some way during this time. You're sharp to recognize it may take something "different" than something that has worked before. I just today caught some of your prevous posts on the research you've done....your experience could help so many people, beerzoids. I hope they listen.

    Quote:
    ...If Tekturna is as good as shown in the clinical trials, it is a significant improvement for the treatment of blood pressure and heart failure and atrial fibrillation and other immune system problems.
    I saw the info about tekturna in a major clinic's newsletter when tekturna was first approved for the general public. The info I read at that time looked very promising and I would be interested in following the literature.

    Quote:
    ...But, as you say, how much do we trust new medications? I'd rather wait until the dust settles.
    I don't know, but given my experience with medications I'm a skeptic of all.

    Quote:
    ... The average is now hovering around 126/72, which is a few points higher than I had been averaging, but more than acceptable.
    Oh, that is a relief! It's still "early" so perhaps it will drop some more,l but yes, those are very good numbers.

    Quote:
    ...I LOVE my diet. LOVE IT. It's like eating and snacking all of the time. The small meal, frequent feeding, low calorie diet is great if one has the time to do it.
    beerzoids, I think this was the way we really were designed to eat, . I don't think our ancestors sat down in their caves and "dined" three meals a day! It makes more sense to eat as you do, but you may have more flexibility to do so because you are "retired"....I don't consider working on a roof being "retired" but I'm giving you one here, .

    Quote:
    ...What do you mean, implying that I am not a youngster!? Isn't it true that we are all youngsters inside? I feel that I have never truly grown up, and I will avoid growing up as long as I can!
    I haven't a clue as to how old you are...I only know that you make me laugh and think, and that you sound like you have the energy, heart, and soul of someone who is the perfect age!

    And I don't think anyone should have to go up on a roof...too dangerous, .

    Take care, my friend!

    Bethsheba

    Last edited by bethsheba; 03-29-2008 at 09:14 PM.

     
    Old 03-30-2008, 09:17 AM   #4
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    Re: Tekturna works for me

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Vanessa74 View Post
    Hi Beerzoids,

    Are you saying that too much potassium can cause breathing problems? What is recommended daily amount of potassium.

    I think I might eat too much potassium... Not sure - lots of bananas, prunes, leafy greens, nuts, etc. I just naturally really LOVE these types of foods.
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by flowergirl2day View Post
    Beerzoids,

    like Vanessa, I would like to know more about any possible connection between potassium levels and breathing problems. When reading your post, your comment really got my attention and I was going to ask you about it. Vanessa beat me to it. Would you mind elaborating on that statement?

    Many thanks,
    flowergirl
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by bethsheba View Post
    Like Vanessa and Flowergirl, I too, would like to pick your brain regarding potassium and breathing issues...please do share your insights and experiences along these lines. Do you know why higher levels of K cause breathing problems for you? Is there a correlation between that and your asthma? Is there a correlation between the higher potassium levels and your heart? So many things are connected. What are your thoughts? Experiences? Best guesses?
    The MDR for potassium hasn't really been established. It's estimated to be between 2000 and 4000 mg. I'm at around 3400mg currently.

    Figuring out breathing problems is a full time job for me, because I have heart failure, asthma and also immune system problems.

    My breathing problems can be caused by an allergen, which triggers my asthma; a strain on my weak heart from hormonal "triggers"; the lifting of weights or some other physical activity; too many calories (especially at night); taking my medications too close together or at the wrong time of day, eating a food or drink that conflicts with my medications (like grapefruit); or consuming too much potassium (especially at night).

    Heart meds, like ACE inhibitors and ARBS cause the body to retain potassium. One must ask themselves, well...... if so, what happens to my body if I eat too many foods with potassium and it overloads my system with potassium? In my case, it causes breathing problems.

    Well then, how did I find this out? I have no medical training. So... how do I know that the breathing problems came from eating too much potassium enriched foods?

    I am so glad that you asked!

    I was having breathing problems and I couldn't figure out why. I took nitro under my tongue. Did nothing. I took extra Asthma meds. Did nothing. I took ventolin for Asthma. Did nothing. I did deep, slow breathing. Did nothing.

    Coincidentally, the next day at my cardiologist, he did a complete blood test, which he does frequently, and it showed that my potassium level was high.

    I said, "Aha! I have just increased the amount of spinach and tomatoes in my diet, by quite a bit. Could that be it!?"

    I found out that both spinach and tomatoes have a lot, A LOT of potassium. I cut down on the spinach and tomatoes and viola, no more of that type of breathing problem!

    I reduced my Ace Inhibitor, so that I could stuff face with more salad, but have since rescinded my decision, and, instead reduced my salad size. Ace Inhibitors are supposed to be very good for Heart Failure.

    I intend to respond to any unanswered comments, questions later, as I've got to run.

    Take care Vanessa flowergirl bethsheba!
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    Last edited by Machaon; 03-30-2008 at 09:52 AM.

     
    Old 03-30-2008, 01:09 PM   #5
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    Re: Tekturna works for me

    Thank you - that makes a lot of sense.

    What type of breathing problems were you having - associated to the potassium (i.e. wheezing, shortness of breath, or laborerd breathing, etc.?

    I have been diligent in monitor my breathing and I have noticed a connection between food/stomach upset and the onset of breathing issues. It is complex and hard to figure out at times - but one thing I know for SURE - too much caffeine or even a TINY BIT of chocolate - and BAM chest tightness and shortness of breath - it is so strange.

    I know that there are other things as well causing me breathing problems - trying to figure it out is exhausting - but worth it! If my pulse jumps and goes super fast (which it has been doing A LOT since having to take Prednisone for 7 days) - I immediately have trouble breathing....

    Thanks again so much for your kind and INFORMATIVE response. I think I will lower my potassium intake a bit and see what happens.

    God Bless,

    Vanessa

     
    Old 03-30-2008, 02:38 PM   #6
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    Re: Tekturna works for me

    We're kind of off topic here...we may need to start a new thread, .

    beerzoids,

    Thank you! You've given us lots of things to think about...must reflect a bit first.

    Vanessa, prednisone, which is a steroid, can deplete potassium in the body so do be careful.

    Gotta go!

    Bethsheba

    Last edited by bethsheba; 03-31-2008 at 12:01 PM. Reason: second thoughts

     
    Old 03-30-2008, 08:02 PM   #7
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    Re: Tekturna works for me

    Thank you, Beerzoids!

    Tracking one's reactions over time given all the variables gets quite tricky, doesn't it? Because of your complex health status, staying on top of everything requires diligence, precision, excellent record keeping skills and an open mind. I don't know how you do it. This potassium connection to breathing problems is very interesting and warrants further investigation.

    P.S. Now that we can discuss potassium, I'd like to add that if I find any information about this anywhere, I'll post it. I think I might be having potassium issues right now so have to look into it anyway.

    flowergirl

    Last edited by flowergirl2day; 03-30-2008 at 10:08 PM.

     
    Old 03-31-2008, 07:50 PM   #8
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    Re: Potassium

    Hi,

    I am wondering if eating fruits & veggies can indeed make a potassium imbalance worse. They are a big part of my diet. I think they could be making me sick if my potassium levels are off. I eat more veggies than fruit for fear of my glucose levels getting too high. I have noticed more problems with chest pain. The frequency has changed also. I don't know at which point to go to ER and was going to that last night. I crushed some aspirin instead. I told hubby we might have to go tonight. Reading Beth's comments about the diet made me realize that perhaps I should NOT be eating any veggies or fruits. Geez. What to do?

    FG

     
    Old 04-01-2008, 07:19 AM   #9
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    Re: Potassium

    I feel great this morning. My blood pressure is elevated (150s/90s). I've come up with a plan. Since I eat veggies on my breaks, with lunch and sometimes also for dinner (chef's salad a couple of nights ago), I'll try not to eat any at all today. We had no veggies for dinner last night and I felt better. I still have the tingling, now also in my left arm, as before. I am pretty sure the nerve in my elbow is fine and not causing the tingling. I won't get to see the doctor untill the end of the week, which is also when I'll have the labwork done. When I pack my lunch in a little while, I won't include any fruits or veggies and take nuts instead to snack on. I believe that Beerzoids is correct in saying that our diet plays a major role in our health. There has to be a balance.

    flowergirl

     
    Old 04-02-2008, 11:48 AM   #10
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    Re: Potassium

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by flowergirl2day View Post
    Hi,

    I am wondering if eating fruits & veggies can indeed make a potassium imbalance worse. They are a big part of my diet.
    Fruits and veggies are essential to a healthy diet. They are a big part of my diet, also. I just try and limit those, like tomatoes, that have high levels of potassium, and that is only because I am on a potassium sparing medication.

    Perhaps you are reacting to the pesticide residues on the fruits and veggies? Have you ever considered trying organics?
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    Old 04-02-2008, 11:54 AM   #11
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    Re: Potassium

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by flowergirl2day View Post
    ... When I pack my lunch in a little while, I won't include any fruits or veggies and take nuts instead to snack on. ...

    flowergirl
    Whoa! Nuts usually contain a lot of potassium. Potassium is in a lot of foods.

    Currently my diet is about 3419 mgs of potassium, and I do OK. I don't know what is my maximum mgs of potassium before I suffer from breathing problems, but as long as I keep it down near 3400 mgs, I am OK.
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    Last edited by Machaon; 04-02-2008 at 11:56 AM.

     
    Old 04-02-2008, 05:19 PM   #12
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    Re: Potassium

    Hi Beerzoids,

    Quote:
    Perhaps you are reacting to the pesticide residues on the fruits and veggies? Have you ever considered trying organics?
    I buy organic fruit and veggies grown either in Canada or USA. I'll bet pesticides are present in a number of things we consume though. They have never caused me the kind of problems I've been having before.

    I didn't eat any veggies (or nuts) yesterday and didn't get any pain. It seems to have worked. I took melba toast for snacking, not nuts (because of the calories). I met my husband for lunch today and ordered grilled chicken with caesar salad. Ate the chicken but was afraid to eat the salad. Reducing the amount of veggies is only a temporary measure, until I know what my labs are and what the doctor wants me to do (or not do).
    I think I eat too many veggies. I sure missed them yesterday at lunchtime - it felt so strange not having any on my plate! I threw half of my sandwich out. Will go back to eating veggies as soon as I can. I am starting to feel discouraged about this whole thing. I read an article about the food people consume in the Mediteranean. Everything sounded good and wholesome and harmless. Maybe I should not be so strict with myself.

    Thank you for your comments.
    flowergirl

     
    Old 04-02-2008, 08:21 PM   #13
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    Re: Potassium

    Acid reflux can trigger asthma & other breathing problems as well as chest pain. Acid reflux can be painless so that it is hard to zero in on the cause.

    In my "Nurses PDR" there is a caution for those patients on potassium sparing meds. It says to limit very high potassium foods. It seems to me that the easier way to do this is to list one's favorite & freguently consumed potassium rich foods. Then eat the ones with the most nutrients especially fiber, vitamins, & anything else that is important to you. I made a potassium food chart to make sure I get enough because I'm on HCTZ. Fam

     
    Old 04-02-2008, 08:25 PM   #14
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    Re: Potassium

    Vanessa,

    Are you you don't have acid reflux? Getting symptoms after eating chocolate or caffeine are sure tip off's that you may have acid reflux. If you take Norvasc, be prepared for super heartburn/acid reflux as it is known for that symptom. I thought I was having a heart attack. Luckily, it is a drug that can be dropped fast without withdrawal according to my pharmacist which is what I did. Fam

     
    Old 04-02-2008, 09:32 PM   #15
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    Re: Potassium

    Fam,

    Quote:
    It says to limit very high potassium foods. It seems to me that the easier way to do this is to list one's favorite & freguently consumed potassium rich foods. Then eat the ones with the most nutrients especially fiber, vitamins, & anything else that is important to you. I made a potassium food chart to make sure I get enough because I'm on HCTZ
    you're right, that is a perfect and an easy solution. I could just print out a potassium-content chart for fruits and vegetables (I remember seeing one somewhere when researching diets) and work my way backwards, using the ones on lower end of the chart of potassium-rich foods. I will do that.
    I have to hit the books now every chance I get and study for re-certification. I have not been given enough time (only two weeks! -3 books) so will stress a lot over that. Guess I'll be burning some midnight oil.... I wish I didn't have to worry about this as well. I can forget about reading or researching anything else for now.

    Thank you very much for your advice and a reminder that people like myself with potassium issues on potassium-sparing meds have to watch their dietary potassium intake. Unfortunately, I haven't been doing it at all.

    flowergirl

     
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