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Sodium vs Potassium

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  • Sodium vs Potassium

    Okay so I heard today that the human body needs about 4 times as much sodium as potassium... So why is the RDA the same for both?
    What the heck's up?
    In all of the universe there is only one person with your exact charateristics. Just like there is only one person with everybody else's characteristics. Effectively, your uniqueness makes you pretty average.

  • #2
    The RDA for most vitamins and minerals is laughable.

    I could be wrong, but it's my understanding that it's based on what will keep you alive, not what will keep you healthy. Not that the government has a good grasp of what "healthy" is anyway.
    Durp.

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    • #3
      I think the human body is composed of twice as much potassium as sodium by mass. However the excretion of sodium and potassium are tightly regulated and do not occur at a one to one ratio. Also if I recall correctly, we have much better mechanisms for conserving sodium than potassium. I would have to double check that, but certainly required intake is impacted by retention rates.
      Using low lectin/nightshade free primal to control autoimmune arthritis. (And lost 50 lbs along the way )

      http://www.krispin.com/lectin.html

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      • #4
        Originally posted by Alex Good View Post
        Okay so I heard today that the human body needs about 4 times as much sodium as potassium... So why is the RDA the same for both?
        It isn't. The RDA for sodium is currently 1500 mg; that for potassium 4700 mg:

        Dietary Reference Intake - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

        How they arrived at those figures I don't know. Their reasoning is probably available in some documentation somewhere. ...

        Here we are. I tried the Institutes of Medicine website. I haven't time to look closely but looks to me like the current recommendations are based on this report:

        Dietary Reference Intakes: Water, Potassium, Sodium, Chloride, and Sulfate - Institute of Medicine

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        • #5
          Potassium, how can you get enough?

          The evolution-informed optimal dietary potassium intake of human beings greatly exceeds current and recommended intakes.
          Sebastian A, Frassetto LA, Sellmeyer DE, Morris RC Jr. The evolution-informed optimal dietary potassi... [Semin Nephrol. 2006] - PubMed - NCBI
          This article states we should be intake around 400 meq of K each day. That conversion is around 7 Grams! Na should be only 1 gram. There is ample evidence to show that elevation of K intake decreases BP.
          Does anybody else have a clue how to safely ingest such high doses of K? Is our plant food so nutrient deficient now that intake of such high levels would be difficult to accomplish?

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          • #6
            Originally posted by RitaRose View Post
            The RDA for most vitamins and minerals is laughable.

            I could be wrong, but it's my understanding that it's based on what will keep you alive, not what will keep you healthy. Not that the government has a good grasp of what "healthy" is anyway.
            I think the RDAs are the amount it takes to avoid the illnesses associated with deficiencies of the vitamin/mineral. It's kind of like recommending people drink enough water to avoid dizziness and hallucinations.
            Ye shall know them by their fruits.

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