Potassium And Your Heart

     A recent report by Patricia Thomas in Medical world News highlights the importance of potassium in preventing heart problems.

     The Honolulu Heart Program reported last year (1990), that in a 16 year study of over 7,000 men, fatal thromboembolic strokes decreased as potassium levels increased.  While lower risks of strokes seem to be related to a higher than normal intake of calcium and protein, a British survey emanating from Cambridge University found that the lowest incidence of strokes was found among people that consumed the most fruit and vegetables.

     Kay-tee Khaw of Cambridge and Dr. Elizabeth Barret-Connor of the University of California checked over 800 men and women who had been divided into three groups; high, medium, and low potassium intake.

     After 12 years, none of the 24 stroke-associated deaths was in high potassium intake group.  The benefit of the high intake was surprising large, and the evident result demands more confirmatory investigation.  But as it is clear that fruits and vegetables are the riches sources of potassium, and their other nutrients may also have a beneficial effect, more work should be done to show the relationship between potassium and a healthy heart.

     Strangely, this is not new news!  It has been known for many years that an excess of potassium can alter the electrolytes in the tissues and interfere with the electrical potential of the cells, thereby causing interference with the nerve efficiency controlling the action of the heart.  However, it has also been known that the lowered levels of potassium and other base elements is the most common cause of sickness to modern man.

     Best and Taylor in their large text, The Physiological Basis of Medical Practice, have made it clear that a lowered alkaline reserve of the plasma predisposes to sickness.  The metabolism of the nutrients in the cells results in the transfer of acid end products into the blood and lymph.  These must be neutralized and eliminated or the body will cease to function.  The roll of potassium in this can be gauged by the fact that potassium is needed for the transfer of wastes in the kidneys.  This is so important that the potassium is recycled in the kidney.  This is why users of diuretic drugs must take additional potassium to replace that lost by the use of diuretic which interferes with the potassium recycling process.

     While we now know much of the chemistry of life and the elements necessary to promote health, the facts have been known for a very long time.  Around the turn of the century, one health commentator wrote, “Eat largely of fruits and vegetables.”  This means that more than half of what we consume should be fruits and vegetables.  While all fruits and vegetable are rich in potassium, the highest sources are bananas, leafy greens, and potato peelings.

     It is indeed interesting that the scientists now agree with what was revealed so many years ago by Inspiration!

Neville S, Brittain

      “Then said Daniel to Melzar, whom the prince of the eunuchs had set over Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah, 

      “Prove thy servants, I beseech thee, ten days; and let them give us pulse to eat, and water to drink. 

      Then let our countenances be looked upon before thee, and the countenance of the children that eat of the portion of the king's meat: and as thou seest, deal with thy servants. 

     So he consented to them in this matter, and proved them ten days. 

       And at the end of ten days their countenances appeared fairer and fatter in flesh than all the children which did eat the portion of the king's meat. 

      Thus Melzar took away the portion of their meat, and the wine that they should drink; and gave them pulse. 

     As for these four children, God gave them knowledge and skill in all learning and wisdom: and Daniel had understanding in all visions and dreams. 

       Now at the end of the days that the king had said he should bring them in, then the prince of the eunuchs brought them in before Nebuchadnezzar. 

      And the king communed with them; and among them all was found none like Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah: therefore stood they before the king. 

     And in all matters of wisdom and understanding, that the king inquired of them, he found them ten times better than all the magicians and astrologers that were in all his realm.” 

Daniel 1:11-20