Potassium helps ensure that all of your muscles (including your heart) work the way they should. The potassium in your blood helps control your blood pressure. When you have too much potassium, your blood pressure can rise too high; too little potassium, and it can drop dangerously low, according to WebMD.
Because your blood affects so many different parts of your body, low potassium levels can create a bevy of symptoms.
1. Heart palpitations
Your heart is the most important muscle in your body. Because potassium is vital to ensuring your muscles operate properly, if your levels are too low, your heart may beat faster or slower to compensate. In the most severe cases, low potassium can lead to heart failure, according to Harvard Medical School.
Low potassium makes it difficult for your muscles to work properly. You may feel tired or weak because your muscles don’t have enough energy to function, according to LiveStrong.
3. Arm and leg cramps
The potassium levels in your body are delicate. If you don’t have enough potassium in your bloodstream, your muscles won’t work properly, which can lead to cramping and twitching.
4. Abdominal cramps and constipation
You may experience abdominal cramps because of malfunctioning of the intestines and stomach if your potassium levels are low. If your potassium drops low enough, it can stop your intestinal activity completely.
5. Extreme thirst
When your potassium levels drop, your body tries to shed excess fluids to get your body back in balance. This also makes you very thirsty. Over time, you can become dehydrated and weak.
If your kidneys don’t get enough potassium, they may not be able to operate properly. This results in frequent urination, which can lower your blood pressure. If your blood pressure drops too low, you may pass out.
Nausea is common when the body is trying to compensate for low potassium. Your kidneys and muscles may stop operating properly, resulting in the loss of fluids and vital nutrients, which can give you an upset stomach. Low potassium can also cause weakness or dizziness, which can contribute to a feeling of nausea.