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Can hypokalemia be prevented?

Hypokalemia (low blood levels of potassium) cannot always be prevented, but there are ways to lower your risk. The overuse of laxatives can result in diarrhea and puts an individual at risk for excessive potassium loss. Individuals with eating disorders such as bulimia should receive treatment to avoid hypokalemia as well as other serious medical problems. The excessive use of licorice and licorice-containing products has been linked to low blood levels of potassium as have some antibiotics and diuretics. Rarely, an elderly individual's diet is so poor that they have hypokalemia. If you have had recurring vomiting or diarrhea, contact the doctor to try to avoid the excessive loss of body fluids that contain potassium.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.