Should I take a potassium supplement?

Dr. Michael Roizen, MD
Internal Medicine
Under no circumstances should you take potassium supplements, unless advised to do so by your doctor, as overdosing can be a problem. Although most of us do not consume the optimal amount of potassium, actual potassium deficiencies are truly rare, except in people with very specific medical conditions. Because certain medications may deplete potassium supplies, supplements may be advised, but they should be taken only under strict medical supervision. Remember, too, that increasing potassium intake can actually cause aging in people who have kidney disease or are taking certain medications, so talk to your doctor before increasing your potassium intake.
Kate Geagan
Nutrition & Dietetics
Focus on food, not supplements. Unless you are under the specific advice of your health-care professional, think "food first" rather than popping a potassium supplement, as supplements don't seem to deliver the same health benefits, and can carry a greater risk of consuming unsafe levels.

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