Anonymous asked in HealthAlternative Medicine · 10 years ago

Why do potassium supplements only contain two percent of the daily required value?

Every potassium supplement I have come across says that it only contains 2% of the daily required value. What does this mean? Obviously if its only two percent it can't be a "supplement" unless you take about 50 pills. Is it really only 2%?

4 Answers

  • Tink
    Lv 7
    10 years ago
    Favorite Answer

    The reason also happens to be one of the more unusual trivia facts about the FDA, and it happens to intertwine with the history of execution in the United States.....

    One of the very first laws the newly formed F.D.A made was to place a limit on the amount of potassium (k+) in a supplement. Why 99 mgs? It was totally arbitrary - the man who suggested the law was standing in front of congress (I can't recall his name) he was asked on the spot what the limit should be - he picked 100 as 'a nice round' number - he also picked a very low number for a very good reason - they really didn't know very much at all about how potassium worked in the body at the time...but they did know that it contained the power to save and to take life. It was just starting to be used for lethal injection as 'the humane alternative' to the electric chair - so he figured a really low limit was a good idea. There was every intention of going back and changing it after they knew more about how potassium functioned in the body, but somehow they just never got around to it.

    So yes, it really is 2%

    You know - I sold vitamins for years, you would be amazed how infrequently I was asked that question - you get a star just for being observant ;)

  • Susan
    Lv 4
    4 years ago

    One banana has 422 mg of potassium. Here are a list of foods with a higher amount per serving: Papayas -- 1 papaya -- 781 mg Lima Beans -- 1 cup -- 955 mg Plantains -- 1 medium -- 893 mg Jerusalem Artichokes --1 cup -- 644 mg Oat Bran -- 1 cup -- 532 mg Tomatoes -- 1 cup -- 528 mg Cucumber -- 1 large -- 442 mg Cantaloupe -- 1 cup -- 427 mg

  • 10 years ago

    You'll find "RDA" ratings discrepancies from 2000 to 3500 mg a day. Most nutritional experts consider RDA's to be meaningless because there is no research to substantiate them and they don't take into consideration:

    Disease states (including malabsorption states, digestive problems, and chronic infections).

    Environmental pollutants.

    Genetic metabolic defects.

    Increased requirements due to the use of both prescription and non-prescription medications.

  • Anonymous
    6 years ago

    difficult matter. do a search at yahoo. this could help!

Still have questions? Get your answers by asking now.