For those monitoring/supplementing their potassium levels

I wanted to get my levels between 4.5 – 5.0, as recommended for AF sufferers.

About a month ago, not having had a blood test, I wasn't aware of what my levels were, but checking my diet, I guessed I was well short of 4.5, so started supplementing with 600mg daily. Had a blood test this week, and it was 4.6. I’m guessing before I supplemented with 600mg, I was below 4.5. So that’s a good thing, and my heart seems calmer now, with less ectopics.

Now, as far as the NHS is concerned, 4.6 is just fine, so I guess I won’t be offered any more free blood tests, based on potassium levels.

There was a DIY blood tester I found on the web, for about £200 (but I've lost the bookmark - can someone help me find it?), which I can’t afford right now, so I’m fishing for feedback to see how much more potassium I might need, to bring me up to a mid-way 4.75.

Just wondered what peeps experience was, on how much the number rises, per 99mg of potassium supplementation?

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  • Interesting post. My potassium level was said to be low when I went into hospital while on holiday in the south west. They said it could have triggered the AF episode. I mentioned it to my Cardiologist at home when I next saw him and he just smiled and said my potassium would be have low because the AF episode would have caused it. So I am confused which way it is/was.

    I don't have my potassium monitored unless it is checked as part of my 6 monthly blood tests for my general meds review. I would not have a clue what it should be or that I could/should have it monitored ongoing. I know bananas are a good source but that is as far as it goes.


  • Yep, bananas are a good source, Dee, about 422mg per banana. However, bananas also contain Tyramine, and I’m working towards a tyramine free diet, because like this guy, I’m aiming/hoping to dispense with my heart arithma meds (sotalol):

    You should be able to get the relevant potassium level from your blood tests, if you ask. I think the NHS guidelines are 3.5 to 5.3 for your blood serum levels, but this AF site recommends 4.5 – 5.0: ...and I’ve seen those narrower guidelines recommended elsewhere.

    To what extent those numbers can deviate, on a daily basis, I have no idea. That’s why I want to get the DIY blood test kit.

    What is also important is your sodium (salt) / potassium ratio. Most people with AF should be looking at reducing sodium intake, particularly if they have blood pressure higher than the guidelines. I think I’m pretty close on my salt level aim of 3.75g per day.

  • Thanks Onezone.

  • Just read that, my mind is boggling at the thought of 'rhododendron honey poisoning'! I am sure that some foods/drinks do affect AF, it's working out which ones affect you personally that is the challenge...

  • Surprised they are working to to 4.5 to 5 for INR, I am permanent AF after two failed ablations and my target INR is 2.5 I'm seeing doc tomorrow and cardiology on monday so will certainly be raising it.

  • I think it is potassium levels that are 4.5 - 5 not INR as that would be a bit high


  • I would also reiterate that too much potassium is also bad for your heart. It is a fine line. An Afib attack will result in low potassium especially if you have a bout when you are forever going to the loo.


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