The POTASSIUM Epidemic: Dr. Berg Explains Symptoms, Signs, Diet, Causes, and Treatment

Learn why you need such high amounts of potassium to support a healthy body.



0:00 Introduction: How much potassium do you need?
0:10 Potassium explained
0:48 Potassium RDAs
3:03 Potassium supplements
3:30 Potassium deficiency
3:50 Potassium deficiency symptoms
4:47 Potassium deficiency causes
8:15 My potassium challenge
8:38 Learn more about potassium!

Let’s talk about the importance of potassium and what can happen if you don’t get enough.

Your body requires a lot of potassium. The daily requirement for potassium is 4700 mg.

Potassium is important for the sodium-potassium pump. The sodium-potassium pump is like a battery for your cells.

Vegetables are the best source of potassium. One cup of leafy greens provides between 500 and 800 mg of potassium. If you consumed five to ten cups of vegetables daily, you would get plenty of potassium. In comparison, a banana only provides about 300 mg of potassium. Bananas also contain a lot of fructose.

Unfortunately, the average person is not getting enough potassium from their diet—and potassium supplements typically only give you up to 99 mg of potassium per tablet.

Potassium deficiency is often overlooked. It’s difficult to diagnose, and symptoms of a potassium deficiency are sometimes vague. Early symptoms often include difficulty breathing, fatigue, and heart palpitations.

A more severe deficiency in potassium can lead to the following:
• High blood pressure
• Increased risk of stroke
• Fluid retention or edema
• Bone loss
• Kidney stones

Causes of potassium deficiency that go beyond a lack of potassium in the diet can include:
• Penicillin
• Diuretics
• Steroids
• Chronic stress
• High insulin (high-carb diet)
• Refined or processed foods

Even the keto diet and prolonged fasting can lead to a potassium deficiency if not done correctly. You will lose potassium as you lose water weight on keto. Consuming enough potassium on keto and taking a potassium supplement while doing a prolonged fast is crucial.

Eating too much too quickly after a prolonged fast or consuming too many carbs after a prolonged fast can also cause a severe potassium deficiency, which can be dangerous.

My challenge for you is to start consuming a lot of foods high in potassium, like leafy greens, for one week and see how you feel. I think you're going to notice a big difference.

Dr. Eric Berg DC Bio:
Dr. Berg, age 58, is a chiropractor who specializes in Healthy Ketosis & Intermittent Fasting. He is the author of the best-selling book The Healthy Keto Plan, and is the Director of Dr. Berg Nutritionals®. He no longer practices, but focuses on health education through social media.

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Dr. Eric Berg received his Doctor of Chiropractic degree from Palmer College of Chiropractic in 1988. His use of “doctor” or “Dr.” in relation to himself solely refers to that degree. Dr. Berg is a licensed chiropractor in Virginia, California, and Louisiana, but he no longer practices chiropractic in any state and does not see patients so he can focus on educating people as a full-time activity, yet he maintains an active license. This video is for general informational purposes only. It should not be used to self-diagnose and it is not a substitute for a medical exam, cure, treatment, diagnosis, prescription, or recommendation. It does not create a doctor-patient relationship between Dr. Berg and you. You should not make any change in your health regimen or diet before first consulting a physician and obtaining a medical exam, diagnosis, and recommendation. Always seek the advice of a physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.

#keto #ketodiet #weightloss #ketolifestyle

Thanks for watching! I hope this helps increase your awareness of how much potassium you really need. I’ll see you in the next video.


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  1. Andreas R. on September 24, 2023 at 10:16 am

    I had cardiac arrhythmias and my doctor didn’t help me 😡Thank you Dr. Berg. I take potassium and magnesium myself every single day and my resting heart rate fell from 72 to 54 (!) in a few months 😊

    • TRP on September 24, 2023 at 10:21 am

      Which brand is used for

    • TRP on September 24, 2023 at 10:21 am

      What is your dose

    • Chris Constantinides on September 24, 2023 at 10:35 am

      Which form of potassium do you use?

    • Aaron Jennings on September 24, 2023 at 10:44 am

      Yes. Good work.

  2. Jennifer McInnis on September 24, 2023 at 10:39 am

    I was in the hospital with high blood pressure. They discovered I had a potassium deficiency and when they gave me potassium my blood pressure went down 30. That was a light bulb moment!

    • Madd World on September 24, 2023 at 11:26 am

      Honestly, we need so so much of it & then I read about oxalates & the first 4 on the food list for highest potassium are highest in oxalate levels

    • C4Caffeen on September 24, 2023 at 11:29 am

      I’m trying to find how much cream of tarter to safely use . I read 1 tsp. yesterday but I want more than 1 source to start on that. I have regular heart palpitations, I have to be careful, bending over can push it out of rhythm easily

    • Keto Diet on September 24, 2023 at 11:31 am

      @C4Caffeen Discuss with your MD. Under video Dr Berg says to talk to your Doctor.

    • GENETIC BEAST on September 24, 2023 at 1:37 pm

      Just eat meat it has all you need including potassium

    • soundgirl on September 24, 2023 at 3:39 pm

      Please google hyperaldosteronism. There is a simple blood test to test for it. If you have it, you’ll need more than potassium supplement.

  3. Margaret Miller on September 24, 2023 at 10:42 am

    So good to have you back…I’ll b increasing my potassium intake. Thank you for always giving great content. Long-term follower. ❤

  4. Linda A on September 24, 2023 at 10:44 am

    Timely topic and well presented! Thank you Dr. Berg 🩷

    • Dr. Eric Berg DC on September 24, 2023 at 12:49 pm

      You’re very welcome! Glad you liked it.

  5. L G on September 24, 2023 at 11:07 am

    Dr. Berg you are a national treasure. Thank you for caring about our health. ❤️

    • lucia defalco on September 24, 2023 at 12:54 pm

      … international as well 🙂

    • GENETIC BEAST on September 24, 2023 at 1:37 pm

      Just eat meat it has all you need including potassium

    • Merita Schmitt on September 25, 2023 at 8:21 am

      …an international treasure..😊

  6. Robin Walker @robinsnestradio on September 24, 2023 at 11:15 am

    Good morning everyone 🌄 Let’s keep on supporting Dr Berg because he has always given us information we can use to help make our health better👍🏽👍🏽

    • Jon Smith on September 24, 2023 at 12:58 pm

      definitely need to help stand against the censorship, first the political stuff, then the finance channels….. it was only a matter of time before the censorship made its way to the health and fitness channels

    • Nan's Global Kitchen on September 24, 2023 at 4:11 pm

      Yes agree 100% we can do this!

    • Chrissa D on September 24, 2023 at 5:36 pm

      Such great comment! 👍👍💯 @robinsnestradio

    • Robin Walker @robinsnestradio on September 24, 2023 at 8:00 pm

      @Chrissa D He has helped me stay well. Very grateful for him 👍🏽

    • Pearalta Melo on September 24, 2023 at 8:17 pm

      Absolutely! He has my vote!

  7. Rocky Giddings on September 24, 2023 at 11:54 am

    My wife passed away almost 5 years ago at 64 years old because her body was depleted of potassium. The doctors at the hospital told me that they tried pumping her full of potassium but it was going out faster than they could pump it in. Her heart had no potassium and just stopped.

    • Donna Agar on September 24, 2023 at 12:02 pm

      So sorry to hear that, my condolonces to you and your family ❤️‍🩹😔

    • ladytrinibee on September 24, 2023 at 12:13 pm

      My condolences to you and your family. Was it ever discovered why her potassium loss was so great, and was she on dialysis?

    • Rocky Giddings on September 24, 2023 at 12:15 pm

      @ladytrinibee she had an autoimmune disease called Sjogrens Syndrome.

    • HOPROPHETA on September 24, 2023 at 12:22 pm

      Both scary and sad. Condolences!

    • Meena Kothari on September 24, 2023 at 12:34 pm

      So sorry to hear abt Your loss. Wish more and more people get educated on healthcare by drs like dr. Berg. Thankyou dr Berg for helping humanity

  8. Riley512 on September 24, 2023 at 12:13 pm

    A few years ago the recommendation was lowered to 3400 mg for men and 2600 mg for women. No average person was eating 4700 mg, very hard to do without supplements. (powder potassium, can be dangerous if not diluted. Take it with food or dilute it in drink.))

    Potassium need depends on lifestyle and other circumstances. A 250 lbs man who is a physical worker (sweats a lot) needs double or more compared to a 110 lbs woman who works in an office.

    • Murray McEwan on September 24, 2023 at 3:25 pm

      He also needs twice as much dessert 😁 But somehow, the wimmens always get themselves the same size dessert

  9. Dharshini Priya on September 24, 2023 at 12:38 pm

    I been suffering from higher heart rates for a so long time. Thanks Dr Berg. Started taking potassium… my symptoms reduces greatly. Still had the same symptoms now and then… started magnesium recently and its a miracle. My heart rate fell down from nearly 90 to 67 today. It has instilled a great confidence in me. Thank you again Dr.Berg

    • Shawshank60 on September 24, 2023 at 1:13 pm

      Which Magnesium are you taking if I may ask. Also in which form? Pills powder, or liquid. There’s just so much info out there trying to figure which is best Thank You

    • CYndibabI on September 24, 2023 at 2:33 pm

      💭💭 WOW please share which brand potassium magnesium YOU take plus dose amount 👈🏻🤍

    • Mp Par on September 24, 2023 at 2:51 pm

      Please share which magnesium you take ! Thanks 😊

    • Bunny Bubs on September 24, 2023 at 4:07 pm

      Why don’t they answer ever 😂😩

  10. Robert Johnson on September 24, 2023 at 12:59 pm

    some high-potassium foods friendly to a paleo or ketogenic diet:
    – Swiss chard (1 cup, cooked): 961 mg
    – Spinach (1 cup, cooked): 839 mg
    – Avocado (1 medium): 690 mg
    – Beef liver (3 ounces, cooked): 444 mg
    – Brussels sprouts (1 cup, cooked): 494 mg
    – Mushrooms (1 cup, cooked): 428 mg
    – Salmon (3 ounces, cooked): 534 mg
    – Broccoli (1 cup, cooked): 505 mg
    – Pork tenderloin (3 ounces, cooked): 382 mg
    – Brazil nuts (1 ounce): 187 mg

    • Shiro Hige2 on September 24, 2023 at 2:58 pm


    • Brett on September 24, 2023 at 3:03 pm

      Spinach and chard are both sky-high in oxalates.

      Better to get potassium from other sources.

    • AzureSymbiote on September 24, 2023 at 3:06 pm

      Thank you.

    • Nikki on September 24, 2023 at 3:09 pm

      Does the raw form contain the same amount of Potassium? Or the cooking process increases it?

    • Murray McEwan on September 24, 2023 at 3:10 pm

      I still eat about 3 medium potatoes per week. Zero muscle cramping is the result. Leafy greens don’t cut it AFAIC. I used to gobble magnesium and salt the hell out of everything, ate salad etc, still degenerated to cramping.
      I’ll cope with the starch, thank you. The secret is to use your muscles sufficiently to deplete the glycogen stores so that they can grab the carbs. A potato has an ingredient list like health food, compared to grains.

  11. Jeanne Sampson on September 24, 2023 at 1:58 pm

    Im sure im speaking for the majority when i say we all appreciate and thank you from our hearts for what you do Dr Berg. God bless and keep you protected. 🤍🛐✝️

    • Nancy Brantley on September 25, 2023 at 2:55 am


    • Nick Garrity on September 25, 2023 at 4:22 pm

      Amen? Zeenew laughs at your false god, right Docturd Berg?

  12. Shez12 on September 24, 2023 at 2:09 pm

    Great info! It’s such a blessing to have Dr. Berg give us this info. I’m a nonsecretor and GAD65, with a number of autoimmune diseases. In my early years, I was stationed on a toxic military base, had 12 immunizations in one day like most military people, and was a nurse for many years having to have more immunizations to obtain jobs. Just grateful for every day I’m still here. I am prescribed 80 meq of potassium a day, which adds up to about 32 over-the-counter pills daily. Doctors don’t have a clue about my body. I have hyperoxaluria due to damage from celiac and working in a moldy government building more recently. I think I lose more potassium when I’m dumping oxalates. When I mention it, they look at me and treat me like I have mental problems. I start to not feel good when my potassium levels get on the very low edge of normal for some reason so they see me as a hypochondriac. I’m sure I have potassium highs and lows even eating the same diet. I have to stay aware of my body’s signs. Information from Dr. Berg has surely helped me with my health challenges. If I didn’t have this info I no doubt wouldn’t have made it this far.

    • Sardonic Mike on September 25, 2023 at 11:01 pm

      Since I had lived all around the world in some of the worst places, I had a very long and much stamped WHO yellow card. I wisely brought that with me to that military shot circus, you know, 45 shots in one giant air gun? I go an update to my plague, my tetanus and that was it.

  13. Debbie Minton on September 24, 2023 at 2:33 pm

    Dr. Berg, I have been studying your page for a long time, and this is the very information that saved me. I don’t think I would be here today if I had not learned this from you. Following a tornado, we had to be put in housing by our insurance co. till our house was rebuillt. We were eating in restaurants and I started having very high blood pressure. Many trips to the ER, I started studying on your page taught me about it. I have a large beautiful plate of brightly colored vegetablles every morning, and Avocado. for breakfast now. I stay as far away from the whites as I can. I do still love ice cream, but I know it is pure poison, so I try to steer clear. Thank you for all your good information.

    • Deborah Black Video Editing on September 24, 2023 at 5:35 pm

      Good for you for being so observant of the changes in your body, and not just turning to pills. So glad you’re feeling better! (Lol, chocolate ice cream is a huge weakness for me!)

    • Marcia Barreto on September 25, 2023 at 4:16 am

      Make ice cream with only the fruit. You will find recipes on you tube. Tastes and feels like the real thing! You can sweeten it with Xylitol also, very healthy.

    • Gentle Oldmoviefan on September 25, 2023 at 6:26 am

      I’ve found, for myself, that a good way to quit something “bad” in your food consumption — i.e., to overcome a food addiction (or “emotional eating”, as some would call it), such as ice cream (which truly is a nutritional disaster, IMHO), is by substitution. Best done in a “cold turkey” way. Especially for something as diabolically bad as ice cream. Don’t try to quit it gradually. Immediately replace it with another “buttery” (high fat) food treat, such as cream cheese. Gourmet cheeses, eaten slowly and intentionally savored, perhaps slathered with high quality (grass fed, organic, etc.) butter, with a little beef jerky on the side. Flavors that your mouth will love. Whatever’s a treat for you, food-wise. Keto coffee, a.k.a. butter keto coffee might be another example. Half and half, sour cream, high fat yogurt of ultra high quality. Even a brief dalliance with occasional cheesecake. As long as you don’t go getting addicted to something new. The key thing is to break the evil ice cream addiction. Break its back. Then celebrate your victory, and new freedom in your diet. I broke my long standing dark chocolate habit, after learning about how terrible oxalates were (from Sally K. Norton). I did it primarily through substitution: white chocolate for dark chocolate, then I gradually quit the white — because its high sugar was undesirable, and it was an unnecessary expense. Not worth the supposed “pleasure”. There are so many other foods to enjoy! We don’t have to be a prisoner to any one of them. God provided us with a great many different foods to enjoy. All the best, on your health journey. Congrats on coming so far, already.

    • Sardonic Mike on September 25, 2023 at 11:07 pm

      I have to thank my mother for saving me at an early age; she didn’t allow any soft drinks in the house and when we went on vacation we were only allowed on milkshake as a “treat”.
      It horrifies me to see so many people in the check out line, usually obese, and the foods they stuff into their fat slobbery mouths.

  14. Zack West on September 24, 2023 at 5:58 pm

    This is off topic but I want to say that for the past month I’ve been fasting 20-23 hours a day, I’ve lowered my carbs and went higher fat, and started eating more vegetables, taking vitamin d and cod liver oil daily, and I’ve lost around 12-13 pounds and my cystic acne is practically gone. My face was so bad and inflamed you couldn’t even see the pores in the mirror. It’s taken a list of consistency and discipline, but I can’t believe it’s working.

    • Zack West on September 24, 2023 at 6:01 pm

      I also want to add I practically cut out all dairy as well.

    • Cannonball on September 25, 2023 at 3:04 am

      How much protein/meat do you eat? What percentage of your diet is veggies? Really curious about what you’re eating daily

    • Billy Homeyer on September 25, 2023 at 3:06 am

      I wish I was you 👍

    • Zack West on September 25, 2023 at 3:10 am

      @Cannonball I don’t know exact percentages but for instance today I ate a good amount of chicken thighs, 2 to 3 cups of spinach, 2 servings of almonds, 1 serving of nutritional yeast, and a few grapes. I want to get up to 5 to 7 cups of vegetables. Hitting a healthy calorie amount has been tough but I’m so stinking full.

    • Cannonball on September 25, 2023 at 3:25 am

      @Zack West thank you that’s really interesting. I think for myself my magnesium is low. But that is more veggies than me. Do you not do red meat? My face has been inflamed but better now

  15. On The Money on September 25, 2023 at 1:09 am

    Dr. Berg is a special special man. This man wakes up everyday and helps millions of people make health decisions through priceless education.

    • Dr. Eric Berg DC on September 25, 2023 at 4:00 am

      Thank you very much for your comment. Appreciate it!

    • Sara Sa on September 25, 2023 at 6:40 pm


  16. Giovanni Baugé on September 25, 2023 at 9:59 am

    I’m glad that someone finally emphasizes the importance of potassium. This is also one of my battles to bring health awareness

  17. YaYaThE TaTtOoFaCe on September 25, 2023 at 9:59 am

    I have UPJ and my left kidney only functions about 14%. I found this out when I was 22. I do have problems every now and again with breathing. I also feel more tired than normal. I appreciate this information. Now I understand why I had so much energy when I was vegan. All of the vegetables helped my lack of nutrients.

  18. Gym shorts on September 25, 2023 at 10:27 am

    1. Introduction to Potassium:
    – Daily potassium requirement is 4700 mg.
    – Potassium is crucial for the sodium-potassium pump, essential for cell function.

    2. Sources of Potassium:
    – Vegetables are a primary potassium source (500-800 mg per cup of leafy greens).
    – Bananas provide about 300 mg of potassium but also contain fructose.

    3. Potassium Deficiency:
    – Common due to insufficient dietary intake and inadequate supplements (typically up to 99 mg per tablet).
    – Difficult to diagnose with vague early symptoms like difficulty breathing and fatigue.

    4. Symptoms and Risks of Deficiency:
    – Early symptoms: difficulty breathing, fatigue, heart palpitations.
    – Severe deficiency risks: high blood pressure, stroke, fluid retention, bone loss, kidney stones.

    5. Causes of Potassium Deficiency:
    – Beyond dietary lack, caused by medications (penicillin, diuretics, steroids), chronic stress, high insulin, and certain diets (keto, prolonged fasting).

    6. Keto Diet and Prolonged Fasting:
    – Potential for potassium deficiency due to water weight loss and inadequate potassium intake.
    – Emphasizes the importance of consuming enough potassium and supplementing during fasting.

    7. Health Challenge:
    – Encourages a potassium-rich diet for one week, focusing on leafy greens to experience potential health improvements.

  19. DOLO117 G on September 25, 2023 at 11:10 am

    Dr. Berg I want to say thanks for all you do. I reversed my type 2 diabetes,and healed my legs from diabetic neuropathy watching your videos,and researching things I learn from you and a couple other doctors. After my doctor told me that my A1Cs were in compliance I sorta started eating crappy,and I gained a few pounds,and have decided to stick to what got me healed. I have a smoothie like shake with plenty of leafy greens, wild blueberries and a mixture organic superfood powders that they say help control blood sugar. The mega benfotiamine worked just like you said it would. I no longer have pain in my legs,no longer on a cane. About to start back brisk walking to strengthen my legs and slowly get back into running. I just looked at my potassium bottle to see how much was in each serving……99. I’m absolutely not taking 47 💊. I think I am going to start writing notes of things I did in case one of my family members have to deal with diabetes. I hear health videos are getting banned,have you experienced this? I am a 53 yr old Melonated American who still has a lot more living to do. Thank you and I sincerely love you keep up the good work❤❤❤

  20. Ole Falla on September 25, 2023 at 9:06 pm

    This Doctor needs to be cloned and put into EVERY medical school to re-educate doctors with correct information about HEALTH. He is brilliant, and a gem of a person to anyone with common sense about how to improve their health in a sustained way. I just love learning from his simple to understand videos … I respect this man immensely. 👍👍👍

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