January 25, 2011
WHITE PLAINS, N.Y.A new ConsumerLab.com report on the quality of potassium supplements found each product selected for review contained the claimed amount of this essential mineral, did not exceed contamination limits for lead, and, if a pill, was able to properly break apart.
The report found the cost to obtain 99 mg of potassium, a common serving size, varied from 1 cent to 34 cents, although those costing the most provided magnesium as well as potassium.
"We are glad that the findings for this group of potassium products were positive, but consumers should keep in mind that even straightforward supplements like potassium don't always deliver what they promise," said Tod Cooperman, MD, ConsumerLab.com's president. "The supplement product you choose may affect your well-being, particularly if you rely on it to prevent or treat a deficiency."
Potassium supplements are used to treat or prevent potassium deficiency and are commonly taken by people on diuretic drugs that treat high blood pressure, but cause potassium loss. Potassium deficiency can cause muscle weakness, irregular heartbeat, listlessness, mood change, nausea and vomiting. Potassium may also help lower blood pressure in people who consume high amounts of sodium. Sales of potassium supplements in the United States were estimated at $82 million in 2009 according to Nutrition Business Journal.
The ConsumerLab.com report includes quality ratings, price comparisons and ingredient comparisons for 10 products selected, tested, and rated by ConsumerLab.com as well as for three that passed ConsumerLab.com's Voluntary Certification Program. Also listed is a product similar to one that passed testing, but is sold under a different brand name. Potassium supplement brands included are Country Life, Julian Whitaker, M.D., Members Mark (Sams Club), Metagenics, Nature Made, Natures Bounty, NOW, NSI Nutriceutical Sciences Institute (Vitacost.com), Nutricology, Rite Aid Pharmacy, Source Naturals, Vitamin Shoppe, Vitamin World and VitaSmart Natural (K-Mart).
ConsumerLab.com provides consumer information and independent evaluations of products that affect health and nutrition. ConsumerLab.com is privately held and based in Westchester, NY.
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