History of potassium
Potassium was discovered in the autumn of 1807 the English chemist Davy by the electrolysis of solid potassium hydroxide. Moisten potassium hydroxide, scientists have isolated the metal, which gave the name potassy, alluding to the production of potash (essential ingredient for the manufacture of detergents) of ash. His familiar name of the metal received two years later, in 1809, initiated the renaming of the substance became LV Gilbert, who proposed the name of potassium (from the Arabic al-potassium – potassium).
General characteristics of potassium
Potassium (lat. Kalium) is a soft alkali metal, an element of main group I Groups, IV period of the periodic table of chemical elements DI Mendeleev, has the atomic number 19 and symbol – K.
Being in nature
Potassium in the free state in nature does not occur, it is included in all cells. Enough common metal, takes 7th place on the content of the earth’s crust . The main suppliers of potassium are Canada, India and Russia, which have large deposits of the substance.
Physical and chemical properties
Potassium – a low-melting metal is silvery-white. It tends to paint a naked flame on a bright purple-pink color.
Potassium has a high reactivity, it is a strong reducing agent. In response to the explosion occurs with water, with a long stay in the air breaks down completely. Therefore potassium requires certain conditions for storage – it is poured layer of kerosene, silicone or gasoline, to avoid damaging the metal contacts with water and the atmosphere.
Foods rich in potassium
The main dietary sources of potassium are peanut butter, citrus, grapes , all green vegetables with leaves, mint leaves , sunflower seeds . Potassium enough in fish and dairy products . Actually, potassium is a part of almost all plants. Apple cider vinegar and honey – the champions of the content of potassium.
Foods rich in potassium
The daily requirement for potassium
The daily requirement of the human body in potassium depends on the age, physical condition, and even residence. Healthy adults people need 2.5 g of potassium, pregnant women – 3,5g, athletes – to 5 grams of potassium daily. The amount of potassium needed for teens is calculated by weight – 20 mg of potassium per 1 kg of body weight.
Useful properties of potassium and its effect on the body
Potassium with sodium regulates the water balance in the body and heart rhythm normalizes, maintains the concentration of physiological functions and magnesium .
Potassium is involved in the process of nerve impulses and transmit them to the innervated organs. It promotes better brain function, improving its supply of oxygen . It has a positive effect in many allergic conditions. Potassium is required for skeletal muscle contractions. Potassium regulates the content of salts in the body, alkalis and acids, thus contributing to reduction of edema.
Potassium is found in all of the intracellular fluids, it is necessary for normal vital functions of soft tissues (muscles, blood vessels and capillaries, endocrine glands, etc.)
Potassium is absorbed from the intestine into the body, which comes from food, normally excreted in the urine in the same amount. Excess potassium excreted from the body in the same way, not delayed and does not accumulate. The obstacles for the normal intake of potassium can serve as an excessive use of coffee, sugar, alcohol.
Interaction with other
Potassium works closely with sodium and magnesium, with an increase in the concentration of potassium from the body rapidly displayed sodium, and reduce the amount of magnesium may impair the absorption of potassium.
Interaction with other elements
Signs of a lack of potassium
The lack of potassium in the body is characterized by muscle weakness, fatigue, decreased immunity, dysfunction of the myocardium, impaired arterial pressure, palpitations and difficulty breathing. Skin may peel off, damage do not heal, the hair is very dry and brittle. Failures occur in the gastrointestinal tract – nausea, vomiting, upset stomach up to gastritis and ulcers.
Symptoms of excess potassium
The overabundance of potassium overdose occurs when products containing potassium, and is characterized by neuromuscular disorders, excessive sweating, excitability, irritability and tearfulness. Man is constantly experiencing the feeling of thirst, which leads to frequent urination. Gastrointestinal tract reacts intestinal colic, alternating constipation and diarrhea.
Potassium Application in the life
Potassium in the form of basic compounds is widely used in medicine, agriculture and industry. Potash fertilizers are needed for normal growth and ripening of the plants, and all known potassium permanganate, it is nothing like potassium permanganate, time-tested antiseptic.