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Sodium - function

Fluid and electrolyte balance, acid-base balance, maintains muscle irritability, regulates cell membrane permeability and nerve impulse transmission

Sodium - deficiency

Rare, except with chronic diarrhea or vomiting and certain renal disorders; nausea, dizziness, muscle cramps, apathy

Sodium - toxicity

Hypertension, edema

Potassium - function

Fluid and electrolyte balance, acid-base balance, nerve impulse transmission, catalyst for many metabolic reactions, involved in skeletal and cardiac muscle activity

Potassium - deficiency

Muscular weakness, paralysis, anorexia, confusion (occurs with

Potassium - toxicity

Toxicity (from supplements/drugs) Muscular weakness, vomiting

Chloride - function

Fluid and electrolyte balance, acid-base balance, component of hydrochloric acid in stomach

Chloride - Deficiency

Rare, may occur secondary to chronic diarrhea or vomiting and certain renal disorders: muscle cramps, anorexia, apathy

Chloride - Toxicity

Normally harmless; can cause vomiting

Calcium - Function

Bone and teeth formation and maintenance, blood clotting,
nerve transmission, muscle contraction and relaxation,
cell membrane permeability, blood pressure

Calcium - Deficiency

Children: impaired growth
Adults: osteoporosis

Calcium - toxicity

Constipation, increased risk of renal stone formation, impaired absorption of iron and other minerals

Phosphorus - function

Bone and teeth formation and maintenance, acid-base
balance, energy metabolism, cell membrane structure,
regulation of hormone and coenzyme activity

Phosphorus - deficiency


Phosphorus - toxicity

Low blood calcium

Magnesium - function

Bone formation, nerve transmission, smooth muscle
relaxation, protein synthesis, carbohydrate metabolism,
enzyme activity

Magnesium - Deficiency

Weakness, confusion; growth failure in children
Severe deficiency: convulsions, hallucinations, tetany

Magnesium - toxicity

No toxicity demonstrated from food Supplemental Mg can cause
diarrhea, nausea, and cramping. Excessive Mg from magnesium in Epsom salts causes diarrhea.

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