Why do we have leg and arm cramps when we are low on potassium??
Potassium ions are one of the most important electrolytes in our body and essential to both cellular and electrical function.
Potassium plays a very critical role in the transmission of a nerve impulse across the cell membrane.
When potassium levels are low in case of hypokalemia, the cell membrane has in prolonged hyperpolarization condition as a result, and the cells cannot repolarize and are unable to fire an action potential repeatedly and therefore muscles and nerves may function abnormally.
The effects of low potassium include may cause the following symptoms: muscle weakness, muscle cramps, etc.. In hypokalemia, a greater than normal stimulus is required for depolarization of the membrane to initiate an action potential.