February 11, 2016

Phosphate Salts

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How does Phosphate Salts work?

Phosphates are normally absorbed from food and are important chemicals in the body. They are involved in cell structure, energy transport and storage, vitamin function, and numerous other processes essential to health. Phosphate salts can act as laxatives by causing more fluid to be drawn into the intestines and stimulating the gut to push out its contents faster.

Are there safety concerns?

Phosphate salts containing sodium, potassium, aluminum, or calcium appear to be safe for most people when used occasionally or short term. Regular-long-term use can upset the balance of phosphates and other chemicals in the body and should be monitored by a healthcare professional to avoid serious side effects. Phosphate salts can irritate the digestive tract and cause stomach upset, diarrhea, constipation, and other problems.

Phosphate salts from dietary sources are likely safe for pregnant or breast-feeding women when used at the recommended allowances of 1250 mg daily for mothers between 14-18 years of age and 700 mg daily for those over 18 years of age. Other amounts should only be used with the advice and ongoing care of a healthcare professional.

Do not confuse phosphate salts with substances such as organophosphates, or with tribasic sodium phosphates and tribasic potassium phosphates which are very poisonous.

Do not take phosphate salts unless prescribed by a healthcare professional if:
  • You have kidney disease.
  • You have heart disease.
  • You have high or low calcium blood levels.
  • You have high phosphate blood levels.
  • You have a condition which causes the body to retain fluid (edema), including heart failure, liver problems (cirrhosis), and other conditions.

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