Having Great Success Managing My Tinnitus with My Potassium Protocol

Discussion in 'Success Stories' started by Sharman, Mar 1, 2020.

    1. Sharman

      Sharman Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2014
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      digoxin
      I am going on two years now, following a protocol I stumbled onto, which is working remarkably well to manage my tinnitus.

      In a nutshell, what you do is moderate the amount of Potassium in your diet and, paradoxically, supplement with Potassium tablets. I call it the “Potassium Protocol.”

      I wrote about the Potassium Protocol on this website back when I was first exploring it.

      Try This: A Magnesium, Potassium, Calcium Protocol

      I write again today (i) to report that, damn, this thing really does work and (ii) to refine the rules and tips I offered in those first posts.

      Will this work for you?

      I would not doubt, what works for one sufferer might not work for another. So, here’s (i) what my tinnitus is all about and (ii) why the Potassium Protocol might still work for you even if you’re not like me.

      My tinnitus was brought on by taking the heart drug Digoxin. I early discovered that spikes were triggered by eating certain foods (soy, salicylates and others), and I was able to manage the noise somewhat by avoiding the food triggers. It was a hard diet to follow, and was only mediocre at controlling the ear buzz.

      Your tinnitus is probably different. But I believe that potassium could well be the key to tinnitus management for many sufferers, for this reason: It was reading on this website about drugs that controlled tinnitus well, but had such dreadful side effects they weren’t feasible, that got me to explore potassium: those effective drugs targeted the Potassium channels in the ears’ hair cells.

      In the rat trials for the Potassium-channel-targeting tinnitus drugs, tinnitus was induced in rats in two ways, by noise and by chemicals. (I figure, with my drug onset, I’m like the chemically induced rats.) The drugs worked on both kinds of rat tinnitus, both noise and chemical induced. Hence, managing Potassium, my Protocol, might just simply work, regardless of what caused or flares the condition for you.

      A few simple rules

      These are the rules for the Potassium Protocol.

      1) Limit the amount of Potassium in your diet.

      It is pretty easy to look up the Potassium content of various foods; since kidney patients must strictly limit their Potassium intake, you can google just about any food, including by brand.

      2) When controlling the amount of Potassium in your diet, you have to do it by amount of Potassium relative to other foods in the same meal.

      A handful of nuts by itself will trigger the buzz, but in a meal with many other low- or zero-Potassium foods, no problem.

      Now, as a practical matter, this rule means that you need to include a fair amount of empty calorie carbohydrates (see, “How can this be integrated into a diet?” below). All protein has Potassium, and fats (so far as I observe) don’t seem to count one way or the other. That leaves carbohydrates as the only food to use for balance.

      Healthy forms of carbohydrates are high in Potassium, as are potatoes and other root vegetables. So, you do white rice, white bread, pasta, other white-flour-based starchy sides and yes, sugar. I’m a dessert eater, which no doubt was helpful in leading me to the Potassium Protocol.

      3) Supplement with Potassium.

      Paradoxically, while limiting Potassium from food, the next part is to supplement with Potassium pills.

      Weird huh? By my very rough calculation, the supplements I consume more or less make up for the modest restriction I place on dietary intake, or maybe I’m a bit below the recommended 4000 mg daily. Kidney patients do fine on a very Potassium-restricted diet.

      I started out the experiment by taking three 100 mg tablets with light meals, like breakfast or lunch, and five 100 mg tablets with dinner. It worked, so that’s the dosage I’ve continued to do. You can always experiment with more or less, with taking additional pills if you have a third meal in the day, etc. I usually eat only one or two meals a day, so don’t have personal experience to offer there.

      4) Maybe limit Calcium too.

      I’m not sure about this one, if a meal high in Calcium is a problem on top of the Potassium already often found in Calcium-rich foods. Observe your own reactions and adjust accordingly.

      5) Maybe supplement with Magnesium.

      When I first wrote up the Protocol, see link above, I included a recommendation to supplement heavily with Magnesium, which can best be done by slathering your body in a product called “Magnesium oil”; with the oil, you absorb the mineral through your skin, much more efficiently (and pleasantly) than by mouth.

      I no longer think it is necessary to do big doses of Magnesium, once or every other week is sufficient. Whether you need to do Magnesium at all I don’t know; since I do Magnesium oil anyway for other reasons, I’ve not experimented with foregoing it altogether. Others on this site have written that Magnesium oil by itself helps their tinnitus. Magnesium is critically important for the body to absorb and use Potassium, so I would not be surprised if it helped the Potassium Protocol. Check the link to my earlier posts for tips on using Magnesium oil.

      The more you follow the Protocol, the better it works

      The very good news I discovered after a couple months successfully following the Protocol is, the longer and more faithfully you follow it, the better it works.

      This means, the tinnitus control gets better: The buzz gets softer and less frequent.

      This also means, the diet can get less strict: you can eat some high-potassium foods and not suffer consequences. When you’re on a particularly good streak, it can actually become hard to keep track of what you can and can’t eat. I will find myself thinking, well, I can have a piece of chocolate cake, a seed-rich bread, a fondue dinner—I ate that last week and didn’t pay a price. And then I’ll overdo it, and have to be stricter for a while, to get back to that sweet spot.

      What to look for and expect

      The tinnitus effects usually come the day after. Follow the Protocol and you can hope to have a good day tomorrow. Mess up, and the next day you’ll hear from your ears. But! Get back on the wagon, and you can reasonably expect to have it under control again in a day or two.

      Among other things, that means you don’t have to abjectly deny yourself. If you have a celebration, or just a craving, you can enjoy an off-Protocol meal secure in the knowledge that you can get back on the wagon tomorrow, and the consequences will be short-lived.

      How can this be integrated into a diet targeted at other issues?

      Right off the bat, of course, the low-carb diets won’t work. Those empty carbs are, sadly, crucial to success. Atkins, Keto, can’t combine those with the Protocol.

      It’s also going to be hard to eat vegetarian and do the Protocol, as most non-meat-based proteins are high in Potassium—beans, soy, dairy, nuts, seeds. Beans (including soy), nuts and seeds are especially high in Potassium. But you can give it a try, by balancing with lots of empty carbs, and maybe leaning hard on eggs and dairy. A vegan diet would be even harder.

      (Having said, oils from high-Potassium foods all seem to be completely Potassium-free. Thus soy is high, but soybean oil is zero; ditto coconut and coconut oil.)

      Gluten-free also seems near impossible. All gluten-free flour/bread/pasta substitutes seem to be made from either nuts or legumes (beans) or seeds, and potatoes of course are high in Potassium. So far as I can see, to avoid gluten, that leaves you rice and maybe corn-based starches (corn is very high, tortillas in moderation seem ok, but might not provide the empty-carb balance you need for the other Potassium in your meal (you got to at least have a protein)).

      The diet I follow for weight control is the Carbohydrate Addict’s Diet. In this diet, you eat low-carb, Atkins-style for most of the day, and for one meal, you can eat whatever you want, so long as that meal (i) starts with a large salad, (ii) includes protein and a non-starchy vegetable (in addition to the large salad) and (iii) lasts no longer than an hour. Obviously, you can’t do the no-carb part of this diet if you’re following the Protocol.

      After many years on the Carbohydrate Addict’s Diet (this precedes my tinnitus onset), I came to a place where I’d have coffee in the morning, and usually just not be hungry til dinner. So—when I settled in to try to combine the Protocol with the Diet, I tried long and hard to find some morning beverage to take the place of the high-Potassium coffee. It just didn’t work. So now, I try to have just the one big meal a day and nothing else.

      Yeah, it can be hard to combine the Protocol with other diets.

      For me then, I sometimes have to argue with myself to not give in to morning hunger, and now and then, I lose the argument and cheat on the Diet. Or I cheat on the Protocol. I’m still very grateful for both things in my life. There’s still great benefit to both.

      My suggestion for giving the Protocol a try

      If you want to give this a try, my suggestion is, follow the diet I did when I first stumbled my way onto the Protocol. If that works, you can experiment further with a diet more to your taste.

      For various reasons, I started by having a McDonald’s egg McMuffin and small coffee (cream and sugar) for breakfast (three 100 mg tabs of Potassium). When I had early success with the ears, but saw it would take some work to fine-tune things, I continued to start each day with the McDonalds breakfast, to keep that piece of the experiment constant. I tried to duplicate the coffee and McMuffin at home, but it didn’t work as well (perhaps because I was brewing real coffee, who knows).

      Though the carb-heavy breakfast was obviously not in accordance with my weight-management diet, I continued to follow the Carbohydrate Addict’s dinner rules.

      So: If you want to duplicate exactly how I ate when I discovered the Protocol and was able to duplicate the success day after day, as a way of trying it out for yourself:

      Have the McDonald’s breakfast, with three 100 mg tabs of Potassium.

      Have a dinner that starts with a large salad, includes protein and a vegetable like broccoli or asparagus, enjoy lots of empty-calorie carbs like bread and pasta and sugary, low-Potassium desserts. Five 100 mg tabs.

      Err on the side of very low Potassium, when you are giving the Protocol the test drive.

      If and when you discover that yes, this does work for you, then you can experiment with combining the Protocol with a diet that suits the rest of your life.

      Some Potassium-avoiding tips

      The most important tip is, look everything up til you know what is and isn’t high in Potassium, and keep looking up--anything new, anytime you can’t figure out a spike, etc. But here are some broad strokes I discovered, to speed you on your way:

      Soups and stocks; cooking with wine. Any soup made with stock is an automatic no. Stock, even vegetable stock, is absurdly high in potassium, like 1500 mg per cup.

      Add wine to the mix, and that’s another dose, though you can probably get away with wine in a braise, go easy on the sauce.

      Other soups likely have a tomato- or milk-based broth. Not as bad as stock, but still, things to enjoy only in moderation.

      Also, beware of stock used in recipes. A small amount of stock- (and/or wine-) based sauce is probably ok, but if there’s a lot of stock going on, it’s probably best to pass. (This was an ah ha moment for me, explaining why, pre-Protocol, chicken paprikash always zoomed my ears up, despite having no salicylates or similar trigger foods. Ask yourself if your spikes are sometimes preceded by a meal high in Potassium.)

      Beans/legumes. So very high in Potassium, I usually just pass on these dishes. Remember, soy is a bean (soy sauce is ok). Soy milk is out. Try the rice milk instead.

      Nuts and seeds. Sadly, most nuts and seeds are also on the watch list. Many dishes have a sprinkling of nuts and seeds, and that’s probably ok. But that seedy bread—keep it in moderation, and don’t count on it to serve as the empty calorie balance your meal needs. Coconut is a nut.

      Empty carb snacks. Look up all snacks by brand name. You’d think most crackers are ok, but in fact, very few are. Goldfish are ok, plain pretzels likewise, some mustard on the pretzels or flavored pretzels, maybe ok. Plain matzoh, of all things, has to be kept in moderation (ah, I see the label says it has malt).

      Corn-based snacks. These I’m unsure of. Corn itself is high, but tortillas don’t have a super-high count, and it often seems like I can get away with those chips. Popcorn not so much.

      And always, look it up: You’d think an English crumpet is a perfect, empty calorie bread—turns out, it uses a Potassium-based thing as a leavening agent. Cornbread: oops, made with lots of buttermilk, on top of the eggs and cornmeal.

      Potatoes. High in Potassium, of course, but you can mitigate it. Peel it, and boil it twice. This will reduce the amount of Potassium to where you can enjoy a potato with that entrée that really demands a potato; whether that potato is now so fully reduced to an empty calorie carb—so as to balance the meal—I do not know.

      Tired of pretzels and want potato chips for your SuperBowl party? Go for the Pringles.

      Onion rings instead of French fries.

      Fruit. Berries are ok, apples (peeled) you can get away with. Most melons are high in Potassium. Citrus is usually listed as high, but I’ve been able to get away with an orange juice now and then, grapefruit, limeade; squeezes of lemon and lime are no problem.

      Earl Grey tea. Don’t drink this, it has an additive that—I forget why—is very Potassium-like. Who knew.

      Alcohol. Wine is high in Potassium, some spirits are low or zero. That’s not to say that you can never enjoy wine with your meal. Just watch the overall Potassium relative to the rest of the meal, adjust if the wine is causing spikes--and enjoy when you want to enjoy, confident that the consequences will only last a day or two.

      Check out my earlier post. For additional suggestions and examples, link above.

      Sometimes, you just can’t see a reason. If the food seems to zoom your ears up, even if you can’t see a good reason for it, just accept it and put it on the caution list.


      That’s it. Let me know any questions. I sure hope it helps you.
       
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    2. FGG
      No Mood

      FGG Member Podcast Patron Benefactor Ambassador Hall of Fame Advocate

      Tinnitus Since:
      01/2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Multi-factorial
      I definitely don't see why this would hurt to try but could you walk me through the "how" this is supposed to work.
       
    3. MRItechssuck
      Disappointed

      MRItechssuck Member

      Location:
      USA
      Tinnitus Since:
      Severe 10/17/2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Loud noise, MRI
      I’d like this diet, except I’d also eventually weigh 400lbs.

      How bad was your tinnitus before the diet, what could you hear it over... would it mask?

      How about after staying on your diet?

      Thanks.
       
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    4. ThomasW

      ThomasW Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      February 2019(nearly gone)
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Medication
      The worst thing about tinnitus is what's worked for you is the complete opposite for me. Restricting Potassium + Calcium and taking Magnesium spikes my tinnitus. If I eat bananas and drink milk it reduces my tinnitus but eating sodium rich foods that compete and offset potassium raise my tinnitus within an hour or two and sugar can spike it in 20-30 mins.
       
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    5. Tybs

      Tybs Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      04/2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Fall from stairs
      @Sharman What is the cause of your T?
       
    6. all to gain
      No Mood

      all to gain Member Podcast Patron Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:
      -
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      -
      Nice it works for you Sharman.

      Damn, and here I was thinking nuts and bananas were the best thing ever for my ears.

      Why is it then that almost every source says potassium is good for hearing and for battling tinnitus?
       
    7. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Sharman

      Sharman Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2014
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      digoxin
      I can't figure out how to reply to the individual posts, so I'll answer questions like this.

      1) Doesn't hurt to try, but how is this supposed to work?

      So first, yes, this is an easy thing to try. I was able to buy potassium supplements at a local supermarket with a big supplements department, but you would certainly find it online if not in your local store.

      How this is supposed to work is certainly an interesting question. I'll hazard a guess, but it's really just a guess.
      Firstly, know that I didn't come up with this by deduction I stumbled onto it. I figured, if the potassium-channel-targeting drugs work, then let's try supplementing with potassium. And it worked! Then it didn't work, so I checked what I'd been eating and found that my tinnitus spiked after meals with high potassium. So I figured, well, the trick must be eating low potassium. So I ate low potassium and cut out the supplements, and naw, that didn't work. So finally, I tried eating low potassium and taking the supplements, and bingo, that combo worked like a charm. Weird, I'm the first to say.

      My guess is, the supplements provide a smooth, time-released flow of potassium to the ears, while simultaneously eating low potassium from food keeps you from over-doing potassium with the addition of potassium supplements, or getting a spike of potassium from too much potassium in one meal.

      Why potassium delivery is key to managing tinnitus, my guess (and here, really, I'm basing this on very little research):

      The hair cells in the ear are plump little water balloons that, when healthy, sit up nice and proud and, when hit with vibrations in the ear fluid, bend over in the vibration-producing sound waves.

      The hair cells are like little trap doors. When they bend over, they open the trap door, allowing sodium and potassium to mix, creating a chemical reaction that stimulates the nerves cells to hear sound.

      In tinnitus, those poor hair cells are properly plumped up. So they lie down or flop around. The trap door is open and the chemicals mix and produce non-stop noise.

      Managing the delivery of potassium to the hair cells keeps them plump and upright and the trap door shut.

      My very wild-assed guess.
       
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    8. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Sharman

      Sharman Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2014
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      digoxin
      2) Diet sounds wonderful, but I'd get very fat on it! How bad was your tinnitus before you found this way to manage it? How bad is it now you are doing this potassium-managing diet?

      First off, the Carbohydrate Addict's Diet is itself a wonderful little miracle, you truly can eat as much and whatever you want and lose weight. If you can combine it successfully with the Potassium Protocol, weight should not be a problem. I will admit, it can be hard to limit yourself to one meal. Many days, that's not a problem for me, or if I get hungry, I can wait it out and the hunger passes.

      I'm also able to eat dinner whenever I want--e.g., by 3 or 4, yeah I want dinner, but that usually holds me for the day.

      One last thing about the Carbohydrate Addict's Diet, it's very forgiving. If you cheat a day or two, but get back on the wagon, you don't pay too bad a price.

      So, can you do the Potassium Protocol without a completely disgusting fattening diet?

      I'm largely eating how I want to eat, not trying to figure out the absolute limits and requirements of the Potassium Protocol. But the good news for your question is, the success is not all-or-nothing, it's degrees of success. So, if you are at all curious, I'd recommend (i) try it full bore, really do the empty carbs. You'll know very soon if this works for your tinnitus. And if it does, then (ii) experiment with eating the healthier diet you prefer. You might find a happy medium where you can reduce your tinnitus significantly, but still maintain a diet that appeals to you.

      To your other questions:

      My tinnitus onset was in 2014 or 2015, when I started a drug for heart rhythm issues. I was lucky to quickly discover that spikes were triggered by eating certain foods (soy, salicylates and others), so I could manage it somewhat, and therefore never did suffer the really awful discomfort I read about. So yes, it's a good question, whether my tinnitus is so much milder than yours, that what worked for me won't work for you.

      I can say, my then management techniques weren't hugely successful, and on bad days, it would certainly be constant and impossible to ignore and depressing. I'd say a good measure of the noise level is, bad enough to have to turn the TV way up to hear it, and hating the resultant cacaphony. I discovered Potassium Protocol in 2018, so didn't spend too many years assessing the level of my tinnitus.

      Now for the fun question: How bad or good is the tinnitus now you're following the Potassium Protocol?

      It's great, amazing, really good. Total silence if I'm good about the diet, most of the time, or the low kind you have to consciously listen for to hear. Varying degrees of noise if I'm not being careful with the Protocol, to the point of that, ugh, this is awful, how can people live with this? noise levels. And in between, depending on how good a job I do following the Protocol.

      Also, how it is for me now: If I'm not in a good groove, I will often get the noise in the morning--but it goes away by afternoon. If I've done a bad meal the day before, I'll get a spike following today's meal--but that goes away.

      That kind of tinnitus--can be completely silent, or audible or but have to listen for it, or audible but not uncomfortable to very occasionally awful. And it varies thoughout the day.
       
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    9. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Sharman

      Sharman Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2014
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      digoxin
      3) What worked for you is the opposite for me: low potassium + magnesium spikes it, and sugar spikes it immediately.

      You do seem to be sensitive to potassium levels, so maybe give this idea a try for a day or two? There is one thing you are not doing, and that's taking potassium supplements while doing low-potassium meals. And you can get your empty-calorie carbs from starches, if sugar is a specific problem. Good luck
       
    10. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Sharman

      Sharman Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2014
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      digoxin
      4) What caused my tinnitus?

      Taking the heart drug Digoxin. Ototoxic drug onset.
       
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    11. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Sharman

      Sharman Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2014
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      digoxin
      5) Why does every source say potassium is good for your ears and tinnitus?

      It seems there is agreement, that potassium is the key to managing tinnitus, if only we can figure out how to turn it in the lock.

      If you look at the wild-ass guess I posited in my first reply above, my hypothesis is, combining supplements with meals that moderate potassium intake and balance it with low potassium foods provides a careful, steady supply of potassium to the ears, so you don't get uneven spikes of the stuff.

      If I can elaborate further on the wild-ass guess: The effective drugs that targeted the potassium channels of the hair cells worked both when they opened the channels and when they closed the channels. (The channels are the openings in the cell wall that let nutrients in and out.) So there's something about the balance or tension between potassium inside the cell and potassium in the fluid outside the cell, and getting the potassium in in sufficient quantity and/or getting it out. And/or, the relative concentrations between inside and outside the hair cells--that may be the trick to keeping those little water balloons plump and upright and functioning properly.
       
    12. Tybs

      Tybs Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      04/2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Fall from stairs
      If you select text in a post, a small "quote" button appears. When you press it, the quote will be inserted at the current position of your text cursor in your reply below the topic. You can use this to quote multiple people in one post :)
       
    13. FGG
      No Mood

      FGG Member Podcast Patron Benefactor Ambassador Hall of Fame Advocate

      Tinnitus Since:
      01/2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Multi-factorial
      Once I get through my Coronavirus rations, I am probably going to try this. Load up damaged potassium receptors with pulse, more regulated potassium therapy? I'm not sure of the science but it seems harmless at least. I'm in (in a few months...).
       
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    14. Lyta Norman

      Lyta Norman Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2014
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Unknown
      Sharman, what form of potassium do you take?
       
    15. Matchbox

      Matchbox Member

      Location:
      BC Canada
      Tinnitus Since:
      August 2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Noise Induced, Prednisone (drones), Barotrauma (distortions)
      This kind of requires basic knowledge of how K and Na work on nerves.

      I don't see how this fluctuating would make a difference. I thought about supplementing with K, but I thought the pump pushed K "INTO" the cell, not out of. Hyperpolarizing with diet would make sense by lowering sodium, not by increasing K outside the cells (if anything that would slow it down and cause less polarization).

      Getting more K into the cell makes sense but this won't do it.

      I'm super tired, please correct me if I'm wrong. The Na/K thing creating a net negative polarity maintained by K flux across the membrane always broke my brain a little.
       
    16. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Sharman

      Sharman Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2014
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      digoxin
      Lyta, so far as I can tell, generic Potassium is widely sold. I've been buying mine from a local independent supermarket, which sells the supplement under its own house brand. You can buy on the internet easily. While I talk of taking 100 mg tabs, they are usually sold as 99 mg tabs. No idea why
       
    17. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Sharman

      Sharman Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2014
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      digoxin
      Matchbox, this is my understanding of how hearing works.

      The hair cells are plump little balloons full of Potassium (K), which sit on a "trap door" over a pool of Sodium (NA). When sound waves push the hair cells, they move, opening the trap door so the K mixes with the NA, and the resultant chemical reaction stimulates the nerve cells, creating sound.

      In tinnitus, the hair cells are beat up, flaccid, flopping around. The trap door is open and K and NA mix creating unwanted sound.

      My entire inspiration for experimenting with Potassium was reading (on this forum) about drugs that helped reduce tinnitus both in humans and rat trials, but had such awful side effects, they were not feasible therapies. Those drugs affected the Potassium channels in the hair cells, "Potassium channels" being the sites on the cell membrane that allow Potassium to flow in and out of the cell. Drugs that closed the channels and that opened the channels both worked.

      My for-what-it's-worth hypothesis about how my potassium protocol works is this: It creates a fairly level, stable concentration of Potassium for the hair cells. Thus, too much Potassium in a meal (relative to other food) will spike the Potassium concentration and trigger tinnitus. So, you follow a diet that moderates the amount of Potassium you consume from food, and balance higher-Potassium foods in every meal with lower-Potassium foods.

      The second part of the protocol, the Potassium supplements, works by keeping the Potassium levels more even throughout the day. Perhaps because they are metabolized differently than the Potassium in the food you consume, which gets put into your bloodstream when you digest.

      Like I said, this is purely a guess. I'm going on four years of success with this program, so there's no question it works for me. I stumbled on the formula, I did not get there by figuring out that eating low Potassium food while taking Potassium supplements would work.

      (Based on the information about the success of Potassium-channel-targeting drugs, I decided to try supplementing with Potassium pills. It worked immediately. Then, when I had some days when the tinnitus came back, I looked at my diet and saw that bad days were brought on by a high-Potassium meal the day before. So then I tried just doing a moderated-Potassium diet--but that did not work. So I went back to taking the Potassium pills, AND moderated the Potassium in the diet, and bingo. That was the winning formula. The final piece was discovering that you need to balance high Potassium with low Potassium foods within each meal.)

      I come back to saying: this works right away if it works for you. (More specifically, it works the day after you eat and supplement according to the protocol.) So try it, make a point of putting lots of low Potassium foods in your meals for a couple days, even if that's not the diet you usually follow, while also taking the Potassium supplements. (Like I've said, unfortunately, reliably low Potassium foods tend to be refined starches and sugars.). If it works for you, you can then experiment with trying to tailor the program more closely to the kind of diet you prefer. You might find an acceptable balance between getting some welcome reduction in the tinnitus, while not sacrificing too much of your other dietary goals. You can read above how I've managed it with the Carbohydrate Addicts' Diet.
       
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    18. twa
      Fine

      twa Member Benefactor

      Location:
      US
      Tinnitus Since:
      2017- mild /Sept. 2020-moderate
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      meds/acoustic trauma
      So I eat a lot of Potassium rich foods. I eat avocados almost every meal and they are high in Potassium. So is coconut and spinach, there are staples in the Paleo Diet. Is the goal to reduce Potassium rich foods and just add Potassium supplements? Have you calculated how many mg of potassium you eat in a day?
       
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    19. Louise L

      Louise L Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2014
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      unknown
      Hi Everyone,

      New member here! Still trying to solve the ever present tinnitus. There seems so much conflicting advice. Drink coffee/ don’t drink coffee... tea.. etc. But I’m thinking of giving this potassium route a try. Reason is, I came here in desperation again to see if there was anything else I could try or new advice/miracle cure!

      So I checked the potassium levels of food, drinks and seasonings I regularly use and it was shockingly off the charts! My problem is that starches and glutens cause IBS with me. At this rate I will be living on fresh air as an Atkins-style diet keeps me IBS free. So it’s a toss-up... tinnitus or IBS!

      Today my tinnitus is again sky high ( like a high-pitched loud constant hiss) sometimes it kicks up a gear too, and when it happens it is quite noticeable. It sometimes wakes me at night too, like an electric power drill in my head that makes me want to cry with the noise.

      So having read the success that Sharman has had I’m prepared to give her recommendations a go. I’ll order some potassium supplements too. Like others here I cannot tolerate Melatonin. I feature in 5 star horror films in my dreams in full colour if I took even a quarter of a tablet. I would love to be able to tolerate it as it appears to help some, I’ll report back after a week .
       
      • Like Like x 1
    20. Louise L

      Louise L Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      2014
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      unknown
      Just giving some feedback on my experience trying this Potassium protocol.

      Well it took a few days. I kept a chart of my tinnitus levels and it went from a 9 on Tuesday, when I was desperate to try anything, to a 1 or even 0 in my left ear on Sunday and I felt really happy that something might be working.

      I think it is imperative that, as Sharman explained, you check the Potassium levels of food as yesterday I had salmon, and dark brown molasses sugar in a cake, both high in Potassium (I realised that this morning as I sit with tinnitus again and checked the Potassium in my dinner yesterday). So I will start again today and vow to check the Potassium from food before I eat it. I think the tip to keep portions small a good one too as I could have had some salmon, just a smaller portion.

      I already follow intermittent fasting so one meal a day isn’t a problem, but because I am long term Atkins / low carb I had this crazy thought that perhaps my brain is calling out for more glucose. So I added a teaspoon of sugar to my coffee a couple of times during the day and I think that also helped lower the tinnitus.

      I didn’t have the Magnesium oil so supplemented with tablets. I also took Zinc (as in one clinical trial they found tinnitus sufferers were low in Zinc), B12 and Brewer’s yeast.

      I also removed added salt on foods.

      I shall wait another week and let you know how I get on.
       
      • Helpful Helpful x 2
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