Potassium is one of the most important and essential dietary minerals the body needs. What does it do? It helps balance the body's pH and body fluids. It's also a critical regulator for blood pressure (it works in opposition to sodium). It's also required for normal muscle growth, nervous system and brain function. According to the Institute of Medicine, the average person should consume about 4,700 milligrams of potassium per day.
The body's potassium levels can be affected from kidney disease, diabetes, consistent vomiting as a side effect from certain medications, fluctuating hormone levels or as a side effect of certain medications.
Fruits and vegetables continue to be the richest sources of potassium. You may be getting sufficient amounts every day but for those who rely heavily on eating a Western diet, you're probably getting fewer than 5 servings of fruits and vegetables per day.
If you're interested in potassium supplements, it's important to talk to your physician first.
- Bake Potatoes: 900 milligrams
- Beet Greens: 1300 milligrams
- White Beans: 400 milligrams
- Plain Non-Fat Yogurt: 500 milligrams
- Baked Sweet Potatoes: 500 milligrams
- Halibut: 500 milligrams
- Lima Beans: 500 milligrams
- Bananas: 400 milligrams
- Prunes and Prune Juice: 700 milligrams
- Clams: 500 milligrams