People often forget or just simply don’t know that potassium is very vital to the human body. In fact, it helps your heart beat every day because it’s an electrolyte. It also helps our muscles and bones move, kidney’s to filter and nerves to fire. This is a crucial mineral to have in our daily diet.
Potassium is in many foods including all meats, some fish and many fruits and vegetables. Whole grains and dairy products are also a good source of potassium. A healthy way to maintain a potassium-rich diet is to eat lots of fruits and vegetables. The USDA’s “Dietary Guidelines for Americans” and “National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference” says the average adult should have 4,700 mg of potassium daily. Most multivitamins contain the amount of potassium needed.
Do not take potassium supplements without speaking with a physician first. Too much potassium, known as hyperkalemia, can cause nausea or an irregular heartbeat. Not enough potassium, hypokalemia, can cause weakness, stomach disturbances, muscle cramps and heart failure. High levels of sodium often trigger higher needs for potassium. Some warning signs of potassium deficiency include diarrhea, vomiting, excessive sweating, malnutrition, Crohn’s disease and a heart medication called loop diuretics.
Good sources of potassium include:
• Sweet potatoes
• Whole Milk