Foods Rich in Potassium

Do you know potassium has a very crucial role to play in the proper functioning of the body? There are some food items that are sources of potassium. Here are details of food items rich in Potassium
| Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Potassium is an important mineral that is required by the human body in certain proportions. This mineral helps to regulate the blood pressure and also maintains the proper functioning of the heart, kidney and other organs in the body. Potassium is very important for people suffering from hypertension and studies have indicated that the right amount of potassium can reduce the possibility of a stroke. This mineral is extremely crucial for functioning of the nerves too. It is responsible for regulating the nutrient transfer in the cells and this facilitates in generation of energy in the muscles. Potassium is also responsible for eliminating the waste from the body and helps in healing injuries and controlling any convulsions and even headaches and migraines. Potassium in right proportions is also crucial for the proper functioning of the pancreas. This mineral prevents increased acidity and acts as an alkalizing agent thereby keeping the correct acid alkaline proportion in the tissues and blood. When people experience low potassium levels or potassium deficiency as it is called it results in weakness, anxiety, fatigue and irregularity in heart beats. This condition of potassium deficiency is called Hypokalemia.

Increased consumption of coffee, sugar, alcohol and also diuretics can result in reduction in potassium.The absorption of potassium occurs within the small intestine and around 90 percent of this mineral is released through the urine. Whenever there is increased potassium loss high amounts of this mineral can be found in the urine. On an average a healthy adult will have around 120 g of potassium and potassium chloride of around 245 g. The monthly level of blood potassium in a healthy adult is usually within 3.5-5.0. Some potassium supplements are also available in the market but with the right diet you can easily get the required potassium levels without taking any form of supplements. These supplements are also notorious for causing ulcers on occasions and therefore they are best avoided.

The foods rich in potassium include orange juice, bananas, spinach, cantaloupe, sweet potatoes, winter squash and tomato puree among others.

Other items rich in potassium include:

  • Dry fruits like raisins, apricots, dates and prunes
  • Fruits like strawberries, watermelon, sweet lime, mango, kiwi, papaya, nectarine, pomegranate and prunes
  • Vegetables such as mushrooms, cucumber, cabbage, beets, cauliflower, peas, lotus stems, artichoke, bamboo shoots, refried beans, black beans, pumpkin and also sword beans
  • Canned juices including apricot, prune and grapefruit
  • Fresh meat including poultry and fish
  • Pulses such as cow peas, red gram, black gram and green gram
  • Other items that have potassium in rich proportions include chard, squash, brussel sprouts, turmeric, and broccoli and egg plant.

Here is a list of food items rich in potassium with the serving details and the potassium content

Item

Item Serving

Potassium (mg)

Bananas (Raw)

1 cup

594

Brussel sprouts (cooked)

1 cup

504

Apricots (dried)

10 halves

407

Cantaloupe

1 cup

494

Avocados (Raw)

1 ounce

180

Lima beans

1 cup

955

Potatoes (baked)

1

1081

Kiwi fruit (Raw)

1 medium

252

Dates (dry)

5

271

Spinach (cooked)

1 cup

839

Winter squash

1 cup

896

Figs (dry)

2

271

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