Potassium is one of most important minerals your body should take daily. This has a very great role in improving your health and this is why experiencing in low of potassium can lead to many types of illnesses such as stroke and high blood pressure. So you should make sure that your daily meals include the right amount of potassium, which should be 100 mg as the minimum intake to give your body what it needs. You need this mineral in maintaining the health of your muscle, brain, heart, kidney and many other organs.
Due to its effectiveness in keeping your important body organs work properly, there are many other benefits that you can get from consuming foods with potassium daily.
1. Keeping Your Muscles Healthy
Weak muscles will make you feel fatigued easily when doing your activities. Maintaining the mass of your muscle can be done by getting enough potassium intake. It doesn’t have to be about building your lean muscle because even if you just want your muscle to be healthy, potassium is needed. Weak muscle can influence your metabolism. Eat some raisins, avocados and bananas daily to keep filling your body with potassium and maintaining your muscle. The cells of the muscles need to be repaired to make them work more efficient and potassium can help you do that.
2. Improve Your Brain Function
The function of your brain can be well improved and maintained by taking potassium 3.5 grams each day. Get more foods with potassium and cut down the amount of processed foods in your daily meals to make your brain healthier. By consuming potassium, your brain will get enough oxygen and it allows the brain to work more effective. Low potassium will make the oxygen in the brain low as well. You might not feel it at first that your brain is not in a good condition, but when it continues, you can see the difference. So it is better to prevent such thing happens rather than trying to experience how it is.
3. Getting Your Bones Stronger
When it is about bone density, calcium is always the mostly mentioned. However, calcium only will not work effectively in making your bone stronger. You need the other kind of mineral, which is the potassium. A combination of calcium and potassium will end up with healthier, stronger bones. People tend to underestimate the health of their bones until they are getting older and their bones are not working as they used to be. When that time comes, they will start looking for things to get the fixed. It is better to do some prevention rather than recovering your bones later. Potassium should be combined with calcium, manganese and other kinds of important minerals to give your bones more nutrition. Your bone density needs the right minerals to keep it hard and strong.
4. Lowering Heart Problems
Heart disease might occur because of potassium deficiency. If you want to prevent it from happening or you are already diagnosed with heart disease, then consuming potassium can be one of the effective solutions. Potassium can low your blood pressure, which means the cardiovascular system can be more relaxed instead of straining. When the heart is relaxed, it can work better for your body. Surely there should be a good combination of exercises and potassium intake to get your heart healthy and functional. A simple exercise like walking will be useful for your heart health and you can do this just every day.
5. Reducing Stress
Feeling stressful is normal, but it shouldn’t be too much or you might be feeling depressed as it is increasing. If you feel that you have got enough stress that influences your emotion, take some foods with potassium like banana to handle it. Sometimes low potassium in your body can trigger stress and you just don’t realize it. There are surely many things that can make you feeling stressful, but at least you can try to handle it for feeling better. Enough amount of potassium intake is necessary because there are many cells in your body need them. If they are not enough, they can’t accommodate all the body cells and it can also lead to stress. As it is helpful in lowering your blood pressure, it can make cut down your stress and get you more relaxed. Healthy blood pressure is very important for reducing stress and potassium can handle it well. Moreover, potassium is effective in making your muscles relaxed to prevent and tense that you experience when you are feeling stress.
6. Balancing Your Fluid
If you want to get enough fluid in your body, it’s easy. Just drink enough water and done. However, are you sure the fluid is balanced? Balancing your electrolytes will help your bloodstream healthy. Not only potassium, but there are many kinds of minerals that can be used to maintain your electrolytes balance. Combining calcium and potassium will end up with a great balance of your electrolytes. Drink enough water daily and pay attention to your sodium and potassium intake. Water is the most important thing for balancing your fluid and it should be supported with beneficial minerals.
7. Increasing Metabolism
Metabolism or immune system is very important to be increased since it helps your body protected from many things causing diseases and illnesses. Having problems with your metabolism means that your risk in getting contact with diseases becomes bigger. Metabolism effectiveness can increase and decrease depending on what you eat. Not only in maintaining your health, metabolism will also influence your weight. Mostly it is hard for those with low metabolism to lose their weights compared to those with high metabolism. One of the reasons why your metabolism is low is you are lacking of potassium. Although this is not the only important mineral for increasing metabolism, this is very important to include in your daily intake. Minerals and vitamins work together in your body as a team to maintain your metabolism. If one of the members is missing, the team can’t work properly in reaching the goal because each member has its own role. So if you think that you have had enough minerals, but don’t really take potassium daily, then your body still needs more nutrients to fulfill. Potassium is among of the most important minerals because its role is helping the other minerals in your body doing their jobs. So it has a very significant role that you can’t leave.
8. Improving Blood Pressure
There are many kinds of harmful diseases caused by high blood pressure and this is why having high blood pressure should be well concerned. Regular checking is one of the most appropriate preventions to see whether or not your blood pressure is high. Also, you need to eat the right foods containing potassium for supporting your high blood prevention plan. Potassium is helpful in lowering high blood pressure as long as it is completed with a healthy lifestyle. By keeping your blood pressure stabilized, you can stay away from diabetes and heart attacks. Take enough potassium and it will help your blood more relaxed, performing smooth flow in your body so that it can be stabilized, not getting higher or lower. Surely you shouldn’t depend on the potassium only because it can’t do that job along without the proper healthy diet.
9. Improving Nervous System
Nervous system works in your body by providing responses and signals to make your body communicate and relate toward things around you. This system is sometimes unrealized, so when it gets damaged, people don’t know about that. If it works well, your body will feel healthy. Taking enough potassium can make this system works properly as it has to be and it will surely provide benefits to you.
10. Keeping Your Kidney Healthy
Stabilizing your blood pressure does provide a number of benefits, not only keeping you away from deathly diseases, but also helping your kidney healthy. Taking potassium daily prevents the risk of getting kidney stone it is effective in neutralizing blood stream’s acidity. Kidney stone is usually caused by the deposition of urine calcium that creates a stone. Once the stone formed, kidney can’t perform properly. However, potassium is only effective in preventing kidney stone, not healing it. If you already had this disease, then you need to cut your potassium intake since your kidney is no longer working effectively in regulating potassium level contained in the blood stream. It can be any disease related with kidney, not only kidney stone, so checking to your doctor can be a better option.
11. Preventing Muscle Cramps
Cramps in your muscle can be a sign that you are lacking of potassium. This is mostly a sign for those who don’t really push their muscles, but they get some cramps. Muscle cramps can happen when you are using your muscle too much. Not overusing it, but getting cramps can be a sign of potassium deficiency. This condition might not be really harmful, but having no cramps is better. Consuming foods with potassium can make your muscles feel better. With its function in relaxing muscles, camps can be reduced and prevented so that you can feel more comfortable.
Foods Rich of Potassium
With those great benefits of potassium can be reaped, now you need to know what foods are containing potassium and how to include them in your daily meals. It is necessary to know what foods they are so that you can plan your meals for fulfilling your potassium need.
When you hear the word potassium, bananas can be the first thing comes in your mind. Bananas are indeed very well known as a high potassium food. You can get 400 mg of potassium just from medium-sized bananas. This is a very effective option when you need enough amount of potassium daily. Not only fulfilling your potassium need, bananas are also great in satisfying your hunger. Eating bananas will make you full without having to eat carbo. Eat it directly or make it into smoothie or desserts to give you many different options of foods using the same ingredient.
One of the potassium benefits you can experience is maintaining bone density, which can be provided by prunes. Turn them into juice and you can take about 530 mg of potassium in just ¾ of cup. Use it in your granola bars, cakes or just any snacks that you think you love to consume to take its benefits while enjoying your snacking habit. However, make sure that you add the prunes to healthy snacks to maximally get the benefits.
- Sweet Potatoes
While it is known that bananas are on top of foods with potassium list, it is actually sweet potatoes rewarded as the number one. Consuming sweet potatoes will give your body 694 mg of potassium completed with beta-carotene and fiber, which are required for your health. Also, sweet potatoes can make you full and fill your energy. You can cook it in many different ways from mashing, baking, stuffing, grilling to frying just to prevent you from feeling bored eating the same rich-in-potassium food daily.
All kinds of beans are great for your body especially your heart because they are packed with not only potassium, but also fiber. However, the highest level of potassium can be found in white beans, lentils, lima beans, split peas and kidney beans. You can take about 600 mg of potassium in just half a cup of them. So this is very interesting because you don’t have to eat too much to get enough amount of potassium.
Combining your granola with yogurt as your breakfast menu is not only simple, yet delicious, but this is also healthy. Including prunes in your granola and then completed with non-fat yogurt is perfect for starting your day. You have 579 mg of potassium plus the ones contained in prunes. So instead of having breakfast with sandwiches dressed with mayo, this is much healthier. Not only potassium, your body can also get the benefits of probiotics, which is good for your digestion.
Not fresh tomatoes, but the ones turned into sauces are packed with more potassium. Whether it is puree or paste, both of them containing high potassium with the puree is lower than the paste. Tomato paste provides 664 mg of potassium per one quarter cup while puree offers 549 mg every one half cup. If you love tomato juice, you can also get more than 400 mg of potassium. This is fun since you can enjoy your spaghetti while still getting the benefits of potassium from the sauce.
While tomato juice and sauce are higher in potassium than the fresh ones, this rule does the same with carrots. You can take more potassium by turning it into juice. Every ¾ cup of carrot juice there are more than 500 mg. your body feels healthier and your eyes also get better since carrots are excellent for your vision.
Not only packed with healthy fats, fish also provides high amount of potassium with every 3 ounce contains 500 mg of this important mineral. Make sure to pick fresh fruit it can be meaty or fatty fish depending on your taste. Include fish in your meals, not having to be daily can be beneficial for your health.
The level of potassium in milk is not high enough; it has only 382 mg in one cup. You can even get less than that if you go with whole milk. Skim milk and non-fat milk are better options since they are higher in potassium. Combine milk with bananas and yogurt for smoothies are nice healthy foods to boost your energy and start your morning.
Cook half a cup of soybeans and consume them will give you about 500 mg of potassium. This amount is only available in unprocessed soybeans. More than just providing enough potassium intake for your body, soybeans are excellent for relieving inflammation.
One more type of fruit packed with potassium is orange. You already had bananas and now you have other great option. Again, juicing is more effective in this case since it provides more potassium content. Pick oranges that can be fresh squeezed to give your body many other minerals such as calcium, vitamins and folate.
Appropriate Potassium Intake
No matter how good potassium is, you still have to concern about the maximum intake because none of minerals in this world can be safely consumed without limitation. 4,700 mg is the highest amount of potation you should take if you are healthy.
Those with certain diseases should consult it with their doctor first to check how much potassium needed. In order to get that high amount of potassium daily, grab many kinds of vegetables and fruits packed with potassium to be included in your daily meals. As have been mentioned above, there are many options to choose from and you can also use many methods of cooking to make them just in case you need some variations in your menus.