What are potassium-rich foods?
Potassium-rich foods are naturally occurring foods that include vegetables, fruits, and drinks, which contain a substantially high amount of this mineral.
Classified as both an alkaline mineral and an electrolyte, this essential nutrient plays an important role in maintaining the electrolyte balance in the body. It also helps your heart, nerve cells, and muscle cells to function properly.
To fully understand why you should eat potassium-rich foods, read about the power of its health benefits.
The daily requirement or the recommended daily allowance (RDA) of dietary potassium for adults is 4,700 milligrams. That is the goal of how much of this mineral an adult must take per day set by the National Academy of Sciences.
But, most men and women do not consume that much of it due to an insufficient dietary intake.
Potassium supplements do help but your preference should be to get your supply of this mineral and electrolyte from foods such as vegetables, fruits, and beverages.
Sufficient intake of potassium through your diet will have benefits on your body, the most important being its benefits in maintaining your normal blood pressure
Benefits on blood pressure
The importance of a diet rich in potassium lies in the fact that the foods incorporated are highly recommended dietary inclusions to delay the onset of high blood pressure and also lower elevated blood pressure. At the same time, however, low sodium intake is also necessary.
Another reason to recommend natural sources of potassium is that an overdose from natural sources is nearly impossible. You can, therefore, not each too much of this mineral and electrolyte from your diet.
However, people who have a kidney problem or are on dialysis should be careful about how much of these foods they consume.
List of potassium-rich foods: vegetables, fruits, and beverages with their proportionate content
Here is the list of foods that will give you a good amount of this mineral and which also show their potassium content. These foods also provide other nutrients such as fiber, which adds to their value.
This list is also useful for those suffering from chronic kidney disease (CKD) and who need to lower their potassium. These are the same foods they should avoid.
Such people with CKD should not consume more than 2000 mg of potassium per day.
It is highly recommended that your supply should come from food sources of which fruits and vegetables form the top recommendations. The current daily value for potassium is 3.5 grams.
Natural food sources favorably promote acid-base metabolism, which reduces the risk of kidney stone formation and loss of bone density.
Some of these foods contain more potassium than the banana, which is so famous for its content of this mineral.
All meats (red meat and chicken)
Certain meat and animal products can help meet your needs for potassium.
However, The American Institute for Cancer Research suggests that you eat no more than 18 ounces of red meat, such as pork, beef, and lamb per week to reduce the risk of cancer.
- 100 grams of chicken meat will give you 223 mg of potassium, which is 6% of the daily value (DV).
- 100 grams of whole roasted, cured ham has 286 milligrams (8% DV).
- A three-ounce serving of bacon gives you 598 milligrams
- 3 ounces of cooked pork tenderloin contains 382 mg
- Tenderloin, top loin, top round, ribs, and shank cuts of beef contain 370 to 400 milligrams of potassium in each serving.
- A piece of lamb generally contains about 380 milligrams per serving.
Seafood and Fish
- A 3.5-ounce portion of baked flounder contains about 585 milligrams and the same amount of halibut contains about 470 milligrams.
- Shrimp, lobster, crab, and mussels contain between about 260 and 280 milligrams of potassium per 3.5-ounce serving.
- 100 grams of cooked salmon contains 384 milligrams.
- 100 grams of Sardine, Atlantic, canned in oil contains 397 milligrams.
- 100 grams of soy milk contains 118 milligrams (mg) of potassium, which is 3 % of its daily value.
- 100 grams of raw soybeans contain 1,797 mg of this electrolyte, which is 51% of its RDA.
Vegetables rich in potassium content include broccoli, peas, lima beans, tomatoes, potatoes (especially their skins), sweet potatoes, and winter squash.
- Potatoes. 100 grams of potatoes contain 421 mg of potassium, which is 12 percent of the daily value (DV). One small potato contains more than 700 milligrams. And one average-sized, whole, baked potato contains 926 milligrams with the skin or 610 milligrams without the skin.
- Sweet potatoes. 100 grams of sweet potatoes contain 337 mg, which is 9 percent of the daily value.
- Asparagus. 100 grams of Asparagus contains 202 mg of potassium, which is 5 percent of the daily value.
- Spinach. 100 grams of spinach contains 558 mg, which is 15 percent of its daily value.
- Cabbage. 100 grams of cabbage contains 170 mg, which is 4 percent of daily value.
- Green peas. 100 grams of green peas contain 244 mg, which is 6% of the daily value.
- Broccoli. 100 grams of broccoli contains 316 mg of potassium, which is 9% of DV.
- Lima beans. 100 grams contain 570 mg of this mineral and its DV is 16%.
- Tomatoes. 100 grams of red tomatoes contain 237mg, which is 6% of DV.
- Sprouts. 100 grams of sprouts contain 70 mg, which is 2 percent of the daily value
Fruits with good amounts of potassium include citrus fruits, cantaloupe, bananas, kiwi, prunes, and dried apricots.
- Bananas. 100 grams of banana flesh contains 358 mg of potassium, which is 10% of DV. One banana weighing about 118 mg contains 422mg (12% DV).
- Avocados. 100 grams of Avocado contains 485mg (14% DV). One avocado weighing 201g contains 975mg (28% DV)
- Cantaloupe Melon. 100 grams contain 267mg (8% DV)
- Pomegranate. 100 g contains 236mg (7% DV). One fruit (282g) contains 666mg (19% DV).
- Guavas. Potassium in 100g – 417mg (12% DV). One fruit (55g) contains 229mg (7% DV).
- Kiwi Fruit. 100 grams contain 316mg (9% DV). One fruit (86g) contains 272mg (8% DV).
- Dried Apricots. 100 grams contain 1,162 mg, which is 33% of DV.
Potassium in milk
The potassium content in milk depends on which type of milk you drink. Generally, the higher the fat content, the lower the amount of potassium.
- 8 ounces of whole milk offers slightly more than 320 milligrams of potassium.
- The same amount of 2 percent milk contains more than 340 milligrams.
- Skim or nonfat milk will give you more than 380 milligrams from an 8-ounce glass.
Plain low-fat yogurt contains 380 milligrams per 8-ounce or 11 percent of the daily value, and the same size serving of yogurt made with whole milk contains 420 milligrams or 12 percent of the daily value.
Since many fruits are high in potassium, fruit juices can be an excellent source of this essential mineral and electrolyte.
- A one-cup serving of canned prune juice contains 707 milligrams, making it one of the most riches beverages of potassium.
- Orange juice provides 436 to 496 milligrams per cup. Fresh-squeezed orange juice contains the most.
- Grapefruit juice provides between 378 and 405 milligrams per 1-cup serving.
Consuming vegetable juices can help with your potassium intake without too many calories since these beverages tend to be lower in calories than fruit juices.
- One cup of canned carrot juice contains 689 milligrams
- Same-sized serving of tomato juice provides 556 milligrams.
- Vegetable juice cocktail is also a rich choice with 467 milligrams per serving.
100 grams of coconut water contains 250 mg of potassium, which is 7% of the daily value.
Recommended dietary intake of potassium as per age
The Food and Nutrition Center of the Institute of Medicine recommends these dietary intakes for potassium, based on age:
- 0 to 6 months: 0.4 grams a day (g/day)
- 7 to 12 months: 0.7 g/day
Children and Adolescents
- 1 to 3 years: 3 g/day
- 4 to 8 years: 3.8 g/day
- 9 to 13 years: 4.5 g/day
- 14 to 18 years: 4.7 g/day
- Age 19 and older: 4.7 g/day
- Breastfeeding mothers need slightly higher amounts (5.1 g/day).
People who are being treated for hypokalemia need potassium supplements. They are especially recommended for people who take diuretics, which cause potassium depletion.