· By Jamal Ayton-Brown
Much Needed Mineral #2: What is Potassium Good For?
Don’t Underestimate Powerful Potassium
Ok, so you’ve probably heard of potassium before, particularly when it comes to bananas? But do you know why it’s so important to get it in? No? We’ve got ya!
It’s a mineral which helps regulate fluid, sends nerve signals and regulates muscle contractions, all super important if you want to live a healthy, active lifestyle.
Potassium is also important for regulating those beautiful things we call muscles. Low potassium levels in the blood can affect nerves signals as we already mentioned and this potentially weakens muscle contractions, definitely not helpful on that morning commute!
Some research has even shown that an increased intake of (you guessed it) potassium through diet has been linked with a reduction in blood pressure by increasing the loss of sodium (salt) in your pee.
Need we say any more?
Ok so… now I want some!
How can you get some potassium in your life we hear you say?
As we said up top, when thinking potassium, many people think bananas, which is correct ✔️
However, potassium can also be found in a wide range of easy to access foods such as:
- Beans and pulses
- Nuts and seeds
- Some veggies (broccoli, parsnips and brussel sprouts).
Typically, processed foods will contain less potassium than raw foods – this means consuming more fruit and vegetables!
How much good stuff do I need?
Adults (19-64 years) are recommended to have 3,500mg of potassium a day, which can be done through your daily diet of consuming a mixture of the previous foods (and shake ?) we mentioned above.
The Big jrny Take Away
Make sure you’re including plenty of fruits and vegetables, good quality meat and fish or plant foods in your to ensuring you’re getting a good amount of potassium in the body and keeping your muscles and heart healthy.
A word from jrny!
Check out the first post in our ‘Much Needed Minerals Series’, about something many women suffer deficiencies in, Iron. If you want a quick and easy way to get some Potassium in your diet, whilst combating low energy levels in females then check out our range of energy boosting shakes!
At jrny, we are made up of a team of Sports Scientists, Registered Nutritionists. We want to make sure that we’re not just putting up the pseudo-science you’d see on other sites. If any of our staff put anything on our blog that relates to your health, you can bet that it is backed by evidence-based science! It always will be. That’s our commitment to you.
Susan A. Lanham-New, Helen Lambert, Lynda Frassetto, Potassium, Advances in Nutrition, Volume 3, Issue 6, November 2012, Pages 820–821
The information in this post was adapted from information provided by Registered Associate Nutritionist Sarah Tipping. Follow her @eatingwellwithsarah.