Dangers Of Having Low Potassium It May Cause Osteoporosis and Stroke

Potassium is an important electrolyte and the third most abundant mineral in the body.

Potassium is the main compound that interacts with sodium to perform a number of important functions every single day, especially balancing fluids and mineral levels within the body. It’s why having low potassium levels can be so dangerous.

As you lose electrolytes in your sweat, you should always obtain a source of these important minerals during or after a bout of intense physical activity.

Symptoms of Potassium deficiency

Potassium deficiency is not uncommon, but it often not harmless. It is most common among the elderly, whose kidneys struggle to regulate potassium levels, those on diuretics, or those with eating disorders, such as bulimia. Potassium deficiency symptoms include:

* severe headaches
* dehydration
* heart palpitations
* swelling of glands and tissues.
* constant fatigue
* high blood pressure
* cramps
* faint or dizzy
* rapid heart rate
* constipation

For your body to be healthy, it's important that this delicate balance be maintained. Any disruption in the balance can have a cascading effect, with some more severe than others. To prevent any disruption or disturbance, it is vital to maintain a healthy diet. When you make sure to get the daily recommended total for potassium and stay below the daily recommend amount of sodium.

The best way to maintain a healthy body is to have a nutrient-rich, well-balanced diet, while avoiding added sugars, junk foods, fats, and excessive carbohydrates.

Sources of Potassium

1) Banana
Bananas are well-known for being a potassium source and they are a good one, but they also relatively high in sugar and carbs. That’s why I recommend bananas as a quick source of energy before a workout or a post-workout nutrient-rich recovery food to help repair muscle and balance water retention. Exercising, especially an intense workout, is one of the major ways that your potassium levels can get drained so that’s why it’s crucial to consume potassium-rich foods like bananas. Scientific research has also shown that bananas are rich in dopamine, a major mood-enhancing hormone.

Avocado is definitely one of my favorite
potassium-rich foods. A 2013 study published in the Nutrition Journal revealed epidemiological data from 2001 to 2008 that describes the effects of avocado consumption on metabolic disease risk factors. Overall, they found that people who ate avocados tended to have healthier diets overall as well as an increased nutrient intake and a decreased likelihood of developing metabolic syndrome.

Not only is spinach a potassium-rich food, scientific research has shown that spinach contains plant chloroplast glycoglycerolipids, which are believed to act as cancer fighting agents. Add just one cup of spinach to your day and you’ll get a respectable 540 mg (11% DV) of potassium!

4) Sweet potato
A medium baked sweet potato has 542 mg (12% DV) of potassium. These tubers are also rich in vitamin A and are also high in beta-carotene, vitamin C and vitamin B6.  Plus sweet potatoes have been shown in scientific animal research to exhibit anti-ulcer activity and are likely helpful in the successful treatment of peptic ulcers.

5) Watermelon
Chomp down two refreshing watermelon wedges and you’ll get 641 mg (14% DV) of potassium. It’s also a great source of lycopene, a naturally occurring plant pigment that’s been linked to a reduced risk of certain cancers.

6) Beets
A cup of cooked, sliced beets delivers 518 mg (11% DV) of potassium. Beets have anti-cancer fighting properties and are a good way to help eliminate toxins from your body.

7) Pomegranate
Pomegranate seeds and its juice are awesome fruit sources of potassium. They’re also loaded with fiber, vitamin C and vitamin K amongst other nutrients. In addition this potassium-rich food list, the pomegranate also lands on other lists like the top 10 aphrodisiac foods due to its ability to reduce cortisol levels in the body. Pomegranate juice has also been found to be the healthiest fruit juice in the world.

8) Coconut Water
Looking for more potassium-rich foods that come in liquid form? I like including coconut water on this list because when you choose well, you have a beverage option that is high in electrolytes like potassium, but not too high in sugar or calories. Coconut water has even been used in emergency situations as an IV hydration fluid.

9) White Beans
White beans might be the best source of potassium in the grocery store: A single cup has 1189 mg. That’s a full quarter of what you need every day. That same 1-cup serving also packs a whopping 20 g of protein and 13 g of fiber. According to the Mayo Clinic, consuming fiber-rich foods like white beans help to lower your risk of diabetes and heart disease. High fiber diets also encourage a healthy waistline.

10) Acorn squash
Acorn squash is a vegetable source of potassium that really should be more popular than it is because it also contains high levels of antioxidants. Most impressively are the carotenoids contained in just one serving of acorn squash. This type of antioxidant is well-known for helping prevent and fight various types of cancer, including skin, breast, lung and prostate cancer.

Benefits of Potassium-Rich Foods

1. Boost Heart Health
One thing a healthy heart definitely does is beat as it should. I’m talking about your heart rhythm, and potassium plays a direct role in making sure that rhythm is healthy and as it should be. If you’re having trouble with your heart rhythm, a potassium deficiency could easily play a role.

2. Decrease Cramps
One of the main benefits of consuming high-potassium foods is decreased muscle cramping and improved muscle strength.  Muscle weakness, muscle aches and muscle cramps are common side effects of low potassium levels.  This can happen if an athlete becomes dehydrated and doesn’t consume enough potassium-rich foods before and after exercise.

3. Reduce Risk of Stroke
Several observational studies have found that those with high potassium levels experience a lower risk of stroke. The risk of ischemic stroke in particular is lower in high potassium consumers. The positive relationship between increased potassium intake and decreased stroke risk is believed to be from dietary sources rather than supplements, which do not appear to provide the same positive effect.

4. Alleviate High Blood Pressure (Hypertension)
Studies show that a diet high in potassium, especially potassium from fruits and vegetables, lowers blood pressure. This is especially true if the increase in potassium foods is not accompanied by an increase in high-sodium foods. One group that shouldn’t aim too high with potassium intake is people with kidney problems.

5. Lower Cellulite Appearance
One of the main causative factors of cellulite buildup is fluid retention. Most people consume far too much sodium and not near enough potassium. Sodium brings nutrients into your cells where potassium helps flush excess waste out of your cells. For this reason, if you reduce sodium intake and start consuming potassium-rich foods, you may reduce the appearance of cellulite.

6. Osteoporosis Protection
Research has found a direct relationship between increased bone density and increased intake of dietary potassium. Citrate and bicarbonate are two potassium salts that are naturally found in potassium-rich fruit and vegetables, and a recent study reveals that these potassium salts can actually improve the health of your bones and prevent osteoporosis.

Dangers Of Having Low Potassium It May Cause Osteoporosis and Stroke Dangers Of Having Low Potassium It May Cause Osteoporosis and Stroke Reviewed by LVS Staff on 10:04 PM Rating: 5
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