Why does potassium matter? 5 potassium-rich foods
Potassium is an important mineral that many of us simply aren’t getting enough of. With potassium being the third most abundant mineral found in the body, it’s essential that we focus on how we can get enough from plant-based foods. Plus, it’s estimated that about 98% of Americans just aren’t getting enough.
We’re breaking down why getting enough potassium matters, and five of the most impressive potassium-rich plant-based foods to supercharge your diet.
Why Does Potassium Matter?
First, let’s talk about why potassium is important. Potassium is a mineral that helps support health in a variety of ways. Here are just a handful of reasons to make sure you are getting enough potassium in your diet.
- Potassium helps support fluid balance in the body.
- Getting enough potassium is important for helping move both waste as well as nutrients in and out of our body cells.
- We need enough potassium to support normal muscle contractions.
- Potassium plays an important role in helping our hearts beat regularly.
- Potassium can also help support healthy blood pressure by reducing the negative effect sodium can have on blood pressure readings.
How Much Potassium Do You Need Each Day?
So, how much potassium do we really need each day? It’s recommended to aim to get about 4,700 mg of potassium each day, and the best way to do this is through food. Note-taking a potassium supplement is generally not recommended.
Plus, a food first approach is always the best way to make sure that you are getting easily absorbable vitamins and minerals in your diet that your body can use.
The great news is that there are plenty of plant-based foods that can help give you a potassium boost while also supporting overall health.
5 Plant-based Potassium-Rich Foods:
#1 Dark Leafy Greens: It’s always a good idea to eat your greens, and they happen to be an excellent source of potassium as well. Try tossing a handful of dark leafy greens into your smoothies, or try one of Veestro’s plant-based meals like the Mushrooms Risotto which packs in potassium from potassium-rich kale.
#2 Bananas: One of the most well-known potassium-rich foods, bananas are a winner when it comes to boosting the potassium in your diet. In one medium-sized banana, you will pack in about 422 mg of potassium!
#3 Avocados: Here’s just one more reason to enjoy this healthy fat. One medium-sized avocado provides about 20% of the recommended daily intake for potassium, so go ahead and enjoy that sliced avocado in your salad. Not only will you add a healthy dose of potassium, but avocados are the perfect healthy fat, rich in fiber and antioxidants to keep you healthy.
#4 Beets: Beets are incredibly nutritious, and they certainly check off the potassium box when it comes to high potassium foods. One cup of beets will provide you with about 518 mg of potassium, in addition to folate and antioxidants to help ward off inflammation. You can add beets to a salad, or try making a homemade veggie burger with beets, sweet potatoes, and quinoa.
#5 White Beans: Beans are a staple protein plant-based food pick, and they also happen to be a great source of potassium. In just one cup of white beans, you will get about 829 mg of potassium. And, white beans are also loaded with dietary fiber to help keep you full while keeping your digestive system happy. So, what’s not to love? Try adding more white beans to your plant-based diet. They are an incredibly nutrient-dense plant-based food that will fit well into any balanced diet.
Power to More Plant-Based Potassium-Rich Foods
The bottom line is that potassium is important. We need it for a variety of body functions. From helping to support a regular heart rhythm to supporting normal muscle contractions, getting enough potassium is important. However, it’s advised to get your potassium from food sources, and not supplements. This is where these five plant-based foods come in.
Supercharge your plant-based diet with these foods to help support optimal potassium levels while also supporting optimal health.