Did you know that 98% of Americans do NOT consume enough potassium in their diet?
Potassium is vital for relaxation of blood vessels, muscle strength, nerve functions, and a healthy cardiovascular system.
When you have a potassium deficiency your blood vessels can become constricted and heighten your blood pressure level. You might experience muscle aches and even spasms, that's because there is not enough potassium to smooth muscle contraction.
If your heart suddenly pounds, or your heart rate speeds up for no apparent reason, low potassium level can be a reason for that too.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) dietary guidelines recommends a daily potassium intake of 4,700 mg.
The average potassium consumption a day for most Americans is only 2,500 mg.
Additionally, when you consume more sodium your body will try to excrete more potassium.
This is why high salt intake leads to high blood pressure. So, not only do you need to have a potassium-rich diet, you also need to limit your salt intake in order to ensure you are consuming enough potassium every day.References:
- FDA: "Changes to the Nutrition Facts label."
- American Heart Association: "A primer on potassium," "How potassium can help control high blood pressure."
- Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics: "What is potassium?"
- National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases: "Potassium: Tips for people with chronic kidney disease," "Diet and lifestyle changes."
- National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute: "Living with the DASH eating plan."