Most Europeans do not get enough of this essential mineral in their diet. Adding more of the following potassium-rich foods may help.
Beyond chemists, athletes, and people with high blood pressure, most people don’t really think about potassium, a mineral you probably last heard about while learning about the periodic table in chemistry class (where its abbreviation is the letter K).
However, potassium plays a vital role in health. It helps regulate fluid levels in the body, and contributes to muscle function and the proper functioning of the nervous system, among other functions. It also plays a major role in cardiovascular health. Potassium is necessary to maintain normal blood pressure and keep your heart beating regularly. Potassium lowers blood pressure in people with high blood pressure and may reduce the risk of stroke.
To respect the recommended daily intake of potassium, you must re-evaluate your diet. Potassium comes from the different foods we eat, especially fruits and vegetables. And yes, that includes bananas, which contain 422 mg per medium-sized fruit. However, a food must contain 20% or more of the recommended daily value, or 940 mg per serving, to be considered high in potassium.
We’ve rounded up 10 more colorful, delicious, and potassium-rich foods to add to your diet, and made preparation suggestions that will keep you coming back for more.
1 acorn squash
There are many types of squash that you can find in season, no matter what time of year it is. This round winter variety, with green skin and orange flesh, is rich in fiber, vitamins and minerals, especially potassium. One cup of cooked acorn squash contains 896 mg.
It has a slightly sweet flavor that is enhanced by roasting. Cut them in half, remove the seeds, cut them into rings and toast them with a little salt, pepper and brown sugar. It gets so tender and sweet, kids will love it, and they can eat it like a slice of watermelon!
2 dried tomatoes
Fresh tomatoes have the right amount of potassium (one medium tomato has 292 mg), and you’ll get more benefits with more concentrated forms of tomatoes, like tomato paste (162 mg per tablespoon) or tomato sauce (728 mg). per cup). But sun-dried tomatoes beat 925 mg of potassium per half-cup serving, or 35 percent of the recommended amount for adult women. That’s not all they can offer: Sun-dried tomatoes are high in fiber, with over 6 grams per cup, vitamin C, and even protein. You can find them plain or packed in heart-healthy olive oil, both of which make a delicious addition to salads, sandwiches, or pizza. You can also chop it up and add it to pesto sauces or sauces.
3 red beans
Beans are a healthy addition to your diet as they are a good source of plant-based protein and fiber. One cup of this kidney-shaped strain provides 713 mg of potassium. You can buy them dried or canned, but if you choose the latter, be sure to drain and rinse them before using them, and beans and other types of beans are great in soups and chili.
Bananas tend to get all the credit when it comes to potassium-rich fruits, but one small kiwi contains roughly the same amount of potassium, or 215 milligrams, as a whole banana. Other fruits that should be on your shopping list: Oranges, including juice. One cup of kiwi is more than the average banana with 427 milligrams. Its high water content also means that kiwi is highly hydrating and its orange color indicates the presence of beta-carotene, a plant pigment with antioxidant properties. Fruit salad, anyone?
This creamy, green-pulp fruit is not only rich in fiber and heart-healthy fats, but also contains 690 mg of potassium. So it is twice as good for your heart. Incorporating healthy monounsaturated fats into your diet via avocado may benefit your heart by increasing “good” levels of high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol. Avocados are so versatile that you can incorporate them into any meal of the day. In addition to crushing them to make toast and guacamole, you can add slices to sandwiches (use them in place of butter or mayonnaise).
There are plenty of reasons to eat more of this lean protein, and here’s another reason to add it to the list. Many species are an excellent source of potassium. Some fish (such as wild salmon, some types of tuna, halibut, trout, and cod) are better sources than others. If you don’t like saltwater fish, red meat (including lean beef), chicken, and turkey also provide good amounts of potassium.
Potatoes have a poor nutritional reputation, but it’s usually because of the way they’re prepared (fried potatoes or French fries in oil, sour cream, and butter). Still, a staple potato is a nutritional standard, especially when it comes to potassium. One medium potato contains approximately 900 mg of this nutrient, while other varieties (red, yellow, and even sweet potatoes) contain 400 mg and more. These starches are also a good source of fiber (leave the skin to get the most out of these satiating nutrients), vitamin C and iron. For a healthy way to eat potatoes, try steaming them and mashing them with a little chicken broth to give them flavor, roasting them in olive oil and herbs, or baking them in the oven.
8 dairy products
Although fruits and vegetables are among the best dietary sources of potassium, dairy products can also add this mineral to your diet. A cup of whole milk contains more than 350 mg of potassium, while the same amount of skimmed milk contains more than 400 mg. (In general, the lower the fat content in milk, the higher the potassium content.) On the other hand, a cup of fat-free Greek yogurt contains approximately 350 mg.
9 dark green leaves
Among the best sources of potassium are dark leafy greens like spinach, which when cooked contain 1,180 mg per cup. Swiss chard comes next with about 1,000 mg per cup cooked, and even Chinese cabbage has about 445 mg per cup when cooked. All of these foods contain some potassium even when eaten raw, but larger amounts when cooked.
10 dried fruits
Fresh fruits and vegetables are your best bets, but when they’re not in season, dried fruits are a good second choice for a potassium-rich snack. Dried fruits concentrate all their nutrients, including potassium. However, it also focuses on sugar. So be sure to check labels if you’re watching the amount of sugary products you’re consuming, and avoid types with added sugars. Dried apricots give you about 750 mg per half cup. Dried prunes and raisins are other good options. They make a great snack, especially with nuts in dried fruit mixes, but you can also use them to add a little sweetness to your salads.