Potassium-Rich Diet: Know Its Role In Maintaining Health
- Tavishi Dogra
Updated : January 20, 2022 05:01 IST
An adequate amount of potassium, i.e. a potassium-rich diet, is essential for various body organs to function correctly.
It is necessary to have enough minerals like potassium for the proper functioning of various organs, cells and tissues of the body. It is also a kind of electrolyte that binds together with sodium, chloride and magnesium, maintaining the conduction of electricity in the body. Potassium is essential for proper heart and muscle functioning, playing a vital role in bone contraction and digestion. The excess of potassium in the body is called hyperkalemia, and the deficiency of potassium is called hypokalemia. Diarrhoea, vomiting, excessive sweating, malnutrition and diuretics cause deficiency of potassium in the body. The potassium deficiency increases the risk of high blood pressure (hypertension), stroke, heart disease, etc. Hence, to maintain a balanced amount of potassium in the body, one must depend on sodium and magnesium.
Importance of a diet rich in potassium
Many people recover from potassium deficiency with the help of a diet rich in certain fruits and vegetables such as potatoes, tomatoes, cucumbers, cabbage, cauliflower, capsicum and eggplant. In addition, potassium is also found in whole grains, meat, fish, milk and poultry products etc.
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Many potassium supplements are also available in the market, such as potassium acetate, potassium bicarbonate, potassium citrate, potassium chloride, potassium gluconate etc. It is available in tablets, capsules, liquid and powder form. In addition, potassium is also abundant in multivitamin tablets and capsules.
- Potassium supplements should not be given to children or taken by anyone without a doctor's advice.
- Taking potassium supplements in high amounts may also increase the risk of muscle weakness, slow heart rate, etc.
- In addition, people suffering from hyperkalemia and kidney disease should not take potassium supplements at all.
Disclaimer: It is essential to consult a doctor before taking a potassium supplement because it can cause several side effects, such as diarrhoea, abdominal discomfort, nausea, etc.