Potassium Content of Foods
Potassium is a mineral found in many different foods, including whole grains, fruits, vegetables, milk, dried beans, and peas. Potassium helps maintain normal blood pressure and also helps muscles, including the heart, to contract properly.
Reasons to Follow a Low-potassium Diet
Your doctor may recommend following a low-potassium diet if you have kidney problems or are taking certain medications. If you have kidney problems, excess potassium can build up to dangerous levels in your blood. This can lead to muscle weakness or
Reasons to Follow a High-potassium Diet
When combined with a low-sodium diet, a diet high in potassium can help lower
high blood pressure
. This can help lower the risk of
and other complications of high blood pressure. However, you should not follow a high-potassium diet without first checking with your doctor.
The following foods contain more than 200 milligrams of potassium per serving and are therefore considered to be high in potassium.
- Dried fruits
- Grapefruit juice
- Honeydew melon
- Orange juice
- Pomegranate juice
- Prune juice
- Acorn squash
- Bamboo shoots
- Baked beans
- Butternut squash
- Black beans
- Brussels sprouts
- Chinese cabbage
- Dried beans and peas
- Greens, except kale
- Hubbard squash
- Mushrooms, canned
- Potatoes, white and sweet
- Refried beans
- Spinach, cooked
- Tomatoes, tomato products
- Vegetable juices
- Bran/Bran Products
- Milk, all types
- Nutritional supplements
- Nuts and seeds
- Peanut butter
- Salt substitutes
- Salt free broth
The following foods are considered to be low in potassium. Realize, however, that eating more than one serving of any of these foods can make it a high-potassium food.
- Apple juice
- Apple sauce
- Fruit cocktail
- Grape juice
- Mushrooms, fresh
- Water chestnuts
- Bread and bread products (*not whole grains)
American Society for Nutrition
Eat Right—Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics
Dietitians of Canada
The Kidney Foundation of Canada
Hyperkalemia. EBSCO DynaMed Plus website. Available at: http://www.dynamed.com/topics/dmp~AN~T115641/Hyperkalemia. Updated June 13, 2016. Accessed July 20, 2017.
Hypokalemia. EBSCO DynaMed Plus website. Available at: http://www.dynamed.com/topics/dmp~AN~T115951/Hypokalemia. Updated September 17, 2015. Accessed July 20, 2017.
Kidney disease: eating a safe amount of potassium. US Department of Veterans Affairs website. Available at:
http://www.veteranshealthlibrary.org/RelatedItems/142,83182%5FVA. Accessed July 20, 2017.
Kidney disease: High- and moderate-potassium foods. Eat Right—Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics website. Available at:http://www.eatright.org/resource/health/diseases-and-conditions/kidney-disease/kidney-disease-high-and-low-potassium-foods. Updated March 23, 2017. Accessed July 20, 2017.
Potassium and your CKD diet. National Kidney Foundation website. Available at:
https://www.kidney.org/atoz/content/potassium. Accessed July 20, 2017.
What is potassium? Eat Right—American Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics website. Available at: http://www.eatright.org/resource/food/vitamins-and-supplements/types-of-vitamins-and-nutrients/potassium. Updated February 3, 2014. Accessed July 20, 2017.