Have you ever thought much about it beyond, “The thing that’s in bananas that’s good for you or whatever?” 🍌 Have you ever asked yourself, “How do I get enough potassium?”
I ask because I certainly hadn’t until recently, when I was looking up, out of curiosity, how much potassium you’re supposed to get in a day.
It turns out, 3,500 mg is the LOW recommendation, and some healthcare professionals recommend 4,700!! That sounded like quite a bit to me…and it really is. I looked up how many milligrams of potassium are in a single banana…about 400 mg.
“Wait, WHAT?” I thought. “That means you’d have to eat 9 – 12 bananas to get enough potassium every day!! So is everybody potassium deficient, or did nutritionists just set an unrealistic guideline, or what?”
Well, the first thought was correct. the average person only gets about 1,700 mg a day. In fact… if your mind wasn’t blown already, thinking, “This is bananas!” (sorry 😆), it turns out that only 2% of North Americans are getting enough potassium!!
This is wild when you compare it to other nutrients that you commonly hear about people being deficient in. Examples: calcium, vitamin D, iron? A recent study showed that most North Americans get enough calcium, 2/3 get enough vitamin D, and 80% get enough iron. And almost nobody is lacking in vitamin C. And yet these are the vitamins you’re always hearing about…so why aren’t we taking about potassium??
Today I’m making it my mission to start the convo on the Potassium Problem! (OK, maybe not STARTING it 😉)
The reason it’s so important to get enough potassium is, it’s an electrolyte. That means it reacts with water (which, remember, is over 60% of what your body is made of) and conducts ELECTRICITY…which I know sounds “shocking,” but it’s how your neurons do their job and send impulses throughout your body, so, super important for every single thing you do!!
If your electrolytes are imbalanced, than your body’s communication system is out of whack. So, unsurprisingly, a high potassium diet lowers your blood pressure and reduces stroke risk. Also, 80% of your potassium is in the MUSCLES, so if you want to get stronger you’d better be eating those bananas! How do you think monkeys swing from trees?? 🐒
OK, but what if you don’t like bananas?
Fear not, because some veggies and fish have MORE potassium than bananas. For example, you’re probably not too into beet greens, but a cup of them cooked clocks in at almost a whole gram of potassium!
For some more normal stuff, a cup of:
- pinto beans is ~650 mg
- (white) potatoes is ~550 mg
- grilled portobello mushrooms is ~500 mg
- spinach and kale is ~450 mg
- a fillet of salmon is about 400mg depending on the thickness
- one avocado is almost 500 mg!
Yes, that’s right, avocados vs. bananas, avocados win here!! I definitely didn’t know that!
So now I’m way curious… did any of you guys already know that basically everybody is extremely potassium deficient?
Anyway, I hope I made you aware and now you’re saying “potassi-YUM”…OK, I’m running away now! 😉😉
Also, if you want an easy high-potassium recipe, check out how I MAKE MY SMOOTHIE BOWLS:
⭐️HOW I MAKE MY SMOOTHIE BOWLS⭐️Feel free to SHARE this or TAG a friend! ✔️unsweetened cashew milk✔️water✔️chocolate Shakeology ✔️spinach✔️mct oil ✔️frozen strawberries ✔️frozen blueberries ✔️avocado Topped with:✔️chia seeds✔️walnuts ✔️almonds✔️granola✔️banana ✔️dark chocolate flakes ✔️chopped up Fiber One brownie (not usual but I wanted an extra chocolate treat)
Posted by Morgan Rieger on Monday, February 20, 2017