The body counts on potassium. It is useful in muscle tissue, bone development, heart health and a number of other systems in the body. But, it is quite deficient in most of our daily nutrient profiles. You could be lacking the correct amount of potassium right now and not even realize it.
The Effects of Low Potassium
Are you feeling tired even when you exercise? This could be a result of hypokalemia (low potassium levels). You may also experience muscle cramps during exercise, confusion, lack of coordination and weakness. Because potassium is important for health, you could be increasing irregularities in your heart by reducing your potassium intake.
How to Introduce Potassium into Your Life
The best way to get any nutrient is from fresh foods. For potassium you are in luck. Several foods contain it. The most notable is bananas. Other foods are: leafy green vegetables, apricots, fish, chicken, lean meat and kiwi fruits.
These don’t have to be eaten as is. Here are some ideas for recipes to incorporate more potassium into your diet.
* Trail Mix – Who doesn’t love trail mix? Instead of buying it from the store, create your own with no preservatives. Add dried apricots, raisins, shelled peanuts, sliced almonds, and oats. Eating a handful of trail mix a couple of times a day provides vitamin C, vitamin E, healthy fats and potassium.
* Banana smoothies – A smoothie is filling and can be used as a quick breakfast or a sweet dessert. Combine a sliced banana, strawberries, blueberries, vanilla yogurt, and a splash of apple juice and ice cubes. Mix well. If you need more sweetness, add a packet of Truvia or your favorite sweetener.
* Candied carrots – Instead of green beans, dazzle your family tonight with julienned candied carrots. Slice a carrot into strips. Sauté veggies and a little butter in a skillet. Add some brown sugar. Cook until tender.
* Sautéed greens – Green vegetables are filled with plenty of good stuff, including potassium. Create a savory side dish by chopping and cooking down your leafy greens (Swiss chard, collard greens). In the meantime, sauté some fresh garlic in a skillet. Add your leafy greens and let the garlic infuse into it. Serve with baked chicken breasts or lean pork loin.
* Vegetable soup – Make at home to increase the flavor without adding preservatives. Add chunks of squash, stewed tomatoes, lentils, kidney beans, corn, chopped onions and water. Let it cook slowly. Add your favorite spices like salt, pepper, and some chili powder for a kick.