Potassium and Your Diet
Potassium and your diet
Potassium is a mineral found in our foods. Healthy kidneys maintain a normal balance of potassium by eliminating any excess in the urine. Diseased kidneys are unable to get rid of the potassium adequately. Consequently, the amount of potassium in the blood may increase to dangerously elevated levels. This may cause an irregular heartbeat and occur without any warning. High levels of potassium can even cause the heart to stop.
How do I know if my Potassium is too high or too low?
Potassium is measured by a common blood test. Your kidney doctor will check your potassium level often and it is one of the reasons it is so important to have your lab work done before coming to your office visit. A safe level is between 3.5 and 5.5 MEq/L. Your doctor will tell you if you need to change the amount of potassium in your diet.
The following is a list of various foods that are high in potassium
|HIGH POTASSIUM FRUITS/ JUICE||HIGH POTASSIUM VEGETABLES|
Apricot and Apricot Nectar
Grapefruit and Grapefruit Juice
Orange and Orange Juice
Prunes and Prune Juice
The following food are low in potassium.
In general, canned fruits and vegetables are lower in potassium than fresh or frozen.
|LOW POTASSIUM FRUITS||LOW POTASSIUM VEGETABLES|
Asparagus (small amounts)
|Eating more than one portion (½ cup) can make a lower potassium food into a higher potassium food.|
Where do I go for more information?
Contact the following organizations for more information, or ask your dietician:
National Kidney Foundation
The American Association of Kidney Patients
The National Kidney Disease Education Program