When it comes to vitamin deficiencies, low potassium is not something that often comes to mind over the D’s, C’s and B’s. However, this vitamin is responsible for muscle function, fluid regulation, and several other vital body functions. Other than the odd Charley horse, how can you know if you’re potassium stores are low?
Obviously, keeping potassium levels up goes farther than eating a banana. In fact, you can also get a good serving of the vitamin in an avocado, a baked potato (with skin), or with a handful spinach, Swiss chard, broccoli, or a bowl of strawberries. Here are six common indicators of low potassium…
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1. How Much is Enough Potassium?
According to U.S. Dietary Guidelines, North American adults are hardly reaching the daily-recommended amount of 4,700-milligrams of potassium daily. This is especially concerning, considering a study from the Clinical Journal of the American Society of Nephrology that linked potassium to the ability to ward off kidney and heart disease.
Statistics from the Institute of Medicine found that most of us are getting about 50-percent of the recommended daily allotment for potassium. Even more troubling is the fact that potassium deficiency can’t be detected via routine testing.