Do Potatoes Have Potassium?

Potassium mainly serves as an electrolyte but it is also involved in a number of other essential processes. It works with other electrolytes to help maintain a balance between minerals and fluids at the cellular level as well as throughout the body. This in turn helps maintain muscle, nerve, heart, and kidney function. It is therefore important to ensure that you are getting enough potassium from your diet. Some people may wonder whether potatoes have potassium or not.

Do Potatoes Have Potassium?

Yes, they do. An average-sized potato provides you with 20% of your recommended daily intake of potassium. If you opt for a medium-sized potato with skin intact, you get about 950 mg of potassium along with 170 calories. A large baked potato with skin can have up to 1640 mg of potassium with less than 300 calories. A small baked potato with skin can provide you up to 760 mg of potassium.

Whole Potatoes vs. Peeled Potatoes

Most of potassium that potatoes contain comes from their flesh. An average-sized potato (baked) provides you with 610 mg of potassium when you only eat its flesh. But you also cannot ignore the role of the potato skin in increasing your potassium intake. The skin of an average-sized baked potato has only 115 calories but provides you with 330 mg of potassium. It means that you are going to get more potassium if you choose to eat a potato with skin as compared to a potato of the same size without skin.

Potassium in Fried Potatoes

Statistics show that an average American eats around 140 pounds of potatoes in one year, which is equivalent to one large potato each day. Most of this consumption takes place in the form of chips and fries. The fact is that fried potatoes still provide you with an adequate amount of potassium, but you also get loads of fat, calories, and sodium.

A small serving of French fries contains about 12% of your recommended daily intake of potassium – it is a bit more than the amount of potassium found in half of a small baked potato with skin. The consideration is that this serving of fries is about 94% higher in sodium, 99% higher in fat, and 70% higher in calories as compared to half of a small baked potato.

How Much Potassium Should You Consume Per Day?

Do potatoes have potassium? Yes, they do. So how much potassium you should get every day? Experts believe that you should get at least 4,700 mg of potassium every day.

Keep in mind that you may need less or more potassium depending on your overall health. If you have low potassium levels (hypokalemia) or hypertension, you may require more potassium. You may also have to increase your intake of potassium if you are taking diuretics because they make you lose potassium and other electrolytes in urine. You have to limit your intake of potassium if you have high potassium levels (hyperkalemia) or kidney disease.

Other Foods That Have High Potassium

Yes, potatoes contain plenty of potassium, but you can certainly get potassium from other sources too. Here are some foods to include in your diet to increase your intake of potassium.

1. Sweet Potatoes

Sweet potatoes are one of the richest source of potassium, as a sweet potato provides you with 694 mg of potassium with only 131 calories. They also provide lots of beta-carotene, fiber, and carbs. You can opt for grilled, fried, baked, stuffed, or mashed sweet potatoes for potassium.

2. Tomato Sauces

You can consume fresh tomatoes to get an adequate amount of potassium, and tomato puree and paste are even better. You get about 664 mg of potassium from one-quarter cup of tomato paste, while there is 549 mg of potassium in one half cup of tomato puree. A cup of tomato juice offers about 400 mg of potassium.

3. Beet Greens

The next time you buy fresh beets, just do not toss the greens in the trash because they can be a great source of potassium. You can cook them and get 644 mg of potassium from a half-cup serving.

4. Beans

You get about 600 mg of potassium from half a cup of white beans. However, you can also get an adequate amount of potassium from lima beans, kidney beans, split peas, and lentils. Beans are also good for your cardiovascular health and provide you with a good amount of fiber.

5. Yogurt

You get 579 mg of potassium from 8 oz. of plain non-fat yogurt. Going for yogurt is a good option because it also provides you with probiotics that improve digestion.

6. Clams

You can opt for both fresh and canned clams to increase your intake of potassium. You get 534 mg of potassium from 3 oz. of clams. At the same time, you get plenty of vitamin B12 from clams that offer other health benefits.

7. Prunes

Do potatoes have potassium? You know that they do. But what if you don't like the taste of them? In this condition, you can choose prunes. Consume ¾ cup of prunes and you can get about 530 mg of potassium. Including prunes in your diet is a good idea because they also help keep your bones strong by maintaining your bone density. Stewed prunes are also a great source of potassium.

8. Carrot Juice

Carrot juice is great for your eyesight, but at the same time, it offers other health benefits because it is rich in potassium. A ¾ cup serving provides you with 500 mg of potassium.

9. Fish

A 3 oz. serving of meaty fish like tuna and halibut offers about 500 mg of potassium. You will still get an adequate amount of potassium if you opt for farm-raised rainbow trout. Including fish in your diet is a good idea because it provides you with healthy omega-3 fatty acids that reduce inflammation and lower your risk of developing heart disease.

10. Bananas

The list is certainly incomplete without bananas because they are always a great source of potassium. Even a medium-sized banana provides you with more than 400 mg of potassium. Since bananas contain resistant starch, they help keep you full longer. They are also great for your metabolism.

11. Milk

Do potatoes have potassium? Yes, they do, and so does milk. With 382 mg of potassium in every cup, milk is a great source of potassium. It is better to opt for the non-fat or skim version to get your potassium. You can simply drink it or add it to your smoothies to get more calcium and potassium. 

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