Potassium is often mentioned in relationship to healthy diets and apple cider vinegar. Just what is potassium, how much do you need, and how do you get it?
Potassium is a mineral that helps your electrolytes in your body stay balanced. It is important in your muscles and nerves. Potassium also helps in proper metabolism. If you don't get enough daily potassium, you can end up with high cholesterol.
They used to think that men needed more potassium in their diet than women, but current guidelines are that both adult women and adult men aim for 4.7g of potassium a day. Most foods are listed in milligrams (mg) so that would be 4700mg.
Where do you get potassium from in nature? First, you get it from meat. This includes beef, chicken, ham, pork, turkey, fish, oysters, lobster. Etc. People on a low carb diet receive a wealth of potassium in their diet.
Next, you get it in your vegetables. This includes asparagus, tomatoes, squash, cauliflower, mushrooms, and spinach. All of these are things encouraged by low carb diets for you to eat - even in the first two weeks of the diet.
Here are a few of the top food items to keep in mind:
1 cup cooked spinach: 839mg
1 cup baked acorn squash: 899mg
1 cup yogurt: 625mg
1/2 cup avocado: 558mg
1 cup banana: 428mg
I love making smoothies, and this is part of the reason. You can easily add spinach into each smoothie, drink it down in a variety of flavors, and ensure you're getting healthy potassium into you with each one.
How about apple cider vinegar? Unfortunately, despite the claims that apple cider vinegar provides potassium, it only provides 11mg per tablespoon. Even if you had 3 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar every day, you would only get 33mg, or less than 1/100th of your minimum total intake. You definitely need far more than that!
So my suggestion is to take a multivitamin to ensure you cover your bases, and strive to ingest ample healthy ingredients to get your potassium the natural way. The multi-vitamin helps serve as a safety net, in case your regular menu doesn't work out for some reason.
Lisa Shea's Library of Low Carb Books