Eating healthily and consuming the right nutrients can improve your circulatory health. Find out how potassium helps your blood pressure.
To keep your blood pressure levels within a healthy range, you need to get the necessary nutrients and vitamins. While every nutrient is important, potassium stands out for its ability to help lower high blood pressure (hypertension).
According to cardiovascular specialist Raghavendra Makam, MD, MPH, potassium is effective at lowering blood pressure. “The American Heart Association (AHA) recommends having a sufficient potassium intake both as a preventative measure and a treatment option for patients with hypertension,” says Makam.
Potassium and Blood Pressure
Having too much sodium in your system can increase your blood pressure – but potassium can help. According to Makam, “potassium helps the kidneys excrete that excess sodium instead of retaining it.”
In addition, potassium helps promote the body’s overall vascular health by easing the tension in blood vessel walls. “Because potassium positively affects your entire vascular system, it helps reduce multiple risks,” Makam explains. “Because it helps blood vessels in your brain, kidneys and heart, it reduces the risk of stroke, kidney failure and heart disease.”
The American diet emphasizes a lot of high-sodium foods like fast food, frozen meals, canned soups, and so on. However, if you want to be healthy, you need to reduce the amount of sodium and increase the potassium in your diet. “The recommended daily requirement of potassium is around 4,700 to 5,000 milligrams of potassium,” says Makam.
While most people may think of bananas as a good potassium source, Makam suggests you diversify your sources. “Since a medium banana contains about 422 milligrams of potassium, you would have to eat more than 10 bananas a day to get the recommended daily amount of potassium, which is obviously not a wise choice given the additional calories it adds to the diet,” explains Makam.
For example, you can get your daily intake from cantaloupes, grapefruits, nectarines, kiwis, carrots, lima beans, spinach, or avocados. You can also take potassium supplements if you’re not getting enough through your diet.
However, you should keep in mind that too much potassium may lead to muscle and heart issues, so don’t “overdose.” Furthermore, individuals with kidney disease or who take ACE inhibitors, ARBs, or Aldosterone antagonists should consult with their doctor before increasing their potassium intake. “Your healthcare provider will know your specific health conditions, your current medications and latest blood levels, which will help come up with the right approach for you.”
Most Americans are not getting enough potassium in their diet and are missing out on the health benefits it provides. If you want to boost your blood pressure health, consider increasing your potassium intake and taking supplements like L-arginine Plus.
Its ingredients are effective at promoting circulation, blood pressure, cholesterol, and more. Give your health the support it needs by getting the necessary potassium and taking L-arginine Plus.