By

A member of the British Dietetic Association, Juliette Kellow has worked in the NHS and for the food industry, and is the former editor of magazines Slimming and Top Santé. She's also the former editorial...

Potassium is essential for regulating the heartbeat and blood pressure. Follow our dietary tips to increase your intake

Who’s missing out?

With 16% of teenage boys, 31% of teenage girls, 10% of all men and 20% of all women have exceptionally low intakes, this is a cause for concern, especially for the 15% of older people who have low intakes, as they’re more likely to have high blood pressure.

Important for?

Helping control the balance of fluids in the body. It conducts nerve impulses, initiates muscle contractions and regulates heartbeat and blood pressure.

Find it in

Fruit (including dried), veg, fruit juices, milk, tea, coffee, meat, fish, nuts and seeds.

Boost your intake

  • Make sure you get at least five-a-day – it’s the easiest way to meet your needs.
  • Snack on dried fruit, such as apricots, dates, figs and sultanas – they’re a concentrated source of potassium.
  • Add avocado to salad or mash it and use in sandwiches instead of butter or marg – it’s a great source of this mineral.
  • Whiz up a banana milkshake.
  • Swap boiled or mashed potato for a jacket – in contains more than twice the potassium.
  • Pick up a skinny cappuccino or latte on your way to work.
  • Swap a fizzy drink for a small glass of unsweetened fruit juice, topping it up with sparkling or soda water.
  • Add a squeeze of lemon or lime juice to fish dishes and salads.
  • Keep chopped up veg sticks in the fridge and put a bowl of fruit out in the living room, ready for when you fancy a snack.

 

Boost your intake with these foods

FoodPotassium (mg)
200g skin-on homemade potato wedges1404
1 large (220g cooked weight) jacket potato1320
200g roasted potatoes1194
200g boiled new potatoes in their skins754
200g boiled regular potatoes730
140g grilled haddock606
200g boiled sweet potato600
1 grilled skinless chicken breast (125g)575
80g baby spinach546
200g tin reduced-sugar-and-salt baked beans544
125g grilled lean rump steak538
140g baked cod514
140g grilled mackerel489
125g tin sardines in tomato sauce464
½ large tin tomatoes (200g)424
30g dried apricots414
Small packet crisps (30g)398
100g raw chicken breast370
Small glass tomato juice (150ml)345
½ large tin red kidney beans (120g drained)336
1 banana330
2 slices well-done lean roast beef or pork (80g)328
100g tinned pink salmon326
½ avocado326
30g sultanas318
1 slice cantaloupe melon (150g)315
200ml semi-skimmed milk312
100g raw calf’s liver310
30g raisins306
80g steamed broccoli298
100g raw extra-lean minced beef290
3 sticks celery288
50g no added sugar or salt muesli270
30g dried figs267
125g pot low-fat fruit yogurt255
2tbsp (30g) pumpkin seeds246
80g boiled green beans240
200g Quorn243
Small glass orange juice (150ml)237
14 almonds (30g)234
30g dried prunes228
Small milk chocolate bar (50g)226
80g baked butternut squash224
Pint of standard strength lager222
30g cashew nuts or hazelnuts219
30g sunflower seeds213
2tbsp (30g) peanut butter210
2 slices lean roast lamb (60g)210
30g dates210
30g unsalted peanuts201
9 Brazil nuts (30g)198
1 orange195
1 fresh tomato190
Mug instant black coffee (200ml)184
1 pear179
1 peach176
80g boiled asparagus176
80g grapes174
½ small can tuna in water (75g)173
½ red pepper172
80g boiled cauliflower172
2 rashers grilled back bacon (50g)170
80g cherries168
200g cooked wholewheat pasta164
80g raw mangetout160
½ grapefruit160
30g pecan nuts156
2 Shredded Wheat153
1 nectarine153
80g boiled green cabbage150
40g oats149
30g branflakes144
80g frozen and boiled peas142
Small glass red wine (125ml)138
80g strawberries or raspberries136
½ mango135
30g walnuts135
80g boiled carrots133
80g blackberries128
80g tinned sweetcorn126
80g cucumber125
200g cooked brown rice124
1tbsp pine nuts (15g)117
80g boiled runner beans104
1 slice wholemeal bread101
1 apple100