A person who does not get enough potassium in their diet may need to take a supplement. Some supplements can help reduce symptoms such as leg cramps and high blood pressure, while others can improve kidney function.
There are several different types of potassium supplements available over the counter and by prescription, but which one is best for you depends on your individual needs.
Best for Leg Cramps
If you frequently experience leg cramps, consider adding a potassium supplement to your diet. Potassium is an electrolyte that supports nerve function, heart health and muscle contractions. It also helps prevent muscle twitches and pain, according to the Cleveland Clinic.
You can find potassium in many foods, including fruits, vegetables and beans. However, you need to consume enough of these nutrient-rich foods to get the recommended daily allowance. You should also talk with your doctor if you suspect an underlying potassium deficiency is causing your leg cramps, as this could cause your symptoms to worsen over time.
The best way to get your daily amount of potassium is through a balanced diet that includes a variety of nutrient-rich fruits, vegetables and whole grains. It is also important to drink plenty of water to ensure you are hydrated and avoiding dehydration, which can trigger leg cramps.
Bananas are a popular choice for muscle cramp relief, as they are rich in potassium, magnesium and calcium. They are also an excellent source of complex carbohydrates, which can give your body the energy it needs to complete exercise and build muscle.
Another great source of potassium is avocados, as they are high in this nutrient and low in calories. They are a good addition to any meal or snack and can help you stay full longer without feeling hungry.
Other nourishing sources of potassium include sardines, which are rich in iron and omega-3 fatty acids. They are also an excellent source of selenium, which is essential for muscle health and recovery.
Salmon is another good source of potassium and iron, as well as other nutrients that help relieve cramps. It is also a rich source of protein and anti-inflammatory fats. It is a good source of vitamin D, which plays an essential role in muscle function.
You can also take a potassium supplement that will provide you with the recommended daily intake of this mineral. Solgar Potassium is a great option for this purpose, as it is certified Kosher and free of fillers, artificial ingredients or preservatives. It also has a recyclable bottle that protects the tablets from heat and light.
Best for High Blood Pressure
High blood pressure is a serious health concern. This chronic condition increases the risk of heart disease and stroke. It can also lead to kidney damage and other serious complications.
But reducing sodium and increasing potassium in your diet can help lower your blood pressure. That's because potassium helps your body regulate the water in your body.
Potassium is a key component of a complex chemical pump that moves sodium out of cells and into cells. This process is essential to cell function and energy production.
In addition, it's important for muscle function and helps prevent the onset of cramping. It may also help improve vascular health by easing tension in the walls of your blood vessels and protecting against inflammation.
However, there's a catch: Most Americans don't get enough potassium. In fact, only 2% of Americans meet the recommended dietary intake for this mineral.
If you want to increase your potassium intake, you'll need to eat more fruits and vegetables. These are rich in potassium, as well as other beneficial nutrients.
Fruits and veggies are also a great way to lower your sodium intake, which can help reduce high blood pressure. Many vegetables, such as broccoli and arugula, are high in potassium and contain fiber, which helps keep your digestive system functioning properly.
The average American consumes more than twice the recommended amount of sodium each day. Moreover, nearly 9 in 10 children in the United States eat too much salt.
In general, the best way to reduce your salt and potassium intake is to eat a healthy, balanced diet that's low in sodium. This includes limiting salty foods and adding more fruits, vegetables, beans, whole grains, nuts and seeds.
But if you don't like to cook or can't eat a lot of fresh produce, a supplement is an option for getting enough potassium. This is a safe and easy way to boost your potassium levels without overdoing it.
This supplement is made from a combination of pure potassium and potassium gluconate, which makes it a good choice for those looking for an effective way to increase their daily potassium. It also comes in a convenient liquid form that's easy to take on the go. The formula is quality-assured and free from artificial colorings or preservatives.
Best for Heart Health
Potassium is an essential mineral that helps keep blood pressure under control, prevent strokes and improve kidney function. It’s also important for heart, muscle and nerve health. It’s found in a variety of foods, including fruits, vegetables, dairy products and meats.
The best way to get potassium is through your diet. Eat a wide range of vegetables and fruits, low-fat milk and yogurt, and lean meats. Keeping your body well-hydrated and taking a multivitamin/mineral supplement are also important.
A diet that’s high in potassium-rich foods and low in salt can help lower the risk of hypertension, osteoporosis and stroke. It can also reduce the risk of developing kidney stones and diabetes.
According to the Dietary Guidelines for Americans, a diet that contains 4.7 grams of potassium per day is adequate for most adults. A healthy diet should include a variety of fruits, vegetables and beans, as well as whole grains.
If you’re not getting enough potassium from your diet, consider using a potassium-rich supplement. Several studies have shown that potassium supplements can lower blood pressure, especially systolic blood pressure.
Researchers have also found that people who are deficient in potassium may be more susceptible to high blood pressure and strokes. This is due to the fact that potassium controls sodium levels in the body.
It’s important to talk to your doctor before taking a potassium supplement, especially if you have a history of kidney disease or use certain medications. Some of these medications can cause potassium toxicity, which can result in side effects.
When choosing a potassium supplement, make sure it is a quality-assured product and third-party tested. It should also be free from ingredients such as starch, color and gluten.
Life Extension has a high-quality, long-lasting potassium supplement that contains 99 milligrams of pure potassium gluconate and magnesium in an extended release format. This supplement is a great choice for athletes looking to optimize their health and performance while maintaining optimal blood pressure and muscle function.
Best for Magnesium
Magnesium is a key mineral nutrient that's essential for a range of bodily functions, including muscle and nerve health. It is also a cofactor in more than 300 enzymes. Deficiencies can lead to fatigue, muscle weakness and a variety of other issues.
In addition, magnesium may help improve sleep and reduce anxiety symptoms. It helps maintain a regular, consistent melatonin level in your brain that regulates circadian rhythms and supports normal sleep cycles.
Potassium is another mineral that's vital for heart health and blood pressure, but it can be hard to get enough of it from your diet. Adding a potassium supplement to your daily routine can be a great way to ensure you're getting the right amount.
For a low-cost option, try Best Naturals Potassium Gluconate Supplement, which comes in a bottle of 250 capsules for under $10. The capsules are quality-assured and third-party tested, and the formula is gluten-free and nut-free.
You can take the powder dissolved in water or you can mix it with food to make a smoothie or other tasty drink. The liquid formula is free of artificial flavors and sweeteners, and it contains stevia extract to help make it taste better.
This product is easy on your stomach and gets high marks from reviewers for improving sleep and relieving restless leg syndrome and nighttime cramps. It also helps prevent insomnia and is safe to use if you're pregnant or breastfeeding.
A magnesium deficiency can worsen menstrual cramps and premenstrual syndrome (PMS). One study found that taking 250 mg of magnesium daily helped reduce bloating, depression, and anxiety in women with PMS symptoms compared with a control group.
However, more studies are needed to determine whether a magnesium supplement can alleviate PMS symptoms in everyone who has low magnesium levels.
Lastly, a magnesium deficiency can increase your risk of a stroke or heart attack. It can also lead to muscle pain, diarrhea and a weak heart.
The best magnesium supplements are ones that are designed to be taken at least two times a day, or as directed by your healthcare professional. They're available in many different forms, including tablets, capsules and powders.