Today, we’ll look at the top potassium-rich foods that reduce blood pressure. Do you experience strong heart palpitations, or a severe headache after eating something high in salt? The reason you get these symptoms is because you have too much sodium and too little potassium in your body. This imbalance causes your blood vessels to stiffen and narrow, restricting blood flow, and can lead to high blood pressure.
Potassium is important because it maintains healthy blood pressure and reduces the risk of clogged arteries, stroke, kidney disease, and heart failure. This mineral helps relax your blood vessels and without it, excess sodium in the body cannot be flushed out.
In today’s video, we’ll talk about 12 potassium-rich foods that reduce blood pressure, according to scientific studies.
We’ll also reveal one condition when you should REDUCE your intake of high potassium foods. In addition, you’ll get a FREE guide to what your blood pressure should be according to your age.
Keep watching until the end, because some of these foods have more potassium than bananas.
As always, this video is educational and does not construe medical advice, we are not doctors.
The recommended potassium intake should be around 4700 mg per day for adults. For comparison, one medium-sized banana contains around 422 milligrams of potassium.
Number 12. Celery.
Celery contains compounds called phthalides, which help relax blood vessels and lower blood pressure levels. In one 2014 study, researchers found that compared to other commonly cooked vegetables, eating cooked celery was significantly associated with reduced blood pressure. 100 grams of cooked celery contains around 284 milligrams of potassium.
Number 11. Beetroot.
One cup of cooked beets (170 grams) offers 518 milligrams of potassium. This root vegetable is an excellent source of fiber, magnesium, iron, and vitamin C. Beets are also rich in nitrates, which when converted into nitric oxide have been shown to support blood vessel function and overall heart health. A 2016 study concluded that while cooked beets and raw beet juice were both successful in improving blood pressure, cellular function, and reducing inflammation, raw beet juice was more effective.
Number 10. Spinach.
Whether frozen or fresh, spinach is a nutrient-dense vegetable that has more to offer than just potassium. Just 100 grams of raw spinach contains 558 milligrams of potassium. The same serving size contains 483 micrograms of vitamin K1, 194 micrograms of folate, and 79 milligrams of magnesium. One study published in 2015 found that individuals who consumed spinach soup for seven days had a reduction in their systolic and diastolic blood pressure.
Number 9. Tomatoes.
Tomatoes and tomato sauce rank high in potassium, offering 728 milligrams per cup (245 grams), and is also a rich source of vitamin A, vitamin C, iron, fiber, magnesium, and vitamin B6. One 2019 study reported that hypertension and extra tension on blood vessels were lowered by consuming tomato juice or tomato extract. Another key nutrient found in tomato products is lycopene, which has been found to help reduce high blood pressure and reduce prostate cancer risk, especially when tomatoes are cooked.
Number 8. Salmon.
Fatty fish like salmon is the perfect food for your heart because it’s both rich in potassium and omega-3 fatty acids. Half of a filet of salmon (178 grams) offers 684 milligrams of potassium. Researchers have long known that consuming omega-3 fatty acids daily can significantly decrease both systolic and diastolic blood pressure. These essential fats help reduce blood pressure levels by lowering inflammation and decreasing levels of blood-vessel-constricting compounds called oxylipins. And because salmon is also rich in potassium, it can help improve the cell lining of blood vessels, which leads to healthier blood pressure.
Number 7. Avocados.
Avocados are an incredibly good source of potassium. One cup of mashed avocado (150 grams) provides 1,120 milligrams of potassium. Avocados are also high in heart-healthy monounsaturated fats and very rich in fiber, antioxidants, vitamins C, B6, folate, and magnesium. Researchers believe that the unique combination of nutrients found in avocados work synergistically to promote heart health by improving lipid profile and lowering blood pressure.
Number 6. Pumpkin Seeds.
Pumpkin seeds are a good source of magnesium, arginine, and potassium — all of which may help keep your heart healthy. 100 grams of unsalted pumpkin seeds contain 919 milligrams of potassium. The high magnesium content in pumpkin seeds helps lower and regulate blood pressure. While arginine helps with the production of nitric oxide, which helps relax blood vessels and reduce blood pressure. That’s why many studies have shown that pumpkin seeds can help reduce high blood pressure and high cholesterol levels — two important risk factors for heart disease.
If you want to improve blood flow, watch our previous video on the top foods high in nitric oxide.
Number 5. Zucchini.
This cucumber-looking vegetable is incredibly rich in potassium, magnesium and vitamin C. Just 100 grams of zucchini provides 261 milligrams of potassium. Many studies have reported that zucchini can help dilate blood vessels, reduce LDL cholesterol levels, and lower blood pressure in hypertensive patients. Zucchini has also been found to help protect against stroke and heart disease.
Number 4. Sweet Potatoes.
Sweet potatoes contain both magnesium and potassium, which help keep your blood pressure in check. Studies have found a significant reduction in systolic and diastolic pressure with the consumption of baked sweet potatoes. One large sweet potato contains 1,110 milligrams of potassium. Since potassium is found in both the flesh and skin of the potatoes, the best way to consume them is washed and unpeeled. If you prefer potatoes, a single, medium baked potato has a remarkable 941 milligrams of potassium, which equals 20 percent of the daily recommended intake.
Number 3. Citrus Fruits.
Oranges, grapefruit, and lemons are some citrus fruits that have been found to be very effective against hypertension. These fruits are loaded with bioflavonoids, vitamin C, and minerals like magnesium and potassium. One study showed that hypertensive patients consuming lemon juice daily, led to a reduction in systolic blood pressure. Other studies have also found similar results from drinking orange or grapefruit juice. One cup (248 grams) of orange juice provides 496 milligrams of potassium, though it’s better to eat the fruit to avoid sugar spikes.
Number 2. Swiss Chard.
Swiss chard is loaded with healthy plant compounds that protect your cells. Just one cup of cooked chard (100 grams) delivers 549 milligrams of potassium and 86 milligrams of magnesium.
Number 1. Pomegranate.
Pomegranate juice is one of the most heart healthy drinks you can consume. A one-year-long study in 2012 concluded that prolonged pomegranate juice intake not only improved cardiovascular risk factors, but also strengthened innate immunity, and resulted in a lower incidence rate of hospitalization due to infections. Several studies have found that pomegranate juice significantly reduced systolic blood pressure, and had clear anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidative characteristics. One fruit can yield 666 mg of potassium. It’s also rich in vitamins C, K, folate, protein and fiber.
There you have it! The top 12 scientifically-proven potassium-rich foods that reduce blood pressure.
Other than eating potassium-rich foods, a few lifestyle changes can further improve your blood pressure. Make sure you get enough physical exercise, quit smoking, reduce salt intake, manage your stress levels, stay hydrated, and cut back on caffeine.
If your kidneys are not healthy, you will need to avoid foods that increase potassium in your blood. This is because your kidneys cannot remove extra potassium, and too much potassium stays in your blood. This can cause symptoms, such as weakness, numbness and tingling. If your potassium level becomes too high, it can lead to irregular heartbeat or even a heart attack.
To get our FREE guide to what your blood pressure should be according to your age, click the link below.
Lastly, what else does potassium do for your body, other than regulating blood pressure? Potassium is an electrolyte, which means it conducts electricity and helps in many bodily processes. Potassium activates nerve impulses throughout your nervous system, regulates your heartbeat and muscle contractions, reduces water retention, protects against stroke and helps prevent osteoporosis and kidney stones.
As you can see, the importance of potassium as a mineral and electrolyte cannot be overestimated.
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And now over to you: Which foods are you taking to manage your blood pressure?
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