Grandma's Potassium Mineral Guide

Potassium, is important for a healthy nervous system and a regular heat rhythm. It helps prevent stroke, aids in proper muscle contraction, and works with sodium to control the body's water balance.

This mineral is important for chemical reactions within the cells and aids in maintaining stable blood pressure and in transmitting electro-chemical impulses. It also regulates the transfer of nutrients through cell membranes. The function of this mineral has been shown to decrease with age, which may account for some of the circulatory damage, lethargy, and weakness experienced by older people.

Signs of potassium deficiency include:

  • abnormally dry skin
  • acne
  • chills
  • cognitive impairment
  • constipation
  • depression
  • diarrhea
  • diminished reflex function
  • edema
  • nervousness
  • insatiable thirst
  • fluctuations in heartbeat
  • glucose intolerance
  • growth impairment
  • high cholesterol levels
  • insomnia
  • low blood pressure
  • muscular fatigue and weakness
  • nausea and vomiting
  • periodic headaches
  • proteinuria (protein in the urine)
  • respiratory distress
  • salt retention

photo of a hand of ripe bananas a natural food source of potassium photo of a plate of cottage cheese a good food source of potassium photo of a wooden crock filled with black strap molasses a natural food source of potassium

Food and Herbal Sources of Potassium

Food Sources of Potassium

  • dairy products
  • fish
  • fruit
  • legumes
  • meat
  • poultry
  • vegetables
  • whole grains

This mineral is specifically found in:

  • apricots
  • avocados
  • bananas
  • blackstrap molasses
  • brewer's yeast
  • brown rice
  • dates
  • dulse
  • figs
  • dried fruit
  • garlic
  • nuts
  • potatoes
  • raisins
  • winter squash
  • torula yeast
  • wheat bran
  • yams

Herbs containing potassium include:

  • catnip
  • hops
  • horsetail
  • nettle
  • plantain
  • red clover
  • sage
  • skullcup


Kidney disorders, diarrhea, and the use of diuretics or laxatives all disrupt potassium levels. Tobacco and caffeine reduce absorption of this mineral.

Potassium is needed for hormone secretion. The secretion of stress hormones causes a decrease in the potassium-to-sodium ration both inside and outside the cells. As a result, stress increases the body's potassium requirements.


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