Discharge Instructions: Eating a High Potassium Diet - Fairview Health Services
 
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Discharge Instructions: Eating a High-Potassium Diet

Your doctor has told you to eat a high-potassium diet. High-potassium diets are prescribed to people with low blood levels of potassium. They are also often prescribed to people with high blood pressure (hypertension). Potassium is found in many foods. This includes dairy products, nuts, seeds, and beans. It’s also found in many fruits and vegetables in high amounts.

Guidelines for a High-Potassium Diet

  • Eat fruits and vegetables in their fresh or raw form most often.

  • Check labels for ingredients that contain potassium. This includes potassium chloride. Add these items to your diet.

  • Try salt substitutes. Many of these have potassium.

  • Eat plenty of the following high-potassium foods:

    • Fruits: apricots (canned and fresh), bananas, cantaloupe, honeydew melon, kiwi, nectarines, oranges, orange juice, pears, dried fruits (apricots, dates, figs, prunes), and prune juice

    • Vegetables: asparagus, avocado, bamboo shoots, beets, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, celery, chard, okra, potatoes (white and sweet), pumpkin, rutabaga, spinach (cooked), squash, tomato, tomato sauce, tomato juice, and vegetable juice cocktail

    • Legumes: black-eyed peas, chickpeas, lentils, lima beans, navy beans, red kidney beans, soybeans, and split peas

    • Nuts and seeds: almonds, Brazil nuts, cashews, peanuts, peanut butter, pecans, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, and walnuts

    • Breads and cereals: bran and whole-grain products

    • Others: chocolate, cocoa, coconut milk, milk products, and molasses

  • Avoid licorice. This includes licorice root and licorice-containing teas. These can rob your body of potassium.

Follow-Up

Make a follow-up appointment for a repeat test. Our staff can help you do this.

When to Call Your Doctor

Call your doctor immediately if you have any of the following:

  • Vomiting

  • Fatigue

  • Diarrhea

  • Rapid, irregular heartbeat

  • Shortness of breath

  • Chest pain

  • Muscle cramps, spasms, or twitching

  • Weakness

  • Paralysis

 

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