It’s an interesting thing when hubby is in the medical field and I drag home my lab reports like a lil kid wanting to flash a report card with all “A’s” to their parents.
I show it to him letting him do his own professional look over when he proclaims that, yes, my HDL (good cholesterol ) at 80 is pretty amazing and everything else does look awesome but, “my potassium is really on the low end of the scale…. I need to eat more bananas or foods to push that up a bit.
For the record, mine was 3.7 with the low number on the scale being 3.5.
Ok, so maybe he was right. That was hovering right around the low end and those numbers don’t even reflect my body when I’m in the midst of heavy training.
Whoa…wait… maybe my dear 1.5 readers you’re sitting there scratching your head thinking… “what is potassium and why do I need to be concerned over it?”
Simplified, potassium along with sodium and chloride is one of your bodies most important electrolytes which are minerals in your blood, urine, and bodily fluids that contain an electric charge.
No kidding right ?? You’re ….electric 😉
Nearly 70% of your potassium is found in bodily fluids like plasma, blood and sweat, while the rest is stashed away in your bones. The adequate daily intake is 4.7 grams but most Americans don’t get enough in their diets… remember it’s flushed from your body in several ways making it a daily ongoing renewal.
This mineral does a lot of other things, like keeping your blood pressure in check among others.
In an average day we lose potassium through urine and sweat, but here’s where I sat up and paid more attention.
Athletes can have a higher loss due to more sweating, more so if you really sweat out a lot ( which I do). Lower potassium levels can decrease your endurance and energy. Specifically, potassium works to regulate the nerves and muscles, it is also involved in the storage of carbohydrates to fuel your muscles. You need to consume potassium rich foods every day, especially if you’re an athlete.
It definitely is something I will be making a more intentional focus on especially as we move into warmer months where sweat abounds in physical activities 😛
So what will my strategy be? I’ve made a list of high and medium potassium foods, the majority of which I eat. Bananas are a high potassium food so I’ll be intentionally hammering out two a day.
Todays afternoon snack was a banana with some raw almonds =) I’m just going to keep track daily for awhile to see what my intake actually is.
I’m not getting all crazy over it… just some purposeful eating and then careful attention to my performance to notice any changes.
Who would think a mineral could make such a huge difference in the performance of your body?
And remember boys and girls the BEST way to get all of your vitamins and minerals is eating real food….not through shakes, pills, patches, powders or other random drink things.
This is ends your public service announcement 😉