Not consuming enough Potassium raises blood pressure just like eating too much salt

November 20, 2008

Researchers from the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center and the Dallas VA Medical Center analyzed data on 3,300 participants in the Dallas Heart Study. The researchers found that if the level of potassium in the urine was low blood pressure rose. In fact as the level of potassium dropped in the urine, blood pressure climbed  higher and higher. The level of Potassium in the urine reflects how much you consume from your diet. If the level in your urine is low your intake is low and vice versa.      
The findings were particularly true among African Americans, who made up 50 percent of the study population. The lead author of the study, Susan Hedayati, MD states that "This effect was even stronger than the effect of sodium on blood pressure." Dr. Hedayati stated "There has been a lot of publicity about lowering salt or sodium in the diet in order to lower blood pressure, but not enough on increasing dietary potassium," Dr Hedayati noted. "High-potassium foods include fruits such as bananas and citrus fruits and vegetables. Consuming a larger amount of these foods in the diet may lower blood pressure." The findings were presented on November 8th, 2008 at the 41st Annual Meeting and Scientific Exposition of the American Society of Nephrology, held in Philadelphia.