How it helps
■ Necessary part of protein formation.
■ Critical in maintaining the body’s fluid balance.
■ Needed for the transmission of nerve impulses to muscles.
■ Regulates the transfer of nutrients through cell membranes.
Where potassium can be found
Dairy foods, fish, fruit, legumes, meat, poultry, vegetables, whole grains, apricots, avocados, bananas, brown rice, dates, nuts, potatoes, raisins, wheat bran and yams.
What are the signs of deficiency?
Dry skin, acne, chills, constipation, depression, edema, insatiable thirst, insomnia and muscle fatigue.
■ Kidney disorder, diarrhea and use of diuretics or laxatives all disrupt potassium levels.
■ Tobacco and caffeine usage reduce potassium absorption.