Get Ideas for Shopping Low Potassium Foods

Your body needs a healthy level of potassium to maintain a regular heartbeat and keep your muscles and nerves working well. Having kidney disease can make it harder to maintain a healthy potassium level range, which is 3.5-5.0 mEg/L if you’re living with CKD or 3.5-5.5 mEq/L if you have ESRD. It’s important to work with your dietitian to understand and manage your potassium intake. If your dietitian recommends a low potassium diet, incorporating low potassium foods in each food group will help you stay your healthiest. If your lab results indicate a low potassium level, your dietitian may recommend more high potassium foods.

TALK TO YOUR DIETITIAN

Review your potassium lab results and discuss whether you should follow a low potassium diet.

Foods for a low potassium diet

Here’s a list of low potassium foods to help you plan healthy meals and write up your grocery list. Potassium needs vary by person, so talk to your dietitian about your potassium level and appropriate foods to choose.
Fruit_Icon

FRUITS
LOW IN POTASSIUM

Serving size: 1 small piece or ½ cup

Apples
Blueberries
Cherries

Dried fruits: apples, blueberries, cherries, coconut, cranberries
Grapes
Lychee
Pear
Persimmon
Pineapple
Plum
Raspberries
Strawberries
Tangerines
Watermelon
List of flexible-potassium foods

BREADS, CEREALS & GRAINS LOW IN POTASSIUM

Serving size: 1 slice, 1 piece or ½ cup


Bagel (half)
Bread loaf
Cereal
Corn tortilla
Couscous

English muffin (half)
Old-fashioned or steel-cut oatmeal
Pasta

Pita (half)
Quinoa
Rice
Rice cakes
Slow-cook Cream of Wheat
Slow-cook grits
List of flexible-potassium foods

VEGETABLES
LOW IN POTASSIUM

Serving size: ½ cup fresh or cooked or 1 cup of raw leafy

Asparagus
Bean sprouts
Broccoli
Cabbage
Carrots
Cauliflower
Celery
Cherry tomatoes
Corn
Cucumber
Eggplant
Green or wax beans
Greens: collard, mustard, turnip
Jicama
Kale
Leeks
Lettuce
Mushrooms
Okra
Onion

Peas: green, sugar snap, snow
Peppers: green, red, yellow, jalapeño
Radish
Spinach
(raw)
Squash: spaghetti, yellow
Turnips
Water chestnuts
Fluds_icon

FLUIDS
LOW IN POTASSIUM

Serving size: 4 ounces

100% fruit juices: apple, cranberry, grape, pineapple
Fresh-brewed coffee
Fresh-brewed tea: black, herbal
Fresh-squeezed lemonade
Nectars: apricot, guava, mango, papaya, peach, pear
Sodas: club, lemon-lime
Water: sparkling, tap
Protein_Icon

PROTEINS
LOW IN POTASSIUM

Serving size for ESRD: ½ cup or 3-5 ounces, cooked
Serving size for CKD: ¼ cup or 1-2 ounces, cooked

Beans
Beef
Chicken
Edamame
Eggs (whole or egg whites)
Fish
Lamb
Lentils
Pork
Tofu
Turkey
Veal
Wild game
DessertsSnacks_icon

DESSERTS & SNACKS LOW IN POTASSIUM

Serving size: 1 piece, 1/8 pie or 1/2 cup


All-natural fruit leather
Animal crackers
Applesauce
Frozen fruit bars
Fruit cocktail
Homemade desserts: fruit pie or cobbler
Italian ice
Nuts, seeds and natural nut butters (2 tablespoons)
Rice Krispies Treats®
Sherbet

Unsalted snacks: crackers, pita chips, popcorn, pretzels, tortilla chips

SYMPTOMS OF LOW POTASSIUM

Having either high or low potassium levels can cause:

  • Tingling and numbness in your fingers and toes
  • Muscle weakness, cramping, fatigue
  • Nausea and/or vomiting
  • Irregular heartbeat or palpitations

Talk to your care team if you experience any of these symptoms.

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