Diet & Potassium Needs

Written by Sky Taylor, Diet Bites

Diet shakes made with wholesome milk can assist weight loss in a healthy way.


Reader Question. I have leg cramps, usually at night.

On a recent visit to my doctor he said that I may not be getting enough potassium.  

He suggested bananas and potatoes but those are loaded with calories.  

Have you got any healthier suggestions?  

Thank you ~ Darlene - Miami Dade, FL

Diet Bites Response. Darlene, great question - and I have so much I'd like to say to you!

Potassium Rich Bananas & Potatoes, Healthier Than Rice Cakes for About Twice the Calories

First of all, bananas and potatoes may contain a few more calories than a rice cake, but oh my - they are packed with nutrients that you need while dieting.  

And they are oh - so filling! They each contain about 100 calories each, and that's for medium-sized choices. While most rice cakes contain about 50 calories, that's like twice the number of calories of one rice cake - or popcorn cake. If you are concerned about the caloric content, why not enjoy 1/2 a banana or small potato.

Additives to Potatoes Add Calories & Fat Grams

As potatoes go, it's actually the toppings such as butter, sour cream and/or dressings that up the calories to the unsafe zone. Opt for no calorie butter spray, light sour cream, and just a smidgen of REAL bacon bits to pack some great bites into this Super Potassium Food!

Other foods rich in potassium include: oranges, avocado (high in calories and fat - so be careful), mushrooms, spinach, brussel sprouts, raw almonds, cantaloupe.

Potassium Content:

- One large button mushroom contains 73 mg of potassium and 5 calories. One-half cup contains 305 mg of potassium and 21 calories.


- One cup of raw spinach contains 167 mg of potassium and 7 calories.

- One-half ounce of raw almonds contain 81 calories and 100 mg of potassium.

- One cup of raw brussel sprouts contains 38 calories and 342 mg of potassium.

- One medium sized cantaloupe contains 188 calories and 1,474 mg of potassium.

Potassium in Natural Foods

How do mushrooms, spinach, brussel sprouts, raw almonds and cantaloupe compare to the banana and potato for potassium grams?

- One medium banana contains 110 calories and 422 mg of potassium.

- One small potato contains 117 calories and 692 mg of potassium.

As a note, your legs may be cramping due to a combination of things so I'd suggest that you up your potassium intake and if the cramping persists, then see your doctor for further evaluation.  

Some other things that can contribute to leg cramps include: Restless Leg Syndrome, cardiovascular problems, overworked OR over-exercised muscles, diabetes, anemia, peripheral artery disease or even a need for an increase your fluid intake, especially since you reside in a warmer area - just to name a few.

So as you can see, the cause ranges from simple to serious - so stay on top of this, Darlene!  Thank you for your question.  ~ Sky at Diet Bites


Related Articles

How many fat cells do I have?

Weight Gain Due to Exhaustion

Diet Bites | Disclaimers

Diet Bites is a Trademark