Updated: Jul 9, 2020
While bodybuilders pay particular attention to their protein intake, they should be just as concerned with potassium.
This mineral is an electrolyte in your body and plays a significant role in maintaining the proper fluid balance in the cells, maintaining normal blood pressure, and conducting nerve impulses. For potassium to carry out its functions in the body, it has to work closely with minerals such as sodium. For example, the kidney, as we know, is the organ responsible for maintaining the required level of fluid in the body.
It achieves this by filtering the blood to suck any excess liquid, which it sends to the bladder to be removed as urine. If the ideal balance is maintained, then your blood pressure will stay normal, as excess fluid leads to increased blood pressure.
General Benefits of Potassium in The Body. General benefits include:
Health bones-It plays a role in preventing osteoporosis.
Maintains the ideal blood pressure.
Keeps heart disease at bay.
Potassium and Bodybuilding.
The cell function of potassium regulates the transfer of nutrients into cells, which facilitates muscle energy. The mineral is also crucial for healing injuries, as well as contributing to the general well-being of an individual.
This is especially evident in its ability to restore glycogen post workout. Granted, 4,700mg of potassium per day (taking into consideration that a medium-sized banana is 420mg) requires a good plan and knowledge of your food, something that bodybuilders know well enough.Therefore, it is more likely that a pro builder will consume less than their daily requirement, as opposed to them overdosing.
In the last minute effort to drop water weight to fit the weight goal in a contest, a bodybuilder could resort to diuretics, which actually reduce the number of fluids in the kidney, and in turn, increase the level of sodium in the body.
Sources of Potassium
The best way to get your daily intake of potassium is through fresh vegetables and fruits. The daily recommendation is 4,700 mg, which you can five portions of fruits and vegetables per day, all of which you can get from readily available fresh produce.
Potatoes (sweet and ordinary), bananas, oranges, strawberries, tomatoes, avocados, dairy products low in fat, spinach, beans, and peas, dried dates, and apricots are excellent sources of this vital mineral.