Potassium-Restricted Diet: Care Instructions

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Your Care Instructions

Potassium is a mineral. It helps keep the right mix of fluids in your body. It also helps your nerves and muscles work as they should.

Most people get the potassium they need from the foods they eat. But if you have certain health problems, such as kidney disease, you may need to be careful about how much potassium you get. This is because too much potassium can be harmful.

You can control how much potassium you get. You can do this if you eat foods that don't have much of it and you don't eat foods that have lots of it.

Follow-up care is a key part of your treatment and safety. Be sure to make and go to all appointments, and call your doctor if you are having problems. It's also a good idea to know your test results and keep a list of the medicines you take.

How can you care for yourself at home?

  • Limit foods that are high in potassium. Potassium is in many foods, such as vegetables, fruits, and milk products. High-potassium foods include:
    • Fruits such as bananas, oranges, and cantaloupe.
    • Tomatoes.
    • Broccoli.
    • Milk.
    • Spinach.
    • Potatoes and sweet potatoes.
  • Eat foods that don't have as much potassium. These low-potassium foods include:
    • Fruits such as applesauce, pineapple, grapes, blueberries, and raspberries.
    • Cucumbers.
    • White or brown rice.
    • Pasta and noodles.
    • Tortillas.
  • Do not use a salt substitute or "lite" salt unless you talk to your doctor first. These often are very high in potassium.
  • Be sure to tell your doctor about any prescription or over-the-counter medicines you are taking. Some medicines can increase the potassium in your body.

Where can you learn more?

Go to http://www.healthwise.net/patientEd

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The Health Encyclopedia contains general health information. Not all treatments or services described are covered benefits for Kaiser Permanente members or offered as services by Kaiser Permanente. For a list of covered benefits, please refer to your Evidence of Coverage or Summary Plan Description. For recommended treatments, please consult with your health care provider.