Authors: George L Bakris, MD, Barbara Olendzki, RD, MPH, LDN | Content provided by UpToDate.com.
Potassium is a mineral that is found in many foods. It keeps the heart beating regularly, helps to maintain fluid balance, and allows the nerves and muscles to work properly.
The kidneys are the main organ that controls the correct level of potassium in the blood. People who take certain medicines or who have chronic kidney disease must sometimes, under the direction of their clinician, limit the amount of potassium in their diet to keep their potassium level close to normal.
This article will discuss the normal level of potassium, how it is measured in the blood, and how to eat a low-potassium diet. A discussion of other treatments for chronic kidney disease is available separately.