How concerned should I be about my potassium intake?
According to nutritionfacts.org, I should be consuming at least 4700 mg per day. My target level in Cronometer is lower, at 3400 mg per day.
I'm a very sporadic user of Cronometer, so I cannot tell you how much my potassium consumption fluctuates on a daily basis. Yesterday was one of the days I tracked my food intake, and I clocked in at 3586.3 mg of potassium (105% of target), 2071.8 calories, 62.4 grams of fiber (164% of target), and 736.5 mg of magnesium (175% of target). Fortunately, I consumed only 1326.1 mg of sodium yesterday. So my potassium/sodium ratio was around 2.7.
While I'm eating considerably less food now than I was back in February, I'll be eating a few hundred calories per day less in the months ahead. Cold weather inflates my appetite, and hot weather deflates it. Back in February, my daily nutritional intake was more like 5500 to 6000 mg of potassium, 2700 to 3000 calories, 80 to 90 grams of fiber, and 900 to 1000 mg of magnesium.
The requirement for potassium is an "AI" which means that we don't know exactly how much potassium people need; we just make an educated guess.
It's also unlikely that a tiny person needing only ~1400-1500 calories per day will need as much potassium as a 6'4", 200 lbs male.
I'd encourage you to aim for ~75-80% of the potassium AI, knowing that more is better.
Susan Macfarlane, MScA, RD
Registered Dietitian Nutritionist
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