Potassium is responsible for several key functions in your body. It works closely with other electrolyte minerals, like sodium and calcium, to stabilize fluid levels. This process maintains a smooth electrical current throughout your body, which keeps your heart beating and makes muscles contract. You’ll get at least some potassium from nearly every food in your diet, including celery.
Amount in Celery
Since some stalks of celery are wide, while others are skinny, you might get a more accurate potassium count if you weigh your food. For example, a small 4-inch strip, like something that would accompany a plate of buffalo wings, weighs roughly 4 grams. A piece of celery this size has 10 milligrams of potassium. A small 5-inch stalk, weighing 17 grams, provides nearly 45 milligrams of potassium. You’ll get more than 165 milligrams of potassium from a large 11- to 12-inch stalk that weighs 64 grams.
You need to get 4,700 milligrams of potassium each day, according to the Linus Pauling Institute. This recommendation starts at age 14 and follows you throughout the rest of your life. The only time your recommendation increases is while breast-feeding, but not while you’re pregnant. In this case, you’ll need to get 5,100 milligrams on a daily basis.
Too Much Potassium
You’re unlikely to overdose on potassium just from eating a lot of potassium-rich foods. Even a large stalk of celery has less than 4 percent of your needs for the day. You’d most likely never eat enough celery to go way over your daily requirement. However, you can get too much potassium from supplements. Typically you have to get potassium supplements through a prescription, but multivitamin supplements do have a small amount. Potassium toxicity causes kidney distress, problems with red blood cells, and severe tissue damage.
Getting More Potassium
If you love celery, eating it with other potassium-rich foods further adds to your intake. Peanut butter — a delicious celery topper — has more than 240 milligrams of potassium in a 2-tablespoon serving. Topping your peanut butter-stuffed celery stalk with one-quarter cup of raisins adds more than 300 milligrams of potassium to your snack. Some varieties of salad dressing, which makes a perfect dipping sauce, have as much as 100 milligrams of the mineral. Enjoy a glass of ice-cold tomato juice with your stick of celery. You’ll get more than 300 milligrams of potassium from 8 ounces of tomato juice.
- USDA National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference: Celery, Raw
- Linus Pauling Institute: Potassium
- USDA National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference: Peanut Butter, Smooth, Reduced Fat
Important Notice: This article was originally published at www.healthyeating.sfgate.com by Melodie Anne where all credits are due.