Potassium is an essential nutrient in the American diet. It's also a nutrient that most people don't get enough of - so much so that it was identified as a nutrient of concern in the USDA's 2010 Dietary Guidelines. In fact, concern has reached international levels as the World Health Organization recently released its first ever recommendation for potassium intake citing overwhelming evidence that increasing potassium intake (along with decreasing sodium intake) can lower blood pressure and reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease, stroke and coronary heart disease. Currently, just 3 percent of the U.S. population is meeting the U.S. recommended intake for potassium of 4,700 mg per day.
Although there are many sources of potassium in the produce aisle, potatoes are among the very best. Not only do potatoes rank highest for potassium among the 20 top-selling fruits and vegetables, but they are also the most affordable source of this key nutrient, providing significantly better nutritional value per dollar than most other raw vegetables and fruits. In fact, at just 110 calories, one medium-size (5.3 ounce) skin-on potato has more potassium than a banana, provides almost half the daily value of vitamin C and is sodium-, fat- and cholesterol-free. For more potato information and healthy potato recipe ideas, visit www.potatogoodness.com.