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According to a research article published by the British Medical Journal, potassium, one of the main essential minerals required by the body to function, is said to reduce the risk of a heart attack and brain attack or what is commonly known as stroke. Along with an increased intake of potassium-rich foods, it is also necessary to control or lessen the consumption of foods rich in sodium or salt.
A stroke is a brain condition wherein a blood clot obstructs an artery. This then interrupts the proper circulation of blood through the entire system hence, resulting to brain damage which causes parts of the body to malfunction.

Defining potassium

Potassium, as what was previously stated, is a vital mineral to promote proper bodily functions. It is a considerably important electrolyte that sends pulses of electricity through the body which results to a normal heart and nerve function and the contraction of the skeletal and smooth muscles. When potassium is evenly distributed within the system on a daily basis, all the muscles in the body, most especially the heart and the digestive system, works appropriately.

Indications of potassium intake

Potassium must not be taken more or less than the dietary recommendation for this may result to certain complications like irregular heart rhythms and paralysis. Hyperkalemia is the term given to high levels of potassium in the blood while hypokalemia is the opposite. A person must have at least two servings of potassium-rich food, like fruits and vegetables, every day to ensure ample amount of potassium in the body.

Defining sodium

Sodium, on the other hand, is another important mineral that our body needs. However, it serves more harm than good. Sodium is found in majority of what you eat. Its main purpose is to attract water thus, regulating fluid within the body. High intake of sodium is considered to be detrimental due to the fact that, in high amounts, leads to several diseases like heart failure and stroke, kidney failure and cancer.

Potassium and sodium on stroke risk

Potassium and salt are two opposing forces. Therefore, if a person would choose to have a considerate meal, meaning having a higher potassium intake and a lower sodium intake, it can lead to promising health outcomes like a lower risk of stroke. Potassium works as a conductor of energy and impulse radiating throughout the system while sodium, due to its nature, tends to hinder this proper functioning.

Consuming appropriately

The World Health Organization (WHO) strongly suggests that a person should consume at least 4 grams or 3510 mg of potassium daily. Fruits like avocados and bananas, vegetables like broccoli and spinach, dairy products like yogurt and specific types of fishes like cod and salmon are just some of the great sources of potassium. As for sodium, only 5 grams or one teaspoon a day is suitable.

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