Potassium is a chemical element with the symbol K and atomic number 19. It is a soft, silvery-white metal that belongs to the alkali metal group of the periodic table. Potassium is highly reactive, meaning it readily forms compounds with other elements and is not found in nature as a free metal.
Potassium is an essential nutrient for many organisms, including humans. It plays a critical role in regulating fluid balance, nerve impulses, and muscle contractions. Potassium is also important for maintaining a healthy heart, as it helps to regulate heart rhythm and blood pressure.
Good dietary sources of potassium include bananas, potatoes, spinach, avocados, and tomatoes. Most people can meet their potassium needs through a balanced diet, but in some cases, potassium supplements may be necessary.
Excessive potassium intake can be harmful, particularly for people with kidney problems. High levels of potassium in the blood can cause irregular heartbeats and other serious health problems. Therefore, it is important to talk to a healthcare provider before taking potassium supplements or making significant changes to your diet.