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High Potassium Diet

Date issued: August 2022

Review date: August 2024

Ref: Ref: C-235/Dietetics/HS/high potassium diet v2

Ref:  High potassium diet final August 2022 v2.pdf [pdf] 136KB

When your kidneys are not working properly it can affect the balance of minerals in your blood, including potassium.

If there is too much or too little potassium in your blood it can be dangerous for your heart.

The healthy range for blood potassium is 3.5 to 5.5 mmol/l (4 to 6 mmol/l if you are on haemodialysis).  Your potassium level will be monitored regularly to ensure this diet is suitable for you.

This leaflet explains the changes you can make to your diet if your potassium levels are too low

Try to include plenty of the following foods in your diet:


Milk and milk products are high in potassium:

  • Yoghurts

  • Milk puddings

  • Custard                        

  • Evaporated milk

  • Condensed milk

  • Milk powder

Fruit and vegetables:

All fruit and vegetables contain potassium, but the following are particularly high:  fruit and vegetables        


Dried fruit e.g., sultanas, raisins, apricots, dates

Beans and pulses e.g., baked beans, lentils




Tomatoes, sundried tomatoes

Cherries, grapes




Tropical fruit e.g., pineapple, mango, papaya

Green leafy vegetables e.g., cabbage, spinach, kale

Cooking vegetables:

  • Leave skins on vegetables where possible

  • Boil in a very small amount of water, steam microwave vegetables, this will prevent loss of potassium during cooking

  • Use vegetable water for gravy sauces and soups.


Potato and potato products are high in potassium, especially:

  • Baked potatoes

  • Roast potatoes

  • Chips (oven chips are healthier than deep fried chips)

  • Instant mashed potato

  • Potato waffles, croquettes, hash browns

When boiling potatoes, use a small amount of water or steam

High potassium snacks and sweets:

  • Potato crisps

  • Nuts (unsalted)            

  • Chocolate biscuits or cake

  • Fruit cake, fruited scones, tea cakes

  • Chocolate

  • Liquorice

  • Marzipan

Note: these foods should only be taken in small amounts if you have diabetes, or you are trying to lose weight

High potassium cereals:


  • All Bran®

  • Any cereals containing dried fruit and nuts

High potassium drinks:

  • Coffee

  • Cocoa, drinking chocolate

  • Malted milk drinks e.g., Horlicks®, Ovaltine® 

  • Fruit and vegetable juices, smoothies


  • Tomato puree, sundried tomato paste

  • Peanut butter

  • Chocolate spread

  • Pesto


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