Harvard Heart Letter

Should I take a potassium supplement?

Ask the doctor

potassium melon
A cup of cantaloupe contains about 400 mg of potassium.
Image: Arisara_Tongdonnoi / Thinkstock

Q. I have high blood pressure, and a friend recommended that I take a potassium supplement. Is that a good idea, and if so, how much should I take?

A. This is a great question that comes up all the time—and with good reason, because potassium can be tricky. The short answer is no, you should not take potassium supplements unless your doctor prescribes them. Let me outline why below.

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