Cashews are delicious, filling, and also incredibly nutritious. They’re also very easy to add to most diets as you can incorporate them in salads, meat dishes, or even eat them as a snack.
But if you follow a strict diet, which, for example, requires you to limit how much potassium you consume, you might wonder whether it’s safe for you to eat cashews. So, are cashews high in potassium? Can they be a part of a low-potassium diet?
Are Cashews High In Potassium?
On average, a single serving of cashews contains less than 200mg of potassium, which means cashews are not high in potassium and are suitable for a low-potassium diet. Cashews won’t cause health issues in people dealing with diabetes and kidney issues.
This type of nut is incredibly nutritious, too, containing many essential nutrients, minerals, and vitamins that help you stay healthy and fight off many serious health conditions. Because of all that, they are a great addition to any balanced diet.
How much potassium is in cashews?
The most common variety of cashews sold on the market are dry or oil roasted. They don’t differ much in their potassium content, both containing around 158mg of this mineral in a one-ounce serving.
As a rule of thumb, for a food to be considered low-potassium, it must contain less than 200mg per one serving. This means that cashews are a relatively safe food to consume on a low-potassium diet, and they also shouldn’t worsen your symptoms.
Unfortunately, it’s also important to remember that most people consume foods like nuts in higher quantities than just one ounce in a sitting. Because of that, the potassium can add up and cause problems in people with potassium sensitivity.
To avoid that, control your portion sizes carefully to avoid overeating, which is problematic due to the potassium content and since cashews are high in calories.
Are cashews good for you?
Cashews are one of the healthiest, most nutritious nuts out there. They contain an abundance of plant compounds and antioxidants that help your body flush out free radicals, preventing oxidative stress and damage to your cells.
Antioxidants are also responsible for reducing inflammation, which can help you fight off many digestive system issues. This can help with kidney issues as well, which people with potassium sensitivity are particularly susceptible to.
Another wonderful benefit of cashews is that they are very high in copper. A one-ounce serving contains 31% of your daily recommended need for this mineral, which is a lot considering the small portion. Together with iron, copper enables your body to form red blood cells, which help transport oxygen throughout your body.
This mineral also contributes to maintaining healthy bones, blood vessels, immune function, and iron absorption. Because of that, it’s important to consume foods high in copper daily.
Cashews are a very good source of magnesium, which helps enhance exercise performance and prevent muscle weakness after extensive training. If you work out a lot, a magnesium deficiency can also lead to muscle cramps, numbness, and tingling, leading to more severe issues if not addressed.
Because of that, many workout supplements are enriched with magnesium to prevent these problems from developing.
What’s more, this healthy nut is rich in unsaturated fats, which are linked to a lower risk of premature death and heart diseases. This category of fats is also a healthy way to stay full after a meal as fats help you feel satisfied, thus preventing overeating.
This can be beneficial if you’re dealing with acid reflux or even when you’re trying to lose weight. What’s more, along with protein – which cashews are also high in – unsaturated fats fuel your muscles, preventing muscle loss, especially when working out.
Even with all these benefits, there’s one major downside to consuming too many cashews: They’re very calorie-dense. This means they can lead to weight gain, especially since most people consume them in larger quantities than the recommended serving.
Rapid weight gain can worsen many health conditions, so it’s important to prevent that from happening. To do that, make sure to practice mindful eating and control your portions.
Is cashew butter high in potassium?
A single serving of one tablespoon of cashew butter contains around 87mg of potassium. It’s way lower than a single serving of roasted nuts, but many people use more than one tablespoon in a serving, so this number can increase.
Another thing about cashew butter is that it’s significantly lower in minerals and vitamins than raw cashews, so it’s not as nutritious. In fact, it provides mostly empty calories, so it’s best to use cashew butter sparingly.
RELATED: Is Peanut Butter High In Potassium?
Cashew butter often comes with many additives, including salt, worsening kidney, and digestive system issues. If too much sodium accumulates in your kidneys, they may have trouble removing it, leading to high blood pressure, increased risk of stroke, and other serious issues.
Because of that, you may want to make cashew butter yourself, which will allow you to make it as healthy as possible and without any added salt.
Can you take in too much potassium from cashews?
Since most people eat more than just an ounce of cashews in one sitting, the potassium content will add up. This is particularly problematic if your potassium sensitivity is severe as it’s very easy to overeat cashews.
To avoid that, try to buy pre-packaged cashews so that you can’t eat more than just a single portion. You can also buy a kitchen scale, which can help you control how many grams you’re actually eating.
Cashews are very nutritious and rich in many vitamins and minerals. They’re also not too high in potassium, so you can eat them even if you suffer from kidney issues or diabetes. On the downside, they’re very caloric and easy to overindulge in.
This means they can lead to weight gain unless you use portion control and follow an otherwise healthy, balanced diet. If you do that, there’s no reason not to enjoy an occasional serving of cashews.
MORE RELATED INFORMATION
Don’t know which foods are high in potassium? Read our article 15 Best Food Sources Of Potassium. We also have a guide on this important mineral: Potassium 101: All You Need To Know About Potassium.
Alicia is the senior content editor and writer here at Food FAQ. She has extensive experience with acid reflux, heartburn, GERD, and various supplements. When not eating food for “research”, she’s watching “Friends” for the 100th time.