Definition of potassium in English:



mass noun
  • The chemical element of atomic number 19, a soft silvery-white reactive metal of the alkali metal group.

    Potassium is a member of the alkali metal group, and its compounds occur widely in minerals and in seawater. The metal itself has few uses, but its compounds are used in the manufacture of fertilizers, soaps, and glass. In the body, potassium ions are involved in the transmission of nerve impulses and are an important constituent of the fluid within cells

    • ‘This does not happen, however, because the cell membrane itself is impermeable to ions like sodium and potassium.’
    • ‘For example, lithium, sodium, and potassium comprised a triad of soft, highly reactive metals.’
    • ‘He should incorporate a salad, as the magnesium and potassium will help counteract the sodium.’
    • ‘If you tend to be susceptible to cramps, try eating more foods that are high in potassium and calcium.’
    • ‘Patients no longer needed extra sodium and restricted potassium.’
    • ‘The plants are sustained by water, enriched with calcium, potassium, nitrogen and other fertilisers.’
    • ‘It also involves the loss of important blood salts like potassium and sodium.’
    • ‘He worked on light metal alloys and the electrolytic production of potassium and sodium.’
    • ‘Diuretics reduce fluid retention in the body by encouraging the removal of salts such as potassium and sodium from the blood.’
    • ‘In that case potassium rather than sodium is exchanged with calcium and magnesium.’
    • ‘Nitrate crusts of potassium and calcium nitrate are most often found in caves and rock shelters in limestone areas.’
    • ‘He says a complete plant food with plenty of trace elements especially potassium and nitrogen and water it well in.’
    • ‘It is high in vitamins A and E, calcium and potassium, and low in calories.’
    • ‘These will include blood samples to find out levels of sodium, chloride, potassium and urea.’
    • ‘The second most abundant ion was potassium, followed by sodium, magnesium, manganese and iron.’
    • ‘Calcium and potassium are two of the top nutrients of concern in Americans' diets.’
    • ‘Its high potassium, phosphorus and calcium help maintain high energy levels.’
    • ‘In a chemical sense, soap is a salt made up of a carboxylic acid and an alkali like sodium of potassium.’
    • ‘At the same time we consume about a third less potassium, so that the ratio of potassium to sodium has shifted quite dramatically.’
    • ‘Sodium, potassium and blood sugar levels were estimated using standard methods.’


Early 19th century: from potash (earlier potass, from French potasse) + -ium.