Majority of us have already hear the word “electrolytes” before, whether you actually know what it is or not. Perhaps we heard it from school before or at from people at random. But, if you are an athlete, you must have heard about it more often than the rest of us. Most of us would only know about electrolytes when we are already diagnosed of an imbalance and are being treated for an illness or condition related to the imbalance.
Electrolytes, including magnesium, calcium, sodium, chloride, potassium, bicarbonate, and phosphate are substances that are naturally-occurring and exist in the human body. When the body loses some of these electrolytes, it suffers an imbalance. This imbalance causes terrible effects on the body. Click here to learn more about electrolyte imbalance.
Why is it important?
You must have experienced leg cramps at one moment in your life – either when you have a long-distance walk or when you jog or run or while swimming. If you have experienced this, you will already have known why electrolytes are important. Electrolytes are minerals that are responsible for the formation of ions in your body fluids. It is an important part of a number of processes in the body and their levels must stay balanced. If not, complications will ensue.
Sometimes death can result from this imbalances, but very rare. It is very important that signs and symptoms of these imbalances are noticed right away, especially in older adults and children.
Loss of body fluids most often happens during sweating, but sometimes it happens during an illness. Dehydration or improper hydration and improper diet also contribute to these imbalances; thus, the reason why people would want to try to supplement their intake of this substance to make sure that they are not too far from the healthy range.
When you feel like your body is losing fluids and you already have an imbalance or going to have an imbalance, it would be smart to supplement. There are a lot of electrolyte drinks that can help supplement your body with what it has lost. You just have to choose the right kind of drink or supplements. For most parents or athletes, an important drawback they have on mainstream supplement beverages is that they contain sugar in them. These beverages may taste pleasant to the palate but they are actually are not healthy – electrolytes and sugar do not match.
Electrolytes and Sugar
Actually, this two when mixed is not anything dangerous, unless one has allergies to one of the components in the beverage taken. The problem is when they contain other filler ingredients such as different types of sugars, artificial flavors and colors, and others that they put into the beverage, but have no benefits whatsoever to the electrolyte levels in your body.
When the body needs to be rehydrated, it merely needs fresh and clean water. Sites like https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Management_of_dehydration discusses management of rehydration. But when it needs restoration of the electrolyte balance, it needs bio-available forms of electrolytes that can be absorbed and be useful to it. And all the other stuff that manufacturers put into the energy drinks on the shelves are elements you do not need – and which you should stop using or buying.
Kids would need the sugar in their rehydrating drinks to make it more palatable, but adults must look for healthier alternatives. Adults do not need sugar-heavy energy drinks, they need something that would re-hydrate and replace the fluids efficiently and bring back the electrolyte levels back to normal.
Electrolyte Drinks – No Sugar Added
In choosing your energy drink alternative, look for the sugar-free options. Grocery shelves are lined with all kinds of energy drinks, choosing the best is sometimes difficult.
You must consider if you need something water-based or something flavored. When you want something natural, there are also varieties that are plant-based that offer a wholesome goodness that the synthetic versions do not have. It can rehydrate at an optimum level and at the same time taste naturally good. Choosing versions that come from natural ingredients such as natural fruit juices and even coconut water can make a difference in the taste – you focus on replenishing the nutrients you have lost but you need not worry about shoving a lot of synthetics into your system. With the plant-based and natural juices, you can be ensured that you are taking in good and healthy beverages.
Sugar-free energy drinks can re-hydrate just like those with sugar added, but without having to worry about complications that may arise due to the increased sugar intake. Especially if you have been diagnosed of diabetes, you should be drinking sugar free electrolyte drinks when you need to replenish your electrolytes.
Drinks that are made out of natural fruit juices or coconut water are palatable and has sweetness enough to make a pleasant taste. These are also tolerated more by the body and avoid unnecessary additional sugar in the blood. However, those with prevalent health conditions must consult their physicians before experimenting on energy drinks. Precautions still are important.