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Why You Want Electrolytes | Dr. Kellyann

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Once you hear the phrase electrolyte, what involves thoughts? It appears most individuals know that they want electrolytes, particularly after a great sweat. However are you aware electrolytes are additionally essential after (and earlier than!) an evening of consuming? And that you simply additionally want electrolyte steadiness daily? 

If not, you’re not alone. So let me clarify…

What are electrolytes?

Electrolytes are minerals that dissolve in water in your physique and produce charged ions. Many important processes depend on {the electrical} present that’s created. 

The mineral electrolytes I’m referring to incorporate:

  • Sodium
  • Potassium
  • Chloride
  • Magnesium
  • Bicarbonate
  • Phosphorous

Now, earlier than I am going any additional, I wish to level out that — though the media would love you to suppose in any other case — sports activities drinks are NOT the one supply of those minerals. Actually, the electrolytes in lots of sports activities drinks come from refined salt and artificial sodium citrate and monopotassium phosphate. Plus, they include a bunch of different junk, akin to synthetic colours, modified corn starch, and sugar.

Why does your physique want electrolytes?

Sustaining a great steadiness of electrolytes is crucial to your well being, as a result of electrolytes mingle with one another and numerous different inside buildings to help with quite a lot of important features.

Key Features of Electrolytes

  • Sustaining optimum fluid steadiness, so your cells don’t explode or shrivel up
  • Regulating nerve perform, which permit your nerves (and different tissues) to ship and obtain essential alerts all through the physique
  • Contracting and enjoyable muscle tissue, together with your biceps and your coronary heart
  • Regulating the pH degree inside your blood

It’s additionally value noting that these minerals play many different essential roles within the physique along with appearing as electrolytes. As an example, calcium and magnesium are each crucial for robust bones and enamel. Calcium can also be concerned in blood clotting. And magnesium is concerned in over 300 organic processes, together with vitality manufacturing and DNA synthesis.

Electrolyte Steadiness Disruptors

You in all probability already know that your physique loses electrolytes via your sweat, which might result in an imbalance, particularly after intense or extended exercise. It is smart, then, that you simply’d wish to replenish your electrolytes after a exercise.

You might also expertise electrolyte imbalance when the climate is hotter, and, as I discussed above, after an evening of having fun with one too many cocktails, since your physique makes use of electrolytes to transform the toxins in alcohol and expel them via the urine.

What else causes electrolyte imbalance?

  • Not consuming sufficient water. Nevertheless, consuming an excessive amount of water, particularly within the absence of electrolytes, may also be an issue.
  • Fast fluid loss from frequent bouts of diarrhea or vomiting.
  • Kidney illness, as your kidneys are answerable for regulating the focus of electrolytes.
  • Poor vitamin. Processed junk meals incorporates only a few to no electrolytes. Alternatively, entire meals from nature are loaded with them.

Fast weight reduction may also result in an electrolyte imbalance, so paying shut consideration to your fluid and electrolyte consumption throughout weight reduction is essential.

What are the indicators of an electrolyte imbalance?

There are a variety of signs you possibly can expertise from an electrolyte imbalance. It actually relies on which electrolytes are out of whack, and whether or not your ranges are too excessive or too low. However typically, listed below are some widespread indicators:

  • Twitching
  • Weak point
  • Fatigue
  • Muscle spasms
  • Erratic heartbeat
  • Elevate or dip in blood stress
  • Disorientation
  • Numbness
  • Dizziness
  • Vomiting
  • Lack of consciousness
Dr. Kellyann Bone Broth

What are the healthiest methods to steadiness your electrolytes?

  1. DON’T DRINK GATORADE! (or any sports activities drink actually)
  2. As an alternative, drink a low-to-zero-sugar electrolyte drink, or, my private favourite, bone broth, which is a strong supply of hydration, protein, and minerals like potassium.
  3. Eat a nutrient-rich eating regimen full of colourful fruits and veggies, wild fish, nuts, seeds, and meats from wholesome, pasture-raised animals 
  4. Keep hydrated, particularly when temperatures are excessive
  5. Replenish after extended and/or intense train in addition to after fast fluid losses

What are one of the best sources of electrolytes for replenishment? 

Whereas all electrolytes are essential and should be consumed day by day, the 2 main electrolytes which can be misplaced via sweat embrace sodium and potassium. Nevertheless, for mild train, filtered water is commonly all you want so long as you’re additionally consuming a mineral wealthy eating regimen. 

When water isn’t sufficient, including ⅛ – ¼ teaspoon of sea salt to your water and consuming half of an avocado or a full banana will do the trick. Nevertheless, in case you add ⅛ – ¼ teaspoon of sea salt and a cup of spinach to your post-exercise shake, you’ll get a wholesome dose of sodium, calcium, magnesium, potassium, and phosphorus together with many different vitamins. Now that’s spectacular! 

Many individuals depend on coconut water, which is an alternative choice. It’s a good supply of potassium. And one cup gives roughly 250 mg of sodium. However after intense or extended train, particularly in heat climate, this won’t be sufficient for health buffs. And two cups ship fairly a little bit of sugar.

Bone Broth for “Pre-Gaming”

In the event you’re heading out for the night and also you anticipate to get pleasure from some good meals and cocktails, consuming bone broth earlier than you go will assist gasoline your physique with a great steadiness of vitamin… and it fills you up so you may very well find yourself consuming and consuming much less. Now, I’m not saying it’ll treatment or forestall hangovers, however by supplying your physique with important vitamins and electrolytes — which additionally help optimum intestine well being — you’re serving to your physique’s features carry out at their finest. 

Protecting your electrolytes balanced begins with being conscious of your actions, the climate, your fluid consumption and output, and extra. Take care to take care. It’s all about steadiness.

 

Dr. Kellyann

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