It's easy not to take heed of the importance of electrolytes, however there are consequences for ignoring an imbalance of them in our bodies. Here we talk about what they are, how important they are to the human body and how you can make sure you always maintain a healthy balance.
What are Electrolytes?
Electrolytes are certain nutrients or salts that perform many important functions. These salts become charged molecules, called ions, when dissolved in liquid. Their electrical charges and ability to conduct electricity assist the body in conveying electrical signals from one cell to another. There are many different types, but the 7 major ones are:
- Sodium (Na+)
- Chloride (Cl-)
- Potassium (K+)
- Magnesium (Mg++)
- Calcium (Ca++)
- Phosphate (HPO4–)
- Bicarbonate (HCO3-)
Electrolytes Are Not Optional
Electrolytes maintain the electric voltage throughout your cells so that signals can pass easily. Several bodily functions are dependent on this electrical communication that they help carry. They include regulating nerve and muscle function, acidity levels and fluid levels.
The most prominent reason athletes need to think about replacing electrolytes is because they are lost from the body through sweat. Sodium and potassium are lost in the greatest amounts via sweat, while magnesium and chloride are lost in only small amounts.
An altered level of magnesium, sodium, potassium, or calcium may produce one or more of the following symptoms:
- Irregular heartbeat
- Bone disorders
- Blood pressure changes
- Nervous system disorders
- Fatigue, lethargy
- Muscle spasm.
Maintaining a balance
Electrolytes are found in a well-balanced diet that is rich in vegetables and fruit. During exercise the balance of electrolytes in your body can be changed easily by sweating. Athletes should always look at replenishing them on a regular basis during exercise but it can be difficult at times to chew on a piece of fruit.
Drinking sports drinks that are well formulated with a range of electrolytes are the best option during exercise and NutriScience has got you covered. Our Electrolyte Rush products are designed to give your body what it needs exactly when it needs it. The dual-carbohydrate formula maximises their absorption, while the addition of Carnitine improves fat metabolism.
Electrolytes and their importance to the human body is undeniable. The body functions and systems they support are vitally extensive. It is difficult for our bodies to survive without them. But with NutriScience and our Extend products you will never have to worry about that.