#36alive 159: Up Your Electrolytes

Low electrolyte levels can cause an irregular heartbeat, muscular weakness, dizziness, irritability, muscle twitches, changes in blood pressure, and even seizures. If you know you don’t drink enough water, you could have an electrolyte imbalance, but confusingly, it can also be cause by drinking too much water, or having an imbalance of potassium, sodium, calcium or magnesium.

sweating-better-workoutBalancing your electrolyte levels is a little more complex than simply drinking more water; it requires taking in specific nutrients, and ensuring the water you drink is properly absorbed into your body.

Electrolytes are essential to proper functioning of the human body, and those with kidney issues or diabetes are more likely to experience difficulty in balancing them. An imbalance can occur during diarrhoea, sweating, or vomiting. Elderly people are more at risk of electrolyte deficiency too – so make sure you check in on granny this Summer to make sure she’s getting plenty of water, and some of these natural electrolytes!:

banana2Potassium

Banana, dates, raisins, coconut avocado, squash, dark leafy greens, yoghurt, mushrooms. Watermelon is also a great source of replenishing potassium – and Beyonce loves it so much, she’s even invested in watermelon juice company WTRMLN WTR. If it’s good enough for Beyonce it’s good enough for us….

 

Sodium

Good quality salt: Pink Himalayan mountain salt is far more widely available these days, and contains an abundance of minerals. Drinking a small amount of salt with water can actually allow it to become more readily absorbed and utilised by the body, and in salt#36alive 24 you’ll find all the science and tips on using salt and water together.

Celery, artichokes, beetroot, seaweed, carrots, dairy products, peanut butter

 

Calcium

Dark leafy greens, raw milk and kefir, broccoli, watercress, bok choy, sardines, edamame, oranges, figs,

 

magnesium-rich-foodsMagnesium

Spinach, chard, pumpkin seeds, yoghurt and kefir, almonds, black beans, fish, whole grains, avocado, dark chocolate, dried fruit,

 

Are You Actually Drinking Too Much Water?…….

Drinking too much water can cause the body’s cells to become diluted, meaning the various nutrients that make up electrolytes are watered down and aren’t able to function properly. They become flushed out of the body with the inevitable increased urine levels that come with drinking lots of water, and cause those worrying symptoms of electrolyte imbalance. If you keep a water bottle next to you all the time, are constantly guzzling down water, or get up multiple times during the night to use the bathroom, consider deciding whether you actually need to drink water before you sip….

So, when the weather heats up, or if you’re planning on jetting off to a hot and sunny destination, remember to drink enough water, and include these electrolyte-rich foods in your diet!

 

 

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