Electrolyte Supplements: Yes or No?

March 04, 2020 7 min read

Electrolyte Supplements: Yes or No?

First and foremost everyone NEEDS electrolytes!

Do you have to get them from supplements? No.

Does it make it much easier? Yes.

Many people believe that electrolyte supplements are only for athletes or those that are physically active. They are necessary for EVERYONE, as they aid in nutrient absorption as well as creating an internal balance, so the body’s cells function properly.

With those simple statements, you might be asking yourself why we titled this article “electrolyte supplements: helpful or not?” There is one reason, in particular, and that’s the quality of electrolyte supplements on the market today! Have you ever looked at how much sugar is in some of the well-known sports drinks out there?

Often, people associate sports drinks with electrolytes, as they are believed to replenish what is lost during physical activity. Many of these sports drinks have a lot of sugar (basically the same as a soda), and therefore, do not provide benefits to the body. Did you know that added sugar feeds bad bacteria in your gut and raises inflammation, while artificial sweeteners and colors destroy the good bacteria in your gut? Also be sure to check the dosages of these so called sports drinks. They are basically using trace amounts of electrolytes, if any at all. These are some of the reasons why you should be aware of what is marketed regarding electrolyte replenishment. 

We mentioned that everyone, no matter their age, needs electrolytes. You might be wondering what electrolytes are and why you might want to supplement them. Let’s take a closer look at them before we move on to evaluating some electrolyte supplements on the market today. The word electrolyte is derived from Greek word lytós, meaning “able to be untied or loosened.” Electrolytes dissolve (or become loosened/untied) in the fluid in your body and take on a positive or negative charge. Essentially, they are minerals in your body that have an electric charge.

They can then move electrical charges or signals throughout the body as they conduct electricity. They are in most of your body fluids including blood, urine and tissues. They are important because they help balance the amount of water in your body as well as the acidity (pH level) in your body. Electrolytes are responsible for balancing the levels of fluid between the cells and the rest of your body. They also play a role in muscle contractions (including heartbeat!), transmitting signals between cells, blood clotting and tissue building. You can see why they are so important! We will look at the main electrolytes and how they work in your body next.

Electrolytes

The six main electrolytes are: sodium, chloride, calcium, magnesium, phosphate, and potassium. Each electrolyte has primary functions within your body:

  • Sodium: aids in controlling fluids in the body, impacts blood pressure; essential to muscle and nerve function
  • Potassium: heart and blood pressure regulation; aids in balancing electrolytes; helps transmit nerve impulses; contributes to bone health; necessary for muscle contraction
  • Chloride: helps balance electrolytes; creates balance in acidity and alkalinity which assists in maintaining a healthy pH; essential to digestion
  • Calcium: key component of bones and teeth; necessary for the movement of nerve impulses and muscle movement; blood clotting contributor
  • Magnesium: essential to the production of DNA and RNA; contributes to nerve and muscle function; assists in maintaining heart rhythm; helps regulate blood glucose levels; enhances immune system function
  • Phosphate: strengthens bones and teeth; essential for cells to produce the energy that is needed for tissue growth and repair

It is clear by looking at this information that it is necessary to keep up with your electrolyte intake. Imbalances are often caused by situations within the body that induce loss of fluids. In the case of illness, vomiting and diarrhea or fever can cause fluid loss. Sweating usually happens with physical activity or exposure to intense heat. More severe causes include medications or chronic respiratory issues. Not eating or drinking enough can also cause an imbalance. What happens in the body when an imbalance occurs? There are many symptoms but some of the most common are: headaches, muscle weakness, nausea, vomiting, problems with blood pressure, and more.

What can you do to ensure you maintain balance in your body? Make sure that you are consuming electrolytes to replace ones that are lost. Electrolytes are usually not easily found in your diet. Sodium (salt) is the exception as most people do get enough of this, but it is also very easily lost, as mentioned above. This is why it is imperative to find a high quality, clean (free of artificial ingredients), electrolyte supplement. In our comparison of electrolyte supplements: helpful or not, we looked for not only the main electrolytes, but also sugar content and vitamin C. If you are considering an electrolyte supplement, it is beneficial to find one that supports your whole body and well-being!

One thing to be careful of with electrolyte supplements is the amount of sugar and artificial ingredients they can contain. Sports drinks (which many people often think of as electrolyte supplements) often contain artificial ingredients including: sucralose, acesulfame potassium, aspartame, the dyes including: yellow number 5 and blue number 1, as well as a wide array of artificial flavors. We mentioned this subject in our introduction and we will continue to explore this as we compare electrolyte supplements.

Top Notch Nutrition: HYDRATE

Hydrate is an essential supplement for people of all ages. It is a custom formulation inspired by professional athletes, but designed for the average everyday person. Hydrate was custom formulated for everyone to have success. Yes, it has all your essential electrolytes, but it is so much more than that. It promotes gut health, protects your organs, promotes muscle preservation and recovery, helps your body better absorb needed nutrients and boosts your immune system! Like we said this is not your typical hydration supplement.This product goes above and beyond when it comes to supporting your entire body.

We mentioned that this is a great product for all ages, and this includes your kids! It is very common for kids to regularly consume sport drinks. They will often have them after school for practice, during games or even just playing with friends. Many sports drinks contain a lot of sugar and have artificial ingredients (usually in the form of dye to give it fancy coloring). Think of your kids having that much sugar late in the day, or even before a big game. There WILL be a sugar crash and it could come at the worst time. Their performance is much better off without added sugar. Hydrate is great option for not only their performance and recovery but the entire well-being of their little bodies! It does not contain any sugar or artificial ingredients. If your kids are using sports drinks with artificial sweeteners or loads of sugar (i.e. Gatorade, Powerade) it is killing their performance. Many sport drinks on the market are, for the most part, just sugar drinks.

Benefits of Hydrate include: ensuring proper hydration, increasing athletic performance, helping with recovery after exercise, promoting lean muscle growth and preservation, supporting immune system, promoting gut health, helping to protect organs, healthy complexion, joint support.   It is easy to make, just add one scoop to 16 to 20 ounces of cold water and stir or shake. It’s that easy! You will find your body will be properly hydrated within 10 to 15 minutes of consuming. You can use Hydrate first thing in the morning to start your day properly hydrated, during your workout for muscle preservation and hydration, post workout for muscle recover and immune boosting, or anytime you need a deliciously hydrating treat.

Hydrate is dairy free, gluten free and keto friendly. In Hydrate you will not find any artificial flavors or sweeteners. It is sweetened with 100 percent natural stevia leaf which means it contains ZERO SUGAR. You can see from the table above that Hydrate contains these electrolytes: magnesium, potassium, sodium and calcium! This really is a “top notch” product with the perfect combination of ingredients that will not only help with hydration but also provide countless benefits to your entire body including:

  • Coconut powder – a good source of many nutrients including: fiber, protein, vitamin C, magnesium, manganese, potassium, sodium and calcium.
  • Himalayan pink salt – highest quality sodium source, it is harvested by hand and therefore can contain trace elements and minerals not found in regular table salt.
  • L-Glutamine – an amino acid that has many imperative functions in the body. Hydrate contains 1000mg of Glutamine per serving. L-Glutamine is the most abundant amino acid present in your system. It makes up between 30-35% of the amino acid nitrogen you find in your bloodstream. L-Glutamine helps to heal leaky gut, improves brain health, helps promote lean muscle growth, decreases recover times, improves immune system, can help reduce inflammation, promotes hearth health & can even reduce stress.
  • BCAAs – branch chain amino acids are the building blocks for protein synthesis and muscle recovery. You will find 5,000 mg of BCAAs in Hydrate. BCAAs are a group of three essential amino acids: leucine, isoleucine and valine. BCAA supplements are commonly taken in order to boost muscle growth and enhance exercise performance. They may also help with weight loss and reduce fatigue after exercise.
  • Vitamin C – cannot be produced in the body and therefore needs to be consumed in your diet whether it is through your food or a dietary supplement. The vitamin C is sourced from organic oranges.
  • Essential electrolytes – magnesium, potassium, calcium and sodium.

Hydrate replenishes, recovers, and restores. When you think of Top Notch Nutrition, think of nutrition on a mission. Every product, including Hydrate, is designed and manufactured with high quality, clean ingredients. You will never find genetically modified ingredients in any of the products. There is no compromise on making the best, most effective products possible. If you’re looking for a great electrolyte supplement that promotes overall body health, we think you might like to give Hydrate a try. You can try it in 3 amazing flavors, here!