What is Electrolyte Water and What are the Benefits?

October 26, 2021
Fitness & Lifestyle

It’s already common knowledge that drinking water can provide your body with a great deal of health benefits. This includes regulating your body temperature and blood pressure to aiding digestion and weight loss. It can also help make way for better mood, memory, productivity and sleeping patterns.

But while these benefits are already one too many, some people are still left wondering whether they can double the amount of the benefits. Enter the electrolyte water — a type of water drink that is packed with different minerals that can help facilitate important bodily functions.

In this article, we take a closer look at what exactly is behind this water drink and its different benefits known to the human body.

WHAT ARE ELECTROLYTES?

Before we dive deeper into the advantages and benefits of drinking this type of water, let’s first unpack what it’s actually made of.

Electrolytes are minerals that come in the form of sodium, potassium and magnesium and calcium. Whether you drink tap water or bottled water, traces of these minerals can be found in the actual drink — although in relatively low amounts.

But when it comes to electrolytes in drinks, the concentration of these elements exist in higher amounts, making them an ideal choice for people wanting to use their electrical energy to promote important bodily functions. These include balancing the amount of water in the body, balancing the body’s pH level, regulating nerves, muscles, heart and brain functionality and many more.

This is a reason why electrolyte drinks are often packaged and marketed as performance-enhancing sports drinks. However these sports drinks are usually also high in sugar and calories, making them a counterproductive choice for people engaging in sports and high-adrenaline activities to lose weight.

THE BENEFITS OF ELECTROLYTE WATER

IT CAN IMPROVE EXERCISE PERFORMANCE

When doing any strenuous physical activity, the body needs a lot of fluids to keep your system afloat and fully functioning. This is because water is used by the body to replace the water that ultimately gets converted into sweat.

So significant is the importance of this rule that a water loss of 1-2% can cause you to experience decreased strength, speed and focus in physical activities.

That’s why in order to replace the sweat and water that you inevitably lose under these activities, it is recommended by a lot of experts that you drink electrolyte water. So whether you’re working out, running a difficult physical errand or just staying all day under the sun, make sure to drink electrolyte-infused water.

IT CAN HELP YOUR BODY REHYDRATE DURING AN ILLNESS

When you’re down with an illness, your body needs a lot of fluids to replenish the water that you lose to properly function. And since vomiting and diarrhea are two of the most common effects whenever you’re down with a serious illness, these can take an increased toll on your body’s hydration requirements.

That’s why for severe cases of illnesses with these effects, doctors are quick to recommend drinking electrolyte water to prevent the risk of extreme dehydration. This is especially relevant to infants and children — two age groups that are especially vulnerable to severe vomiting and diarrhea when sick.

However, if these symptoms still persist after 24 hours of taking electrolyte fluids, it’s always best to consult a medical professional right away for proper guidance and prescription.

IT SUPPORTS THE NERVOUS SYSTEM FUNCTION

Hydration is an important aspect in keeping your body’s nervous system running. Even the slightest dip in your body’s hydration levels can result in reduced cognitive abilities, including poor focus and concentration and lack of alertness.

Since the nervous system functions by sending different types of signals to your brain and body, drinking water is an essential part in order to keep it functioning well. When it comes to electrolytes, here are the ways that can make that happen:

  • Sodium - responsible for initiating the electrical impulses your nerve cells need for you to be able to communicate properly
  • Potassium - neutralizes the nerve cell to reinitiate subsequent electrical impulses
  • Magnesium - makes way for the effective transmission of electrical impulses in the system

IT CAN HELP PREVENT HEAT STROKE

When your body is exposed to warmer temperatures, it tries to cope by releasing the heat out of your skin through sweating. But when exposed for a prolonged period of time, it can result in dangerously high temperature levels. Worse? A heatstroke.

To combat the adverse effects of extreme heat and exhaustion, it’s recommended to drink electrolyte fluids in large amounts. This, coupled with the conscious effort to avoid being exposed directly under the sun, can help your body cool down and regulate itself for the rest of the day.

ARE ELECTROLYTE DRINKS GOOD FOR YOU?

Electrolytes are a good choice if you want to provide your body with the necessary minerals at double the amount of those found in regular H2O. However, it’s still important to understand that electrolyte beverages should never replace regular water as your normal drinking liquid of choice.

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