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What Are Electrolytes And Why Do We Need Them?

What Are Electrolytes And Why Do We Need Them?

You may have heard about electrolytes, they are commonly taken as supplements and found in sports and rehydration drinks! They are essential for a range of bodily functions and imbalances can have a detrimental effect on our health. Continue reading to learn more about the importance of electrolytes!

What Are Electrolytes?

Electrolytes are charged minerals that are found in our blood, sweat and urine. They are needed to maintain vital body functions, and are essential in the maintaining normal nervous system and muscle function, fluid balance, and pH levels. Essential electrolytes found in our bodies include sodium, potassium, calcium, bicarbonate, magnesium, chloride and phosphorus. 

Why Do We Need Electrolytes?

Electrolyte imbalances can lead to symptoms such as fever, shortness of breath, confusion, blood pressure changes, muscle spasms, fatigue and more! In severe cases an imbalance in electrolytes can be fatal! We can generally maintain adequate electrolyte levels by consuming a varied and balanced diet, but electrolyte levels can be disturbed by exercise, illnesses, and injuries.

Electrolyte supplements can be taken to replenish electrolyte losses and restore electrolyte balance. Electrolyte supplements may also have additional benefits, as studies have shown that taking a supplement containing electrolytes during exercise can help improve anaerobic power and strength! 

When Should You Take Electrolytes?

It is generally not necessary for the average person to take an electrolyte supplement daily. Electrolytes are commonly taken during or after exercise, as we lose a lot of electrolytes through sweat! During prolonged exercise electrolytes can help with rehydration and can also prevent muscle cramping.

Taking electrolytes can also help during heat stroke - hot weather can make us sweat more and lead to more electrolyte losses. Additionally, if you drink a lot of water in a short period of time to rehydrate, your electrolyte levels can become imbalanced and diluted. Although you should be rehydrating by drinking small amounts of water consistently, if you are drinking a lot of water in a short period of time it may be beneficial to take electrolytes alongside to avoid imbalances.

Certain illnesses that cause vomiting or diarrhoea can also lead to depletion of electrolytes, so taking a supplement can be a big help in recovering from illnesses like food poisoning.

The bottom line…

We all need electrolytes in our diet, however for most people it is not necessary to take these on a regular basis. Electrolyte supplementation can be beneficial during prolonged exercise, in hot weather, or during illness. If you think you could benefit from an electrolyte supplement, why not try MOBU Electrolyte tablets?

Do you take electrolytes? Let us know in the comments below

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