Electrolytes are essential minerals found in blood, sweat and urine. When these minerals dissolve in a fluid, they form electrolytes — positive or negative ions used in metabolic processes that are vital to keeping your body functioning as it should.
Your body's electrolytes include sodium, potassium, chloride, calcium, magnesium, phosphate and bicarbonate. These minerals help your nervous system and muscles function efficiently, maintain your body's acid-base (pH) balance and keep you hydrated.
Electrolytes may improve exercise performance
Electrolyte-enhanced waters help replenish water, electrolytes and energy lost during exercise, says Healthline. Your sweat contains a significant amount of sodium and small amounts of potassium, calcium, and magnesium. On average, you lose around one gram of sodium with every liter of sweat. You need additional fluids to replace the water lost in sweat during physical activity: A water loss of as little as 1–2% of your body weight can lead to decreased strength, speed and focus.
Electrolytes are recommended over plain water to replace fluid and electrolytes if you tend to sweat a lot, exercise longer than one hour, or work out in hot environments.
More about electrolytes
Electrolytes, and particularly sodium, help maintain the fluid balance inside and outside each cell in your body through osmosis, the process of moving water through the wall of a cell membrane from a diluted solution (more water and fewer electrolytes) toward a more concentrated solution (less water and more electrolytes). Osmosis prevents cells from bursting from being too full or shriveling up due to dehydration.
According to Healthy Focus, electrolyte imbalances may occur due to fluid loss resulting from:
- Sicknesses that cause diarrhea, fever, sweating, and vomiting
- Poor quality diets lacking in essential nutrients
- Certain medications prescribed for heart disease, cancer or hormonal issues
- Other medications like antibiotics, diuretics or corticosteroids
- Conditions that cause problems absorbing nutrients
- Kidney disease and kidney damage
- Chemotherapy treatment for cancer that can cause a calcium deficiency and changes in potassium levels
Symptoms of an electrolyte imbalance may include:
- Constant or frequent headaches
- Feelings of anxiety
- Insomnia or difficulty sleeping
- Constant thirst
- Irregular heartbeat or palpitations
- Changes in blood pressure
- Confusion and difficulty retaining focus
- Bone and joint pain
- Digestive difficulties such as diarrhea, cramp, and constipation
- Loss of appetite and weight loss
- Chronic fatigue
Revitalize your hydration habits with Wave, the healthy electrolyte supplement from HidrateSpark
HidrateSpark is proud to introduce Wave, a flavorful, zero-calorie electrolyte supplement to your daily hydration routine. Wave provides six key electrolytes plus bonus minerals and vitamins, based in clean ingredients and pink Himalayan sea salt. Wave is available in three refreshing flavors — Lemon, Strawberry and Pink Lemonade. Add it to your HidrateSpark smart water bottle to help ensure optimal body function.
While your body typically regulates electrolytes efficiently and keeps them at the right levels, dehydration resulting from exercise, illness, or heat should be addressed. Hydration with HidrateSpark and Wave can help optimize performance and focus, and keep your body functioning as it should.