Staying hydrated is one of the most important things you can do to help keep yourself safe and healthy. And although it sounds so simple to drink more water, between regularly participating in a sweat sesh, living in a warm climate, and simply being too busy to remember to drink, hydration can fall to the wayside.
So, how do you drink more water and make sure you are getting the right electrolytes? Read on to learn more.
RELATED: The Ultimate Guide to Hydration
What Are Electrolytes?
You may have heard the term electrolytes tossed around on electrolyte drink promos. But what do electrolytes do? Electrolytes are minerals that carry a charge and play essential roles in the body, including maintaining fluid balance.
Common electrolytes include sodium, potassium, and calcium.
What Happens if You Have an Electrolyte Imbalance?
When we lose fluids via sweat or other means, we may also lose electrolytes. So, with excessive fluid loss, simply drinking more water isn’t going to replenish what your body needs — you need to give yourself a boost of electrolytes too. Otherwise, you run the risk of experiencing an electrolyte imbalance — or a situation when your electrolyte levels in your body are too high or too low.
So, what are the symptoms of low electrolytes? Having low (or high) electrolytes can result in you feeling a multitude of symptoms, including muscle cramps, muscle weakness, fatigue, and headache.
To combat an electrolyte imbalance (particularly a low electrolyte status), making sure that you are supplying your body with enough of the right electrolytes is key. From electrolyte powders to electrolyte supplements, your options can appear to be endless. After a strenuous workout or a period where you are losing electrolytes, giving your body an electrolyte boost is very important.
But you don’t have to lean on fancy and expensive electrolyte replenishing solutions. With a little know-how, you can easily DIY an electrolyte drink that can help keep your hydration status in tip-top shape. Having a beverage with strong electrolytes that you actually enjoy drinking is one smart step towards keeping a healthy and fit body.
So, what is the best electrolyte drink? There is no sure-fire “best” drink out there. But making your own electrolyte drinks may be one step toward finding which solution is “best” for you and your own personal needs.
How to Make Your Own Electrolyte Drinks
Making your own electrolyte drinks may sound daunting, but it is actually super simple as long as you are equipped with the right knowledge.
Some key ingredients found in many DIY electrolyte drinks include:
Salt: A key electrolyte that plays an important role in fluid balance.
Coconut Water or Maple Water: These are liquids that contain natural glucose for proper replenishment and natural potassium for fluid balance.
Powdered Calcium and/or Magnesium: Electrolytes that can help maintain fluid balance (optional depending on personal needs).
Your drink may also contain a wide variety of other ingredients like juice, extra water, and herbs for flavoring. Want to try making your own? Give this recipe a try.
Refreshing Lime Electrolyte Drink
- ½ cup fresh lime juice
- 2 cups coconut water
- 2 tbsp honey
- ⅛ tsp pink Himalayan sea salt
- Optional: 1 serving of magnesium powder
- Serve over ice
Step #1: Add all ingredients, minus the ice to a blender, and blend for about 10-20 seconds.
Step #2: Pour into a glass over ice and enjoy!
Make Your Own Electrolyte Drink To Support Your Overall Hydration
Commercially-made electrolyte drinks may be tasty, but many varieties are loaded with ingredients like artificial colors, flavors, and sugars. Making your own electrolyte drink allows you to have control over what you are putting in your body.
As long as you include ingredients that contain key electrolytes, you can feel free to play around and find whichever combination works best for you. Cheers!