You have probably seen those jugs of gatorade at the sidelines of a football game, yogis sipping on coconut water after a yoga class, or electrolyte-enhanced waters lining the shelves at your grocery store. What are electrolytes and why is it important to replenish them after exercise?
Electrolytes are sodium, potassium, calcium, magnesium, and phosphate and are vital to the body functioning normally. They are responsible for regulating our nerve and muscle function, hydration, and blood pH. Electrolytes get depleted through long periods of exercise, through sports training, through excessive sweating, and from being sick and dehydrated. It is very important to keep electrolyte levels balanced and to replenish them if depleted. During a regular 20-60 minute cardio workout electrolytes would not be depleted, but a workout like Bikram Yoga may induce a need to replace lost electrolytes through sweating. Swap out those sugar-loaded sports drinks and stick to coconut water that naturally contains electrolytes. Did you know you can also replenish electrolytes through diet?
Here’s a list of top foods you can eat to help keep you hydrated, balanced, and feeling great:
Cultured dairy (amasai/kefir/yogurt)