Best Ways To Replenish Your Electrolytes Naturally
Adapted with permission from Calmful Living by Natural Vitality, the US makers of Natural Calm.
Do you know electrolytes are important, but feel hesitant to consume the artificial drinks famous for replenishing them?
Youre onto something.
Its true: electrolytes matter. They regulate muscle and nerve function, hydration, blood pressure, and your bodys pH levels. Deficiencies or imbalances in electrolyteswhich include calcium, magnesium, potassium, sodium, hydrogen phosphate, bicarbonate, and chloridecan cause everything from fatigue and muscle cramping to irregular heartbeat and seizures. When we sweat, we lose electrolytes so its important to replace them.
Its also true that popular sports drinks like Gatorade and Powerade, which do contain electrolytes, are full of artificial ingredients and refined sugar.
Fortunately, there are ways to get the electrolytes you need without resorting to these processed products.
Replacing Electrolytes Through Food
The most common electrolytes lost through physical activity are sodium and potassium, both of which are readily available in common foods.
Sodium is found in cheese, green olives, crackers, breads, meats and other processed and salty foods. Good sources of potassium include milk, bananas, raisins, green leafy vegetables and oranges, which all act as hydration supplements. By consuming a small snack consisting of foods from these two groups, you can easily replace your body’s electrolyte stores during or just after exercise, according to HuffPost.
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Is Gatorade Zero High In Sodium
Gatorade Zero has 160mg of sodium per serving of 12 fl oz . This is a moderate amount of sodium, similar to one and a half handfuls of salted nuts. It would take 9 or 10 servings of Gatorade Zero to reach the American Heart Associations ideal limit of 1,500 mg of sodium per day.
A lot of people dont realize that the electrolytes in sports drinks include basic table salt. This is because its important to replenish your bodys salt while sweating and exercising.
But if youre just drinking Gatorade Zero all day while being sedentary, can you get too much salt? Its possible.
Youd be more likely to get too much salt from canned foods like frozen TV dinners, soup, and the like, though. Cans of soup can have 1,000+ mg of sodiumover 6 times as much as a serving of Gatorade Zero.
The American Heart Associations official recommendation for sodium intake is to stay under 2,300 mg per day. But theyve announced that they are moving toward an ideal limit of 1,500 mg per day. Certain at-risk populations are also given a limit of 1,500 mg.
Considering all this, Gatorade Zero is honestly not the worst thing for sodiumbut its not sodium free, either.
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The Problem With Sugary Drinks
The average American consumes a whopping 17% of their calories from added sugar. This approaches 20 teaspoons of sugar on a 2000 calorie diet.
The majority of this sugar comes from sugar-sweetened beverages. Many electrolyte drinkslike Gatorade, Powerade, and anything else colored iridescent bluefall into this category.
The consequences of excess sugar consumption are beyond the scope of this article. . But consider this partial list of chronic diseases linked to higher sugar intakes.
Chronic diseases linked to sugar consumption:
- Heart disease. For each sugary beverage consumed daily, a persons risk of heart disease goes up by 10-20%.
- Type 2 Diabetes. In over 90,000 women, drinking more than one sugary beverage per day translated to an 83% increased risk of developing type 2 diabetes.
- Cancer. High blood sugar from high sugar consumption fuels cancer via the Warburg Effect. . Mice fed the equivalent of one sugary beverage per day developed more colon cancer than control mice.
- Kidney disease. When healthy adults consumed 2 liters of soda after exercise, they showed of kidney injury.
- It doesnt stop there. Sugar drives the obesity epidemic. Higher sugar intakes are linked to higher rates of cognitive decline. Sugar exacerbates gut issues. The list goes on, but you get the point. Besides, sugar isnt the only problem with most electrolyte drinks.
Is Gatorade Zero Keto
Gatorade Zero contains zero calories and is hence keto-friendly. However, it does contain artificial sweeteners. Strict ketogenic dieters may thus want to avoid G Zero.
Generally speaking, Gatorade Zero is alright for those on a low-carb diet, or practicing dirty keto. But it may not be a good option for strict keto.
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Gatorade Is Ditching Sugar
Gatorade Zero, a thirst quencher without sugar or carbs, hit stores around the country this week. It comes in orange, lemon lime, and glacier cherry, and is priced in line with the brand’s classic sports drink.
The new drink is a tacit admission that the heyday of sugary sports drinks is winding down.
Gatorade has controlled the nearly $8 billion US sports drink industry for decades, grabbing about 75% of the market, according to research firm Euromonitor International. The brand has been a boon for Pepsi, which has owned Gatorade since 2001.
The drink is a fixture of sports sidelines through sponsorships with pro leagues and endorsement deals for global stars, including Michael Jordan, Serena Williams and Lionel Messi. Gatorade’s 1991 “Be Like Mike” commercial helped propel the Jordan craze, while Glacier freeze and fruit punch Gatorade baths have become marks of Super Bowl-winning coaches.
But Gatorade is showing signs of fatigue. Sales ticked down 0.5% last year to $5.9 billion in the United States, according to Euromonitor. The brand lost market share, too.
Although high on electrolytes that help athletes rehydrate as they sweat, a 20-ounce drink has 34 grams of sugar, 36 grams of carbohydrates, and 140 calories. Health-conscious athletes have grown wary of sweeteners and added carbs.
Add Salt & Water Then Mix It Up
Salt is a crucial element to a sports drink, as your body needs to replenish both sodium and chloride that it loses when you sweat. Add 1/16th to 1/8th teaspoon to your mixture, then add one cup of water. Thoroughly mix the drink until all of the solid ingredients are dissolved, then either enjoy or keep in the fridge until you needed. It’s really that easy!
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What Does Gatorade Zero Have In It
Lets start by actually looking at some Gatorade Zero ingredients. Below is a table showing three flavors. Most of the ingredients are the same for each flavor, but the coloring is actually quite different between flavors.
Ill share my takeaway points below the table:
|Gatorade Zero Flavor||Ingredients|
|Orange||Water, Citric Acid, Sodium Citrate, Salt, Monopotassium Phosphate, Gum Arabic, Natural Flavor, Sucralose, Acesulfame Potassium, Sucrose Acetate Isobutyrate, Glycerol Ester Of Rosin, Yellow 6.|
|Berry||Water, Citric Acid, Natural Flavor, Sodium Citrate, Salt, Monopotassium Phosphate, Vegetable Juice Concentrate , Modified Food Starch, Sucralose, Acesulfame Potassium, Glycerol Ester Of Rosin.|
|Glacier Cherry||Water, Citric Acid, Natural Flavor, Sodium Citrate, Salt, Monopotassium Phosphate, Modified Food Starch, Mixed Triglycerides, Sucralose, Glycerol Ester Of Rosin, Acesulfame Potassium.|
Here are the 3 biggest points I notice from these ingredients:
- Gatorade Zero has artificial sweeteners. On the bright side, Gatorade Zero doesnt have sugar. But instead, it has Sucralose and Acesulfame K. These are controversial zero-calorie sweeteners, and theyre likely the worst aspect of Gatorade Zero. Ill explore this more below.
- Gatorade Zero has added electrolytes. This is the main point of sports drinks like Gatorade Zero. It helps replace electrolytes like sodium and potassium as you lose them in your sweat. But does Gatorade Zero have too much sodium? Well cover that below.
Is Gatorade Zero Better Than Water
If you acutely need rehydration and electrolytes, then Gatorade Zero may be better than water in that moment. But in most other situations, plain water would likely be healthier to drink.
If you need to rehydrate due to prolonged exercise or heat exposure, the benefits of Gatorade Zero could outweigh the drawbacks, compared to water. In those situations, drinking too much water without electrolytes can actually result in salt depletion heat exhaustion.
In such situations, you can also replenish your electrolytes with natural options like sea salt, coconut water, and other high-electrolyte foods. But Gatorade Zero and other sports drinks are a convenient option.
In normal day-to-day life, water is the ideal drink for most of your fluids. It has none of the extra, unnatural ingredients found in sports drinks like Gatorade Zero.
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What Food Has The Most Electrolytes
5 Foods to Replenish Electrolytes Dairy. Milk and yogurt are excellent sources of the electrolyte calcium. Bananas. Bananas are known to be the king of all potassium containing fruits and veggies. Coconut Water. For a quick energy and electrolyte boost during or after a workout, try coconut water. Watermelon. Avocado.
Does Gatorade Have Aspartame
We all know very well that many soft drinks manufacturers, and Im including sports drinks creators in that category, use sweeteners in place of real sugar.
This tactic is also how they get to label their drinks as being DIET or SUGAR FREE however these sweeteners also have their good and bad sides.
And there are many variants of artificial sweeteners with some being better than others.
But lets start with Aspartame..
Does Gatorade Have Aspartame?
Gatorade does have artificial sweeteners, but aspartame is not among them.
Artificial sweeteners are known to have different effects on the body and blood sugars specifically and when compared to regular sugar a lot of the research has shown that they are not as good for you.
Many kinds of artificial sweeteners need to be studied more so that we can fully understand the impact they have on our health.
Gatorade gets its sweet taste from different artificial sweeteners. Gatorade also containsnatural sweeteners but to get a variety of flavors and the hydration benefits from Gatorade, it relies on sucralose and dyes.
Many Gatorades also have sugar listed on the ingredients list, which can contribute to health problems as well.
The kind of sweeteners used in Gatorade does depend on the kind of Gatorade.
When drinking or eating no-sugar or no-calorie options, it is important to look at where the sweet taste is coming from. If something is sweet without sugar, that taste is coming from somewhere else.
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Why Not Buy Sports Drinks Instead
As delicious as store-bought sports drinks are, there are a lot of downsides. It’s true that they provides a lot of good workout ingredientsnamely water and sodiumbut sports drinks are also heavy on the artificial food coloring and the sugar.
A 500 mL bottle of Gatoradewhich is listed as one servinghas 29 grams of sugar. For perspective, a recommended single serving size of Skittles has 32 grams of sugar, and a serving of Ben & Jerry’s Chunky Monkey ice cream has just 28 grams of sugar, which is amazingly less than one serving of Gatorade. While it’s true that a little sugar is good in a sports drink, 29 grams is far too much.
Furthermore, store-bought sports drinks add up after a while, especially if you work out on a frequent basis. You can save a lot of money by making your own electrolyte-replenishing drinks with a few basic ingredients.
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Does Gatorade Have Caffeine
The simple answer is no. Caffeine is a stimulant found in tea, coffee, and soda, but it is not present in Gatorade. However, you will find electrolytes, such as potassium and sodium, in Gatorade, which are essential to keep you hydrated. Electrolytes are important to replace any nutrients you lose during strenuous physical activities.
What Does Gatorade Contain?
Gatorade is a popular sports drink and offers several health benefits mainly due to the ingredients it has. It is worth pointing out that Gatorade reformulates its beverages often, but some ingredients are usually the same. Here is what you will find in Gatorade:
Gatorade also contains salt to help regulate fluid balance and sodium citrate to maintain the stability of active ingredients. Monopotassium phosphate is also present in Gatorade and works as a source of phosphate to improve your heart health. Moreover, a container of Gatorade provides you with 90 calories in total without any saturated fat or cholesterol. Here is more about nutrition facts of Gatorade to help you answer, “Does Gatorade have caffeine?”
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Can Gatorade Zero Cause High Blood Pressure
There is no such evidence that shows that Gatorade has any significant impact on blood pressure and resting heart rate.
But here is the thing: Gatorade Zero contains 270 milligrams of sodium per serving. So, consuming a lot of the drink while you are not actually losing minerals to workouts or running could be harmful to your blood pressure in the long run.
Electrolyte Water And Mineral Water
Cant you just get electrolytes from sparkling mineral water or smartly-packaged electrolyte water? Unfortunately, thats a losing strategy.
Mineral waters have a bit of calcium but are generally low in sodium and potassium. Enjoy them in good health, but dont count on them for electrolytes.
And much of the time, store-bought electrolyte water isnt actually electrolyte water. Its just plain water with a mere dusting of minerals for taste. Dont be fooled by this sort of language, check the ingredients.
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The Zero Sugar Debate
Sugary drinks might taste great, but at the end of the day, the added sugars they contain are linked to so many illnesses and potentials for disease that many brands are launching zero-sugar and low-sugar options of their best-selling products as is the case for both Powerade Zero and Gatorade Zero.
According to the Mayo Clinic staff, added sugars, which are sugars and syrups that make their way into food during processing, are commonly found in energy drinks, sodas, candy, and more. The 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines recommends consuming no more than 10 percent of your daily calories in added sugars .
Since not everyone works within a 2,000 calorie range, the American Heart Association takes it a step further, and recommends that adult women should eat no more than 100 calories, or 25 grams of sugar, per day. Men should eat no more than 150 calories, or 38 grams.
With this in mind, switching from a regular sports drink to one that’s made with no sugar can save you nearly an entire day’s worth of sugar, if not more. Additionally, opting for low-sugar and sugar-free alternatives is a better option orally, as it’s less likely to lead to tooth decay.
Is Gatorade Zero Better For You Than Water
Gatorade Zero is meant to be consumed by people working out and those indulging in intense athletics.
The Carbohydrates and electrolytes in G Zero are essential to help these people refuel and rehydrate. Electrolytes help regulate the bodys fluid balance while carbs provide energy.
From this perspective, Gatorade Zero has better hydration than water.
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What To Drink Instead
Gatorade Zero doesnt have enough electrolytes to make a meaningful difference in hydration, and you may want to avoid its artificial sweeteners.
Instead, consider trying Keto Perform. Its an energy drink specifically designed to support your workouts while youre on a low-carb diet.
Keto Perform contains far more electrolytes than Gatorade Zero. A single serving of Keto Peform has:
- 46% DV calcium
- 63% DV magnesium
- 21% DV sodium
We designed Keto Performs electrolyte profile to prevent symptoms of keto flu and help you rehydrate after an intense workout.
Keto Perform also contains:
- Exogenous ketones for keto-friendly energy.
- MCT kil for energy and weight loss.
- Creatine for strength and faster muscle growth.
- Beta-Alanine for strength and faster muscle growth.
- L-Citrulline for muscle blood flow.
- Zero sugar and no artificial sweeteners, colors, or flavors
- Zero grams of carbs per serving
If youre looking for a high-quality sports drink that will keep you in ketosis, give Keto Perform a try.
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Water Vs Sports Drinks
LiveWell recommends that adults and children should only consume sports drinks with electrolytes during or after extended and heavy exercise that lasts longer than an hour. Water is the better option for lighter workouts. However, after an intense and long workout, athletes would benefit more from eight to 16 ounces of a sports drink than from water.
Researchers compared the effect of only water water plus 8 oz of a sports drink and half a banana, using 20 competitive cyclists on a 47-mile bike ride. The results, published in PlosOne in 2018, showed that drinking only water led to high levels of inflammation in the study group’s blood. When the cyclists drank the sport’s drink or consumed the banana, the levels of inflammation were much lower.