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Benefits of Hydration and Why Electrolytes Are Essential for Weight Management

Benefits of Hydration and Why Electrolytes Are Essential for Weight Management

Do you ever wonder if you drink enough water? Hydration is vital to the body, as it’s important for all bodily functions and regulates body temperature.

Not only do we need water on a daily basis, but we also need electrolytes. The water we consume on a daily basis, whether tap water or bottled water, usually has small amounts of electrolytes added.

What exactly are electrolytes? Electrolytes are minerals in the body that have an electric charge and include sodium, potassium, calcium and magnesium. These minerals have an important role in the body as they help regulate blood pressure, maintain the correct pH of the blood (acidity and alkalinity), regulate fluid balance, and regulate muscle contractions (such as the heart).

Electrolytes and adequate fluid intake are vital for overall health of the body. Water helps transport medications, vitamins, and minerals throughout the body, prevents dehydration, promotes detoxification, flushes out waste, aids nutrient absorption, helps with appearance, and improves circulation, mood and energy levels.

Many times, individuals misplace hunger signals for thirst. Hunger may increase when you are dehydrated, leaving individuals confused and reaching for food, when it may just be water that is needed.

Drinking water increases the amount of calories you burn at rest. It has been shown that resting energy expenditure can increase 24-30% shortly after drinking water. 

The next question is, how much water do we need on a daily basis? The general goal is to take your body weight, divide it in half and that is how many ounces of water you need daily.

And keep in mind, if you live in a drier climate, are exercising, working outdoors in the heat, or breastfeeding, your water needs increase. Also, caffeine is a diuretic flushing out excess water - so if you are a coffee drinker - increase your water intake!

Dehydration or low electrolyte levels may lead to fatigue, nausea, muscle cramps, blood pressure changes, headaches or migraines, and an overall lethargic feeling.

Electrolyte beverages have become mainstream and help maintain fluid and balance levels and provide flavor to water. These beverages help replenish minerals lost through sweat, exercising, vomiting and/or diarrhea.

However, many sport drinks or electrolyte beverages contain high amounts of sugar, artificial sweeteners or other chemicals, with some beverages containing around 30g of added sugar.

Ultima Replenisher electrolyte drink mix is a great choice as it contains no added sugar, calories or carbohydrates and is free of artificial sweeteners, chemicals and/or dyes.

Next time you find yourself reaching for an afternoon snack, try a refreshing glass of homemade lemonade instead!

Homemade Sparkling Lemonade

36 oz Seltzer
1 cup fresh squeezed lemon juice
1 cup water
3 scoops Ultima Replenisher Lemonade Flavor
2 cups ice
Sprig of rosemary and basil leaves for garnish

Add all ingredients to a 2-quart pitcher. Stir to combine. Taste and adjust flavors as needed (add more lemon juice to increase the tartness or more Ultima Replenisher in Lemon to increase the sweetness.)

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About the Author:

Julie Usdavin, Nutritionist/Dietician, MS, RD, CSOWM, LD specializes in helping individuals become free of yo-yo dieting, food restriction and confusion of what to eat. As a Board Certified Specialist in Obesity and Weight Management with a background of holistic and functional nutrition, she works with individuals both online and in person in Las Vegas. After overcoming her own gut health struggles, she knows first-hand how diet plays a roll in our well-being. Visit her website.

 

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