The Easiest DIY Electrolyte Replacement Drink

The Easiest (& Natural) Electrolyte Replacement- Thirst Quencher “on Flex”

Whoa! The heat finally turned up in Chicago the last couple of weeks. And if you’re spending as much time sweating as I have been and maybe imbibing in some drinks that lead to dehydration (hint: think Fro-se wine), read on about how you should be replacing that sweat!

The sport drink and energy drink industry is big business.  It reached $25 billion over the last several years and is trending up to even bigger sales by 2020.  These drinks do come at a cost and the ingredients are not always the best solution when we need electrolytes the most.

Think about when you are sick, have the stomach flu, food poisoning or have just sweat out what feels like every ounce of liquid in your body from a rigorous athletic competition or practice… what do you reach for? 

The answers I received when I asked the question were pretty common, but none of them I would consume on my worst day.  So many drinks have some real sketchy ingredients added. I’m talking chemical variations of sugar, color dyes or additives, fillers and preservatives.

I encourage you to take the time and just read the label and if you can not pronounce or do not know what it says then re-consider and hydrate right. 

Many mentioned Pedialyte as a good alternative when they need electrolyte replacement. But so many sports and energy drinks even Pedialyte have ingredients I would not feed my body or any one I love.

Look at the ingredients in strawberry flavored Pedialyte…

One-liter container has the following ingredients: Water, Dextrose, Citric Acid, Potassium Citrate, Sodium Chloride, Sodium Citrate, Natural Flavor, Sucralose, Acesulfame Potassium, Zinc Gluconate, Red 40 and Blue 1.

Dyes like Red 40 and Blue 1 have been linked with many side effects that I would not suggest if your reaching for this drink because you need a boost to performance or your immune system is feeling compromised. Auto-immune disease has been on the rise.  All the unhealthy chemical additives and sugars (oh don’t get me started on how I feel about sugar…) is NOT what your body needs when it is most vulnerable. 

What Are Electrolytes and Why Do We Need Them?

In a nutshell, electrolytes are basically salts – specifically the ions in salt. According to Discovery Health, “electrolytes are important because they are what your cells (especially nerve, heart, muscle) use to maintain voltages across their cell membranes and to carry electrical impulses (nerve impulses, muscle contractions) across themselves and to other cells.”

Furthermore, when we get the stomach flu or have diarrhea or vomiting, we lose electrolytes and need to replenish them. The same goes for athletes (kids and adults) who exercise a lot – they lose electrolytes (specifically sodium and potassium) through sweat.

The major electrolytes in the body include: sodium, potassium, chloride, calcium, magnesium, bicarbonate, phosphate and sulfate.

Basic DIY Healthy Electrolyte Replacement Drink Recipe

·        1 cups water -filtered or purified (see my blog article Do you Drink?)

·        1 cup raw coconut water (optional)

·        2 Tbsp organic raw honey or this convenient on the go squeeze pack is great

·        1/8 tsp Himalayan Pink Salt I like Himalayan better - it has 84 trace minerals

·        3 tsp of calcium-magnesium powder

·        1/2 cup fresh orange juice, pomegranate juice or Ningxia Red (all optional but tasty additions)

·        1 drop from Citrus Vitality Dietary line of Young Living Essential Oils (lemon, orange, citrus fresh, grapefruit, lime, tangerine, jade lemon)

This recipe uses a mix of coconut water and regular water but to provide a more varied flavor add fresh squeezed fruit juices and some potassium and calcium for added benefits. Feel free to pair down this recipe with water, salt, honey and a drop of flavored essential oils (not all essential oils are suitable for ingesting, the brand I refer to is non GMO and 100% therapeutic grade or for justuse only water if you prefer, but you may need to add electrolytes, like salt and a powdered calcium-magnesium supplement, for proper refueling.  Shop for calcium-magnesium powder online.

  • Adding too much sugar can cause stomach distress during exercise for those with a sensitive gastrointestinal (GI) tract.

  • Adding too little sugar can lower the amount of carbohydrates you get before, during, or after your workout. This can affect your performance and ability to refuel.

  • Finally, although you don’t lose a lot of potassium or calcium in sweat, they’re still important electrolytes to replenish.

After an athletic event or exercise, aim to drink 16 to 24 ounces (2 to 3 cups) of a rehydration fluid per pound of weight lost, to properly rehydrate.

Since sports nutrition is individualized, athletes and those who have exercised longer than two hours, are heavy sweaters, or exercising in hot climates may need to increase the sodium amount given below.

This recipe provides a 6 percent carbohydrate solution with 0.6 grams (g) of sodium per liter, which are both within general sports-nutrition rehydration guidelines.

Questions about any of the ingredients or if you have a suggested recipe to try, you know I’m all ears and can’t wait to talk to you! Comment below.

Happy Hydrating! # FlexUp