Importance of electrolytes

Electrolytes are classified as a chemical that when mixes with body fluids form ions. These ions ensure optimal operation of specific functions in the body. The right concentration of electrolyte is very important for the body. When its level goes below than required levels, then it leads to cramps in the body and hampers performance, and productivity of an individual. Let us know more about the significance, and benefits of electrolytes in the body.

importance of electrolytes

Why do we need Electrolytes?

Electrolytes are basically chemicals that becomes electrically charged ions when they come in contact with body fluids. They become an electric conductor and aids in transferring electrical energy to different parts of the body. On receiving electric energy, our body performs different types of functions like transmitting nerve impulses, contraction of muscles etc. Thus, optimal performance of your body is dependent on steady and a consistent supply of these valuable nutrients.

Electrolytes regulate the functioning of muscles, and nerves in the body that relies on the flow of electrolytes via the fluid that is present outside, within, and inside its cells. Electrolyte hydrates the body, as well as keep blood pressure, and acidity in check. Right amounts of electrolyte also assist in rebuilding damaged tissue.

Type of electrolytes present in a human body

A human body contains following types of electrolytes in it:

  • potassium
  • sodium
  • bicarbonate
  • calcium
  • chloride
  • magnesium
  • phosphate

When these substances either becomes high, or low in the body, it causes an imbalance. This can result in excessive shrinkage, and weakness of muscles. The muscle, nerve cells, and heart uses electrolyte to propagate electrical impulses to different cells in the body. When there is deficiency in these levels, then it hampers the functioning of the vital organs of the body.

Signs of imbalance in electrolyte levels

  • irregular heartbeat
  • bone related disorders
  • twitching
  • weakness
  • fluctuations in blood pressure
  • confusion
  • numbness
  • seizures
  • disorders in nervous system
  • convulsions
  • excessive laziness
  • muscle spasm

Functions of Electrolyte in the body

Fuels the body: During exercise, we lose a lot of electrolytes from the body in the form of sweat. It is important to replenish those fluids, and calories to adequately fuel the body. To ensure this, you need adequate, and consistent supply of electrolytes.

There are several ways to compensate for the loss of electrolytes from the body. Oral hydration therapy, electrolytes in the form of supplements, Endurolytes, are some of the ways that can resolve the issue. Electrolyte supplements offer the necessary minerals to the body to maintain its right balance.

Ensure smooth functioning of faculties of the body: Another significance of electrolytes is that it promotes the proper functioning of the various faculties in the body. Proper working of the nervous, digestive, muscular system, and cardiac depends on the level of electrolyte in the body. So, when your body is not deficient of electrolytes, it operates efficiently. Thus, adequate levels of electrolyte is responsible for keeping your body in the best functional state.

Prevents muscle cramps: Another important reason why you should have the right levels of electrolyte is to prevent painful muscle cramps. Imbalanced electrolyte levels, or inadequate hydration can be the cause for it. To relieve from this state, you need to take measures to replenish the lost amounts of electrolyte from the body.

How should you replenish electrolytes in the body?

Proper replenishment of electrolyte implies that you have to intake proper amounts of necessary minerals to effectively assist body functions and prevent cramping, and other issues caused due to its deficiency.

There are various ways in which right electrolyte levels can be restored in the body.

Drink Water: One of the ways to do is to stay hydrated. By drinking 8-10 glasses of water daily will help in preventing mild imbalance of electrolytes in the body.

Electrolyte Supplement: People who are deficient of electrolyte can treat this issue by supplementing their body with the right amounts of electrolyte. You will find a wide range of electrolyte supplement options on the market. Depending on your requirement, your doctor can suggest you the best electrolyte supplement alternative.

Oral rehydration therapy: To overcome acute shortage of electrolyte, the patient is subjected to an oral injection of necessary minerals in below dosage:

2.6 g sodium
1.5 g potassium chloride
2.9 g sodium citrate

Conclusion

Consistent replacement of calories, and fluids is necessary to adequate levels of energy during physical activities. Continuous refilling of electrolyte is an integral component to adequately fuel the body.

Also read: Importance of amino acids

If you find an imbalance of electrolytes in the body and relate to any of the above symptoms of electrolytic imbalance, then you need to take proper measures to overcome the deficiency. A consultation with your doctor will help you find the safe methods to maintain the right balance based on your medical condition.

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