The Importance of Electrolytes

By Angela Feng, Healthy Aggies Intern

Electrolytes are minerals present in your body…and there’s a whole lot of them! This includes: Sodium, Potassium, Chloride, Calcium, Magnesium, Phosphate, and Bicarbonate. Electrolytes are essential in maintaining vital body functions. They are responsible for conducting nervous impulses, contracting muscles, and keeping you hydrated. Did you know electrolytes and water can be lost when you sweat? Long periods of intense exercise may cause significant electrolyte loss.

So… you might be wondering where to get more of these? Well, you’ve come to the right place! Here are some electrolyte rich food and beverages that you can incorporate in your meals:

  • Coconut Water is naturally low in sugar and contains electrolytes like potassium, sodium, phosphorus, and magnesium!
  • Whole Milk also has the same electrolytes as coconut water, with an additional supply of calcium, carbohydrates and protein.
  • 100% Fruit Juice is a great refreshing electrolyte-rich drink. Make sure to look for fruit juice with no added sugars! Watermelon juice contains “L-citrulline,” which is known to enhance oxygen transport and athletic performance!
  • Leafy Green Vegetables such as spinach, kale, and broccoli contain a variety of electrolytes. These can be added into salads or smoothies.
  • Nut and Seeds like cashews, almonds, and sunflowers are rich in magnesium and phosphorus. Nut and seed butters are both great too!
  • Legumes are loaded with electrolytes and also provide protein. These include a variety of beans such as: kidney beans, pinto beans, and black beans. Other common legumes include: chickpeas, peanuts, and lentils.

Tell me about your favorite electrolyte rich foods in the comments below!

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