Ditch the premade sports drinks and check out 5 healthier home-made electrolyte drinks to keep you hydrated this summer!
Keeping your fluid levels topped up whilst training is all the more important during summer. The higher temperatures lead to increased sweating and risk of dehydration. Research has shown that physical and mental performance can suffer with just a slight decrease in hydration status. All, the more reason to have H2O to hand when you are training in the sun. For post exercise recovery and optimum hydration, replenishing your electrolytes is a smart idea.
What Are Electrolytes?
Electrolytes are essential minerals with an electric charge found in blood, tissues and fluids within the body. Sodium, calcium, chloride, magnesium and potassium are examples of these minerals which are vital to many important bodily functions. Electrolytes help to balance water levels in your body. They also maintain pH levels and help with the transportation of nutrients in and out of cells. Concerning sports nutrition, electrolytes help muscles, nerves and organs do their jobs correctly.
Do I Need Electrolyte Drinks?
They are not always necessary; however there are times when you may become too dehydrated. Electrolyte drinks can help you quickly replenish your lost electrolytes and rehydrate. Training in hot temperatures, doing an intense workout, after sickness or diarrhoea and also after drinking too much alcohol are all examples of when you might need to top up your electrolytes.
Pre-made Electrolyte Drinks vs. Home-made
There are a wide range of sports drinks out there, but it’s a tricky market to navigate. Some are full of unnecessary additives, excessive sugar and are pricey too. Making your own ensures that you are fully aware of the ingredients going into the drink. Electrolytes are naturally present in fruits and vegetables as well as other foodstuffs like coconut water. Therefore you don’t need a chemistry lab to make your own sports drinks. You can also make your own bespoke drink to suit your dietary needs. Not forgetting, you can use pure filtered water!
5 Electrolyte Drinks to Make at Home
1. Zero Sugar Electrolyte Drink
Ideal if you want to limit your daily sugar intake. Just combine the following ingredients…
4 cups filtered water
1/2 cup lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon of salt
Rosehip herbal tea (for flavour, choose your favourite fruity tea)
Stevia (to sweeten)
2. Banana (Peel) Electrolyte Water
The banana peel and fruit contains essential electrolytes like magnesium and potassium. Other nutrients such as vitamin B6, manganese, and copper are also found in bananas.
Thoroughly wash 2 bananas and slice off both ends
Add them to a pot of 4-5 cups of boiling water (filter it first)
Reduce heat and simmer bananas for 20 minutes
Add cinnamon, lemon juice, and honey (optional)
Allow the mixture to cool and remove the bananas.
Optional, but you can add a pinch of salt if you want to increase the level of sodium in your electrolyte water.
3. Mojito Electrolyte Mocktail
Make this non-alcoholic concoction the night before and leave to refrigerate. Chilled and ready for after your morning workout. Mix together the following ingredients…
3 bags of green tea to 3 cups of cold filtered water
Juice of 2 limes
3 sprigs of fresh mint
3 tablespoons of honey
4. Tropical Electrolyte Drink
Coconut water is a natural source of electrolytes, with a 100ml containing approximately 165mg of potassium as well as magnesium, calcium and sodium. Pineapple is rich in antioxidants, specifically vitamin C. Antioxidants help to reduce inflammation, which is great for post workout muscle recovery.
3 cups filtered water
2 cups coconut water
Juice of 1 lemon
1 cup pineapple juice
½ teaspoon salt
5. Watermelon Lemonade
Watermelon is rich in the minerals potassium and magnesium. In addition it contains L-citrulline, the amino acid responsible for more efficient oxygen transport, improved blood flow and sports performance. Blend together, chill and enjoy…
2 cups watermelon (cubed)
1 cup of filtered water
Juice of 1 lemon
¼ teaspoon salt
The One Essential Ingredient…
Pure filtered water the one ingredient that ensures that you are taking in all of the nutrients without any added chemical contaminants. Filtering water also improves the taste, so that your electrolyte drinks can be as delicious and nutritious as possible. A simple way to get filtered water into your home is by installing a single point of use water filter in your kitchen. Or choose to have filtered water throughout your home with Aquatiere’s whole house water filtration solutions. Interested but unsure of which options would best suit you? Chat to our experts for more information, they will be happy to help!