Electrolytes and Essential Amino Acids
What are electrolytes?
When you train hard, you sweat. When you sweat, you lose electrolytes. These electrically charged mineral substances are found in your bodily fluids and have an impact on blood pH, body water levels, muscle function, metabolism, tissue repair and more. Electrolytes include common minerals such as potassium, sodium, magnesium, phosphorus and calcium.
Maintaining a healthy balance of electrolytes within the body is important. That’s why it’s crucial to replace them after strenuous exercise by drinking plenty of fluids, especially those rich in minerals. Coconut water is a popular replenishment drink because it’s an excellent natural source of potassium and other electrolytes.
What are amino acids?
Amino acids are the structural “building blocks” of protein, which is why you’ll hear bodybuilders and athletes talking about the merits of these mighty molecules. Of the more than 20 amino acids in existence, there are nine that your body cannot synthesize internally - these are known as essential amino acids and they must be consumed through diet.
How to consume more amino acids
You’ll find essential amino acids in dairy products, meats, fish, poultry, nuts, soybeans, whole grains and vegetables such as spinach, green beans and lima beans. Amino acid supplements also offer a convenient way to obtain these important substances. Because amino acid supplements come in a wide range of dosages and concentrations, it’s important to analyze your personal needs to be sure you’re choosing the right product.