DateJune 26, 2013
comment1 comment by Author, Razvan Stancea

We’ve all heard of drinks containing electrolytes that are supposed to be the perfect choice for replenishing fluids. Parents will notice them in drinks that promise to help soothe the aching stomachs of children. How much do you know about electrolytes and what they can do for your kids?

What Are Electrolytes?

Electrolytes are positively or negatively charged ions. Those with a positive charge are referred to as cations and those that are negatively charged are anions. In the body, they help control nerve and muscle function while also working to rebuild tissue that has been damaged. Electrolyte levels in the body are affected by the amount of water in the body. That means that electrolytes and hydration go hand in hand.

Benefits of Electrolytes After Sports

Many times, we see advertisements for sports drinks containing electrolytes. These ads mention that electrolytes are necessary after a workout, but they don’t give much detail about just how it works.

When working out, we sweat. Sweat is the action of fluid leaving the body more quickly than it would otherwise. Replenishing fluids in the body is important after a workout because it is necessary to allow muscles to function properly. When the body is not properly hydrated, it can cause muscle cramping, fatigue, weakness, dizziness, and nausea. All of these symptoms will obviously negatively affect your workout. Drinks containing electrolytes will prevent dehydration and keep you at your physical best.

Post-sports drinks aren’t necessarily just for adults. Kids involved in physical activity can also use electrolyte drinks to stay hydrated. If a child is involved in rigorous physical activity for over an hour, an electrolyte drink can help prevent dehydration. Choosing a drink that is made specifically for kids can be more beneficial than giving them drinks that target adults.

Benefits of Electrolytes When Sick

Another way that electrolytes can be extremely helpful is when dealing with a sick child. When a child has the flu, it can lead to diarrhea, vomiting, and a high fever. Those factors often lead to dehydration. When a child is dehydrated, fluids need to be replenished frequently to prevent a more serious medical risk.

Convincing a child to drink the proper amount of fluid when he or she is sick can be a struggle for a parent. However, if the child is experiencing diarrhea or vomiting, getting enough fluids becomes extremely important. Without fluids and electrolytes, the symptoms of dehydration can become more prevalent, causing the child more pain and creating serious health risks. The diarrhea, vomiting, and fever alone are clear signs of dehydration. A child may also experience fatigue, dizziness, rapid heartbeat, lack of sweating, and less urination than normal.

Electrolytes found in oral rehydration solutions can replenish the fluids in a way that other drinks cannot. Sugar drinks will only make the effects of dehydration worse, which is why pediatricians advise against offering sports drinks to sick children. Drinks like Leolyte, however, have a great taste and work with the body to absorb fluids and encourage hydration.

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