What Are Electrolytes?

© Copyright Bee Wilder

Electrolytes are electrically-charged particles, and in the body they are all of the minerals necessary for the proper functioning of the body, for example sodium, potassium, calcium, magnesium, etc., which are in all of the body fluids, tissues, and cells.

Electrolytes are important because they are what your cells (especially nerve, heart, and muscle cells) use to maintain electrical charges across their cell membranes and to carry electrical impulses (nerve impulses, muscle contractions, etc.) across themselves and to other cells. Cell membranes surround the cells, enclosing the cell’s contents.

Your Body Contains 8 Major Electrolytes (Minerals)

  1. sodium (one of 2 minerals in salt)
  2. chloride (one of 2 minerals in salt)
  3. potassium
  4. calcium
  5. magnesium
  6. bicarbonate of soda, also called baking soda, that is produced by the body in many areas
  7. phosphate (phosphorus)
  8. sulfate (also sulphur or sulfur)

Body fluids, such as blood, plasma (yellow-colored liquid in the blood), and interstitial fluid (fluid between cells) are like seawater – see The Importance of Good Ocean Sea Salt in the Diet – and they contain high concentrations of sodium chloride, which is salt, along with many other important minerals.

Two Categories of Minerals

  1. Trace minerals are minerals your body requires in small amounts daily.
  2. Macro means large, therefore macrominerals are minerals your body requires in amounts of 200 mg or more daily

Here’s How to Obtain All of the Electrolytes (Minerals) Needed Every Day

  1. sodium and chloride from Ocean Sea Salt
  2. potassium, from plant and animal foods
  3. calcium, from plant and animal foods
  4. magnesium, from plant and animal foods
  5. phosphorus (phosphate), mainly from animal sources, i.e. meats and eggs
  6. sulphur (also sulfate or sulfur), which is high in eggs and in many other foods

Note, people who cannot consume dairy products need to take 600 mg calcium citrate and 600 mg magnesium citrate supplements per day, split into 2 doses of 300 mg each – see iHerb for brands recommended by Bee. A great alternative to taking supplements is to drink at least 3 cups of good Mineral-Rich Bone Broth per day.

Your kidneys work to keep the electrolyte concentrations in your blood constant despite changes in your body. For example, when you exercise heavily, do heavy work, or become overheated, you sweat a lot and lose electrolytes in your sweat. These electrolytes must be replaced to keep the electrolyte concentrations of your body fluids constant, to maintain the proper balance of water on either side of the cell membranes, and to maintain electrical charges and impulses necessary for proper body functioning.

How to Replace Electrolytes

The best way to replace electrolytes lost due to heavy sweating is to take a "good" ocean sea salt dissolved in non-chlorinated water or dissolved under your tongue followed by swallows of water