Jul 30, 2007

Electrolytes for Our Body's "Electrical System"

Here's an article on our body's "electrical system". This is so important to consider during the summer when many of us are sweating in the heat throughout the US, or any time of year for the athlete who works him/herself into a sweat while working out.

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The human body is an “electrical machine”. All vital bodily functions happen as a result of electrical signals being sent between the various parts of your body and your brain. In order for your body to operate at peak performance, these electrical signals must be conducted in an efficient manner- this is where electrolytes come in. Electrolytes are substances that will conduct electricity when dissolved in water – the most common electrolyte in your body is salt.

(My husband was recently told that his sodium was low, which we thought was a bit funny because we have been told, due to his heart, to keep his sodium levels down, and while he was in the hospital for his stent procedure (see earlier posts), they had him on a salt-restricted diet.)

Your body is 70% water, about two-thirds of the water resides inside your cells, (intra-cellular fluid) and about one-third resides outside of your cells, (extra-cellular fluid). Your body works constantly to make sure that the intra-cellular fluid and extra cellular fluid have the same amount of electrolyte concentration – this is a very important component of homeostasis or your body’s inner balance.

The mechanisms that monitor and adjust the balance of electrolytes respond only to changes in extra cellular fluid such as blood. When someone is ill or injured and taken to the hospital, one of the first and most common procedures is to hang an I.V. which simply means injecting salt water directly into the blood stream. Doing so helps the body to operate better because electrical signals moving between the brain and the body can be better conducted.

In addition, when salt is added to the extra cellular fluid it causes water to move between the intracellular and extra cellular areas allowing the body to become properly hydrated. This is why athletes, for example, take salt pills or drink “sports drinks” during work-outs. Sports drinks are simply salt water, or other electrolyte solutions, mixed with artificial colorings, artificial flavorings, artificial sweeteners and chemical preservatives.

The Wholefood Farmacy offers a wonderful product called Stardust 2 Hydr8 for a reasonable price that allows you to make 20 gallons of a pure, hydrating electrolyte solution. When mixed with water, Stardust 2 Hydr8 offers you all of the benefits of a saline or electrolyte solution without any artificial additives. It is made from pure salt and bicarbonate which are the main components of extra cellular fluid. 
 
Article source - The Wholefood Farmacy used with permission. Updated 2/3/16

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