We've all heard how important it is to stay hydrated throughout the day and to replenish our electrolytes when we're sick or during a workout, but do we know why?
We need electrolytes (sodium, potassium, chloride, bicarbonate) for proper cell function. When you're sick or sweating for hours, you lose electrolytes, forcing your kidneys to work extra hard. Your kidneys are there to filter your blood and get rid of waste products through urine, so when you're dehydrated, they make your urine as concentrated as possible to keep water and electrolytes in the body while still getting rid of waste products.
So, it's vital to our health to keep our electrolyte levels up, which is why drinks like Gatorade and Pedialyte are so popular. These drinks have a similar concentration of electrolytes to our cells and are better able to rehydrate our bodies than plain water. They contain sodium, potassium, chloride, bicarbonate and glucose in the right amounts to properly rehydrate our bodies.
However, they also contain chemicals like yellow dye #5 and many other artificial additives you don't want in your system.
Here, a simple, natural alternative to these manufactured drinks that's easy, quick and totally safe to serve. Ignore the impulse to run out and buy a processed drink just because that's what you've always done!
The Natural Hydrator
- 1 quart of water
- Juice of 2 oranges
- 2 slices of lemon
- 3/4 teaspoon of salt
- Optional (for taste): 1-2 teaspoons of sugar or honey
Combine all the ingredients and drink up!
Dr. Amy Shah is a double board certified MD with training from Cornell, Columbia and Harvard Universities. She was named one of mindbodygreen's Top 100 Women In Wellness to Watch in 2015 and has been a guest on many national and local media shows. She helps busy people transform their health by reducing inflammation and eating more plants, utalizing the power of the microbiome to help digestion, natural hormone balance and food sensitivities. She is an expert on intermittent fasting for women and has a 2 week guided group program.