Prep Time: 10 minutes
Sweltering heat during the month of August, leads to a loss of fluids along with essential electrolytes through perspiration. The importance of maintaining a balance of electrolytes applies to the general population. However, infants, children, elderly, and people with health issues are the most vulnerable to the effects of summer heat.
Electrolytes lost through perspiration include calcium, magnesium, potassium and sodium. The heart, muscle and nerve cells utilize electrolytes to preserve an electrical balance which incites nerve and muscle contractions. Loss of potassium and other electrolytes may result in muscle cramps, heart symptoms and contribute to nerve problems.
Many sports drinks advertise benefits of electrolyte replacement; however, add sugar and other ingredients that are not healthy. Electrolytes may be replenished with a diet of fresh fruits and vegetables. Smoothies and juices can be an excellent choice for replenishing electrolytes. A blender or juicer is required.
The following fruits and vegetables are suggested for maintaining a balance of electrolytes:
- Acorn Squash: Potassium
- Almond: Magnesium and Potassium
- Apple: Potassium
- Avocado: Magnesium and Potassium
- Banana: Magnesium and Potassium
- Broccoli: Calcium
- Celery: Chloride, Magnesium, Phosphorus, Potassium and Sodium
- Chia Seeds: Chia Seeds
- Collards: Calcium
- Kale: Calcium and Magnesium
- Kiwi: Calcium and Potassium
- Kumkwat: Calcium
- Mushroom: Potassium
- Nectarine: Potassium
- Okra: Calcium
- Orange: Potassium
- Peach: Potassium
- Plum: Calcium
- Prickly Pears: Calcium
- Spinach: Magnesium and Potassium
- Sweet Potatoes: Potassium
- Turnip Greens: Calcium
- Yam: Potassium
Electrolyte Replenishing Smoothie Recipe:
- One orange
- One kale leaf
- Two ripe bananas
- ½ cup of water
- 1 ½ tablespoons of chia seeds
- Soak chia seeds in water for five minutes, then drain.
- Peel and cut orange into chunks.
- Remove seeds from orange.
- Tear kale leaf into four pieces.
- Add orange, kale, chia seeds and water to blender.
- Blend on high speed until mixture is liquid.
- Cut banana into one inch chunks and slowing add to the mixture.
- Blend on low until both bananas are added.
- Turn blender to medium until the texture of the mixture is smooth.
*The above list is not a complete list and is meant to provide only some suggestions to include in a diet to maintain a balance of electrolytes.
**Image courtesy Flickr Creative Commons.