Posts tagged electrolytes
Electrolytes 5 - Magnesium

Electrolytes 5: Magnesium


Final part of Jozef Wiewel's Electrolytes series!

Magnesium regulates the absorption of calcium and is involved in the structural integrity of bones and teeth. Magnesium regulates the contractility of the heart muscle. It is concentrated 18x greater in the heart muscle than in the bloodstream and is also used for cardiac contractility. Has a role in neuromuscular transmitters and actives vitamin B-complex. High intakes of calcium, vitamin D, and protein increase the requirement for magnesium. In short, magnesium is an essential mineral needed in the body to balance the equation with calcium, protein, vitamin D; iron, manganese, copper and iron for energy metabolism.

The principal function of magnesium that is critical in thyroid disease is that it enables muscles to relax. With inadequate magnesium, the muscles cramp.

Foods you will find magnesium in are green vegetables such as spinach which are good sources because the center of the chlorophyll molecule (which gives green vegetables their color) contains magnesium. Some beans, peas, nuts, seeds, and whole, unrefined grains are also good sources of magnesium.

You should note that refined grains are generally low in magnesium. When white flour is processed, the magnesium rich germ and bran are removed. Bread made from whole grain wheat flour provides more magnesium than bread made from white refined flour. Tap water can be a source of magnesium, but the amount varies according to the water supply. Water that naturally contains more minerals is described as "hard". "Hard" water usually contains more magnesium than "soft" water.

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Electrolytes 4 - Chloride and Calcium

Electrolytes 4: Chloride & CalciumSeaweed


The major anion (negatively charged ion) outside cells. Chloride also maintains a normal level of fluids in the body.

Chloride is obtained primarily from salt, such as standard table salt or sea salt. It is also contained in most foods, especially the vegetables. Seaweeds (such as dulse and kelp), olives, rye, lettuce, tomatoes, and celery are some examples of good chloride-containing foods.

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Calcium is essential for the normal growth and maintenance of bones and teeth, and calcium requirements must be met throughout life. Requirements are greatest during periods of growth, such as childhood, during pregnancy and when breast-feeding. Long-term calcium deficiency can lead to osteoporosis, in which the bone deteriorates and there is an increased risk of fractures.

Foods you will find calcium in are most dairy products, cheese, fish, broccoli, soya, eggs.

Electrolytes 3 - Potassium

Electrolytes 3: Potassium


Part 3 of series of articles on electrolytes by our Hot Yoga teacher Jozef Wiewel!

Potassium is the major positive ion found inside cells. Among many other functions it regulates the heartbeat and the muscle function. Potassium reduces the amount of lactic acid in your muscles and keeps your bones healthy. Lactic acid is present in your muscles during exertion, which eventually tires your muscles out and reduces your strength and endurance. Therefore, if you ingest potassium, your muscular strength and endurance will maintain at higher level for a longer time. It also reduces how sore your muscles feel the next morning.

Foods you will find potassium in are raisins, prunes, apricots, dates, strawberries, bananas, watermelon, cantaloupe, citrus fruits, beets, greens, spinach, tomatoes, mushrooms, soy, products, peas, beans, turkey, fish, beef, salmon, cod.

Electrolytes 2 - Sodium

Electrolytes 2: Sodium


Sodium is the major positive ion in fluid outside cells. The transmission of sodium is a critical body function especially in brain, nervous system and muscles which all require electrical signals for communication. Sodium is an important electrolyte that helps maintain the balance of fluid in a person's body. This means that sodium helps to regulate the amount of water in and around your body's cells. If the fluid levels in your body are not balanced, your cells will swell and medical issues may occur.

Without appropriate amounts of sodium, your body may have a difficult time cooling down after intense exercise or activity. When the body is hot, you sweat. If you do not have enough sodium, your body may not sweat as much and you may then become overheated. This could then result in a stroke, exhaustion and dehydration. Sodium is also important because it plays a major role in the regulation of your blood pressure. If your blood pressure is too high, it places you at risk for such illnesses as heart disease. Too much sodium can result in high blood pressure and could spark a heart attack and too little sodium could make you feel weak and exhausted all of the time.

This electrolyte plays an important role in ensuring that nutrients are passed into the body's cells. Similarly, if you want your nervous system to operate correctly, then you will definitely need the right amount of sodium in your diet. If you do not have enough sodium in your diet, you could even experience seizures.

Foods you will find sodium in are meats, grains, dairy, nuts, fruits and vegetables in modest amounts. Salt can be used in moderation to enhance sodium levels, but should not be overused.

It is said healthy adults should consume no more than 2,300 mg of sodium per day.

High-sodium cheeses include cheddar, parmesan.

Many fast-food items contain high levels of sodium

Other high-sodium baked goods include biscuits, muffins, baked pie crust and sweet rolls.

Canned goods contain salt, which preserves the vegetables and prevents them from spoiling quickly. Salt also adds flavor to canned goods. High-sodium canned foods include canned kidney beans, pickled vegetables and sauerkraut.

Salted nuts, pretzels, tortilla chips and potato chips add sodium to your daily diet.

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