By: Amanda Freeman and the CSHH ASF Team
Electrolytes are important chemical minerals in our bodily fluid, and include sodium, potassium, and magnesium. Each electrolyte has either a positive or negative charge and all are crucial for maintaining the water balance in the body, the pH level of the blood, as well as muscle and brain cell function. Our bodies cannot make electrolytes and we are dependent upon the foods we eat and the beverages we drink to provide them. It is important that we keep our electrolytes in balance; people lose electrolytes through sweat and must replace them through electrolyte-containing fluids or foods.
Dehydration disrupts the balance of fluids and electrolytes and it is important to replace fluid loss throughout the day because by just going about daily activities results in the body losing about two to two and a half cups of water. As we age, the thirst drive decreases and older individuals often don’t drink enough to replace the amount of fluid lost each day. Infants and children require a proportionally greater volume of water per day to maintain their fluid balance. This is because they have a higher content of water in their bodies and increased amount of surface area (skin), where water evaporates, compared to their body mass require proportionally greater volumes of water than adults to maintain their fluid equilibrium and are more susceptible to volume depletion.
There are numerous drinks available that contain electrolytes, but the big question is often which drink will rehydrate other negative outcomes. Stop by our booth at the Atlanta Science Festival and learn more about how electrolytes maintain the water balance in our body. You can also participate in our hands-on demonstration of the electrolyte levels of different beverages!
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Laila Goharioon (2015 & 2016)
Shray Ambe (2015 & 2016)
Yirong Wang (2015 & 2016)
Camira Williams-Liggins (2015 & 2016)
Huilin Chen (2016)
Chengchen Qui (2016)
Stephanie Zhang (2016)
Bobbye Hampton (2016)
Danetta Green (2016)