Share on Facebook

The Best Nutritionist-Approved Electrolyte Drinks in Canada

Sometimes spring water isn't enough: Try one of these thirst-quenching electrolyte drinks for maximum hydration.

1 / 8

Senior,asian,woman,drinking,water,after,break,exercising,at,nature,healthyImage credit: Shutterstock

Staying hydrated

Warmer weather is headed our way, ushering in sweaty outdoor workouts and sizzling afternoons at the beach or pool. Sunshine is good news if you have a vitamin D deficiency, but it’s not so great if you struggle to stay hydrated. “Warm weather, active lifestyles, and caffeine consumption can all dehydrate us,” says Lauren Minchen, New York-based nutritionist and nutrition consultant for Freshbit, the AI-driven visual diet diary app. However, she says adding electrolytes to your water can help.

“Thirst can be masked as hunger—so check in with yourself. Are you sipping water throughout the day?” adds Vicki Shanta Retelny, RDN, a culinary consultant and host of Nourishing Notes podcast. “If you are sweating excessively during your workouts, you’ll also have to replace electrolytes.”

(Related: Should You be Drinking Chlorophyll Water?)

2 / 8

Woman,drinking,water.Image credit: Shutterstock

What are electrolytes?

“Electrolytes help your body control the water balance in your cells,” Minchen explains. “They are also responsible for supporting healthy nerve function and muscle contraction and managing acid balance in the body.”

“Electrolytes include sodium, potassium, and magnesium,” says Amy Gorin, RDN, a plant-based registered dietitian and owner of Plant-Based Eats in Stamford, Connecticut. She explains that when you sweat, you lose both water and electrolytes. It’s important to quickly replace both the water and electrolytes that you lose after a sweaty gym session or day spent by the pool. Without proper hydration and electrolyte balance, you run the risk of sub-par heart and muscle function, according to Gorin and Minchen.

(Related: Does Coffee Dehydrate You?)

3 / 8

Close Up,of,beautiful,asian,woman,sport,athletes,drinking,water,withImage credit: Shutterstock

Signs of electrolyte imbalance

When your body is low on electrolytes, it struggles to stay hydrated and run on all cylinders. Minchen says you could experience these symptoms if you don’t replenish the electrolytes lost during intense exercise:

  • Muscle cramping or weakness
  • Heart palpitations
  • Dehydration
  • Fatigue or sluggishness
  • Irregular blood clotting
  • Trouble breathing
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Headaches

(Related: It’s the Summer of Two Wheels! Here Are Some Post-Ride Rituals to Try Now)

4 / 8

Female,hiker,drinking,bottle,of,water.Image credit: Shutterstock

Keep your muscles happy with electrolytes

You know your body struggles when it doesn’t have enough electrolytes. On the flipside, flooding your water with electrolytes before or during a workout might actually enhance athletic performance. Recent research suggests that drinking electrolyte-infused drinks can prevent muscle cramps better than water alone. Published in the Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition, the small study required 10 men to run in the heat, then rehydrate with either spring water or an oral rehydration solution full of electrolytes. After drinking, the men received electrical stimulation meant to induce muscle cramps. Cramp susceptibility decreased significantly after drinking electrolyte water versus spring water.

(Related: Why Exercise Can Be the Most Effective Way to Relieve Stress)

5 / 8

Female,football,player,holding,a,water,bottleImage credit: Shutterstock

What makes a healthy electrolyte drink?

You probably already know the perils of consuming too much sugar: pimples, energy slumps, tooth decay, and more. So it makes sense that when you’re looking for a healthy way to stay hydrated, sugar-free or low-sugar electrolyte drinks are best. Minchen also suggests prioritizing drinks containing the full spectrum of electrolytes: calcium, sodium, potassium, magnesium, and chloride. “Bonus if it also contains zinc, vitamin C, and B vitamins for added energy,” she says.

If your heart is set on a deliciously sweet beverage, Minchen says to opt for natural sweeteners (stevia, agave, or monk fruit extract). She recommends seeking drinks with no more than a couple of grams of sugar and no artificial coloring. “It should contain vegetable or fruit coloring only—beet juice or annatto,” she says.

We asked our experts about their favorite store-bought electrolyte drinks for hydration. Here’s what to order before your next intense exercise session.

(Related: 9 Health Reasons to Start Drinking Lime Water)

6 / 8

Nuun Sport Electrolyte Drink Tablets

Nuun Sport: Electrolyte Drink Tablets

Nuun drink tablets are easy to throw into your gym bag or car when you’re headed out for a busy day in the heat. Plunk a gluten-free, dairy-free, and soy-free tablet into your bottle or glass of water, and watch while it fizzes and dissolves into a flavored drink full of sodium, potassium, and magnesium.

Though Nuun Sport tastes sweet (thanks to stevia), each serving clocks in at only 15 calories and 2 grams of carbohydrates. It’s worth noting that four of the thirteen flavors include 40 mg of caffeine from green tea. That’s equivalent to a medium cup of coffee.


(Related: 8 Matcha Benefits That Will Make You a Tea Drinker)

7 / 8

Ultima Replenisher Electrolyte Hydration Powder

Ultima Replenisher Electrolyte Hydration Powder

Another electrolyte powder recommendation from Minchen, Ultima Replenisher is an ideal hydration solution if you’re counting calories. This stevia-sweetened powder has no calories or carbs. It is also naturally colored by ingredients like beta-carotene (an antioxidant that your body converts into vitamin A) and beet juice concentrate. Ultima Replenisher is also vegan, gluten-free, and certified organic. It’s available in several flavors, including pink lemonade and cherry pomegranate. This is a solid hydration choice if you have food sensitivities.


(Related: CBD Drinks Are Everywhere — Will They Help Me Relax?)

8 / 8

Essentia Bottled Water

Essentia bottled water

If you’re looking for a simple, tasteless electrolyte drink to stand in for regular bottled water, try Essentia. Recommended by Minchen, this bottled water is purified through reverse osmosis, then infused with “trace electrolytes,” according to the brand. In other words, Essentia bottled water is best for those who are already hydrated and simply want to replenish a few electrolytes lost during a mildly sweaty workout. This water is probably more hydrating than regular filtered water, but less hydrating than the other electrolyte-packed drinks in this article.

$70 for a pack of 12,

Now that you know about electrolyte drinks, this is whether or not it’s safe to drink water left out overnight

The Healthy
Originally Published on The Healthy