Human bodies are about 60% water. That means it’s essential to stay hydrated in order to look and feel your best. Electrolytes are minerals with an electrical charge that helps regulate body functions and keep you feeling refreshed. Daily activities like sweating can quickly deplete your body’s electrolytes. To stay hydrated, you have to replenish your body’s reserves of potassium, sodium, calcium, magnesium, bicarbonate, fluoride, and phosphorus. A rich mineral diet will help your nerve signals fire faster, improve energy levels, and prevent muscle cramps.
Electrolyte drinks aren’t just for athletes looking to increase their performance. Everyone must stay hydrated, especially breastfeeding mothers, to look and feel their best. These hard-working moms produce about a quarter of milk daily to feed their little ones. By adding breastfeeding drinks packed with electrolytes, they can increase milk production. Skip the sports drinks full of added sugar and artificial coloring. Instead, choose one of these seven healthy alternatives to keep you and your family hydrated and happy.
1. Coconut Water
Coconut water is the naturally occurring juice found inside the coconut. It’s high in potassium, sodium, calcium, and magnesium. You don’t have to climb up a tree with a machete to find coconut water. There are many bottled versions at your local grocery store. Just make sure to check the nutrition facts for any added sugar. While coconut water is naturally sweet, some brands still add sugar for taste. Look for brands that do not use artificial preservatives or sweeteners and are not made from concentrate.
2. Salted Lemon Water
Make your own electrolyte drink at home by mixing two tablespoons of lemon juice with a pinch of salt in a glass of water. The lemon juice contains about as much potassium as a typical sports drink beverage, without any added sugars or artificial flavors. The salt provides the necessary sodium to help you absorb the water you drink to stay hydrated longer. In a pinch, a glass of lemon water with a bit of salt can help cure dehydration.
Everyone knows milk is rich in calcium but provides other essential electrolytes like potassium and sodium. It is also rich in protein and carbs, which can help you feel satiated and hydrated. If you choose a plant-based lifestyle or are lactose intolerant, reaching for a glass of milk may not be for you. However, a quick cup of milk is an affordable alternative to sugary and expensive sports drinks.
4. Bone Broth
Nursing moms not only need more electrolytes than the average woman, but they also need to consume more calories to keep up with their milk supply. It makes sense. Not only are they feeding themselves, but they are also providing nutrition to their baby. It can be challenging to consume enough calories if you are a mama with a busy lifestyle. Having chicken or beef bone broth on hand provides a quick, easy-to-sip snack. Plus, it is rich in minerals like phosphorous, sodium, and calcium.
5. Electrolyte Tabs or Powders
Electrolyte tabs or powders quickly dissolve in a glass of water to provide the essential minerals you need to stay hydrated. However, many typical brands, like Liquid IV, include a lot of added sugar. Nuun provides hydration with only 1g of added sugar and no artificial sweeteners. Some premade mixes also contain caffeine, which isn’t the best for your baby. These can be handy to keep in your purse when you are on the go – but mixing a homemade electrolyte beverage can help you avoid unwanted ingredients.
6. Fruit Juice
Natural fruit juices are packed with electrolytes. Some mineral-rich juices include tart cherry, orange, and watermelon. Watermelon juice also has L-citrulline, an amino acid that can enhance oxygen production. Mix a quick electrolyte drink using a splash of juice to brighten up a glass of water. Juice is not usually high in sodium content. Adding a pinch of salt can help pump up your hydration. Check the nutrition label to ensure your juice has no added sugar.
7. Greater Than
If having to mix your fruit juice electrolyte drink seems like a little more than you can handle daily, consider Greater Than. They’ve already mixed electrolyte-packed ingredients to fuel your hydration, with no added sugar or artificial flavors. Their base is real fruit juice and coconut water – which we know work. Unlike standard fruit juice, Greater Than adds a healthy dash of sea salt to help you stay refreshed longer. Moms who use these handy juice boxes have reported increased milk production. Enjoy delicious flavors, including orange mango, pomegranate grape, and peach clementine. Not only are these great for moms, but they also work as a healthier juice box alternative to help keep your kids hydrated all day long.