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Electrolytes In Your Diet

Electrolyte word cloud conceptAs you put a little more attention to both the quality and quantity of your food intake, electrolytes need to be part of that healthy mix. Especially as you take on a Protein Sparing Modified Fast or PSMF diet program, it becomes more important to start thinking about smarter food choices.

Once you start planning and preparing healthy meals, you need to factor in important vitamins and nutrients as well as minerals that your body needs. It is not enough that you lose weight. That is the primarily, that is true. But it is more important to keep both your mind and body healthy as you do it. After all, losing weight is often times done to improve your health. If your diet compromises your health, then that defeats the purpose of your diet. With this, you need to consider the benefits of incorporating electrolyte-rich food sources.

But what exactly are they?

Probably one of the most important jobs of the electrolytes is regulating your heartbeat through the muscles that make it move. The muscles and neurons in your system are oftentimes referred to as “electrical tissues”. An electrolyte is a substance that produces the much-needed solution that conducts “electricity” in your body.

According to Medical News Today, the “electricity” is essential for life. With that in mind, your body is reliant on the electrolyte movement all throughout your body – from your cells, organs, tissues, and muscles.

What are the benefits of electrolytes

Now that you have a better understanding of what they are exactly, it is important to know more about the benefits an electrolyte-rich meal especially when you are on a PSMF diet.

To start with, electrolytes play a crucial role in helping your body perform even the simplest function and movement. This is because electrolytes help regulate, promote, and even stimulate your nerve and muscle functions as you go about your day.

Get To Know The Role Of Electrolytes In Your DietMuscle benefits

The way you contract and move your muscle allows mobility. When you raise your hand or swim or run to the store – all of these movements are possible because of the electrolytes in your body. It allows you to move your body whichever way you want. As you use and move your muscles, it contracts efficiently when you have sufficient magnesium, calcium, sodium and potassium intake. Without it, you run the risk of weakness and muscle cramps. Since your heart is also a muscle, electrolytes can reduce the chances of heart arrhythmia which is an irregular heartbeat according to Medicine Net.

Nerve benefits

Electrolytes also help in nerve impulses. This is crucial for your nervous system to function properly. The presence of potassium, calcium, and sodium allows the ion to be pushed across the membranes to create the charge needed to send out those nerve impulses. Without it, you would have a hard time moving anything in your body.

These also keep a close eye on a number of fluids all over your body. Our body is mostly in liquid state. That means a low level of fluid will compromise the ability of your cells to function. When your fluid intake is adequate, your blood pressure is also kept in check. A well-hydrated body can also regulate your blood pH which is the alkalinity or acidity of your blood.

Where do you get electrolytes

The next question that you should be asking is how can you include them in your Protein Sparing Modified Fast diet program? Before you look at the actual food sources, it makes more sense to understand the exact vitamins and minerals that you need to get enough electrolytes in your body.

  • Calcium. This has one of the most abundant electrolyte minerals inside your system. It also helps promote strong teeth as well as bone health within your body.
  • Potassium. This helps regulate the electrical activity in and around your heart as well as promotes growth by breaking down carbohydrates from your PSMF diet.
  • Magnesium. Apart from helping regulate the levels of potassium, calcium and even sodium in your body, it also helps relieve muscle aches and spasms.
  • Sodium / Chloride. This can help regulate blood pressure but you need to closely guard your consumption as too much sodium can result in hypertension.

 

Vegetables

Incorporating  vegetables into your meal plan it like hitting two birds with one stone. First, it can give you the electrolyte you need. At the same time, it gives a good mix of vitamins and minerals that are needed to keep your body strong and healthy.

 

Dangers of electrolyte imbalance

As with anything in life, too much of something is bad for you. In this case, consuming too much of electrolyte-rich food and water sources can have detrimental effects on your body. It is important to have a PSMF diet that is rich in fruits and vegetables. This combination promotes a healthy balance of electrolytes in your system.

Admittedly, it is tricky to identify the ups and downs of your electrolyte level. Your kidneys try to help monitor and keep your electrolyte level constant but there are times when our body just can’t keep up. It is important to be aware of the signs of an electrolyte imbalance in your system. Here are some of the signs that you need to have your electrolyte level checked.

  • Twitching and weakness in your body. When this persists, it can lead to seizures.
  • Hypercalcemia. This can take place where there is too much calcium in the bloodstream according to Health Line. This happens as result of bones weakening and breaking down. This can lead to kidney stones and interfere with how your brain and heart work together.
  • Hypernatremia and hyponatremia. This is an indication of too much or too little sodium.
  • Hyperkalemia and hypokalemia. This means you either have too much or too little potassium.
  • Restlessness and anxiety. This can set in when there is an electrolyte imbalance in the body.
  • Headaches and insomnia. Lack of electrolytes can make it hard to get enough sleep.

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