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how to replace lost nutrients by dax

fozzybearfozzybear Posts: 17,082
If you are sweating a lot you will be loosing Sodium (salt) & Potassium and general electrolites.
Isotonic drinks are ideal for replacing these electrolites.

Sweating is the way in which the body maintains its core temperature of 37C but this will result in the loss of body fluid and electrolytes like chloride, calcium, phosphate, magnesium, sodium and potassium.

If the levels of electrolyte are not checked and replenished then, potentially, this can lead to dehydration followed eventually by circulatory collapse...

Electrolytes are essential minerals that help control the osmosis of water between the different body compartments, as well as maintaining the acid-base balance required for normal cellular activities.

Carbohydrate is stored as glucose in the liver and muscle, it is the most efficient source of energy as it requires less oxygen to be burnt that either protein or fat.

During a period of exercise, the muscles increase the uptake of blood glucose, which the liver produces from its stores, to prevent the levels from falling.

The carbohydrate stores of the body are depleted gradually and if they are not restocked will result in a reduced performance.

Hence, consuming carbohydrate before and after exercise will prevent blood glucose levels from dropping too low and maintain the body's glycogen stores.

As many athletes cannot consume food before or during exercise, many opt for a formulated isotonic drink to provide the necessary carbohydrate required.
Factors that influence the speed at which fluid from a drink can get into the body include the speed at which it is emptied from the stomach and also the rate at which the drink is absorbed through the walls of the small intestine.

The higher the level of carbohydrate in a drink, the slower the rate at which the stomach empties.

Isotonic drinks with a carbohydrate level of 8% will be disposed from the stomach at a rate similar to that of water.

Electrolytes like sodium that are also present in the drink will reduce the urine output, enabling the fluid to be quickly emptied from the stomach - promoting the absorption from the intestine and encouraging fluid retention.

Ingesting drinks with no electrolyte content over short periods will result in a rise in plasma volume and a fall in the sodium concentration and osmolality (number of particles in solution) of the blood, making it more dilute.

The dilution can lead to an increase in urine production, promoting a loss of bodily fluids which counteract the effects of re-hydration.

The fall in blood osmolality and sodium concentration can reduce the drive to drink - which works against complete re-hydration.

Isotonic drinks provide the same amount of sodium as blood plasma.

Drinking plain water can be a poor choice when a high fluid intake is necessary, as it contains none of the carbohydrate or electrolytes that promote a more rapid recovery after a session of strenuous exercise.

ISo drinks really do work.
Personally I use Hi-5 Iso and currently trying their 4:1 Carb/Protein drink, the protein assists in the absorbtion of the carbs.

Try experimenting with various makes and one week use just water and the next use a carb/iso drink, you should really feel the difference.

btw if your electrolites, sodium & potassium become too low you stand a chance of severe leg cramps, which can be very painful.
Bannanas and potatoes for potassium.



  • hsahsa Posts: 220
    Nice save fozzy.

    I suffer from headaches after long rides but I do try and stay hydrated and I eat on long rides (bananas, oat bars etc).

    I do get salty residue over my forehead and face (nice huh?). I have suffered from severe leg cramp once on the leg burner at Nant-Yr-Arian awhile back but nothing since. I feel I just pushed it too far too soon that time.

    After reading dax's post I think I will have to look into trying replacement drinks to see if I can sort the headaches and recovery times out.

    Anyone else tried High5 4:1? Are there any other recommendations? Looking for during and post ride.
  • daxiondaxion Posts: 104
    There is a good possiblility that your headaches are from dehydration.
    you need to balance your electrolites.

    How many litres of water do you drink evry day. 2l min 3-4l if you are training, sometmes mores. Too much water will have the opposite effect and dilute you electrolites.
    Dave - Spin instructor
  • hsahsa Posts: 220
    I cycle offroad 2-3 times a week and swim once a week, nothing too strenuous but the occasional Saturday ride can go to 20-30 miles.

    I only drink a litre or so per day on average. When I am cycling that goes up to 2-3 litres for the day (more if it's very hot).
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