Don’t Ignore Electrolytes, They’re Important

When it comes to nutrients, everyone knows that a regular and balanced intake of vitamins and minerals is a vital part of keeping your body healthy.

This also includes electrolytes: sodium, potassium, calcium, and magnesium.

However, electrolytes can often be overlooked, even though they play a vital part in the body’s self-regulation.

An imbalance in electrolytes could have a significant impact on your overall health, and severe imbalances may lead to some serious health issues.

A new study on electrolytes, conducted by Health University of Applied Sciences Tyrol and the University of Vienna in Austria, examines the average dietary intake of minerals and the dietary sources.

What’s Important

Electrolytes are minerals that carry an electric charge when dissolved in fluids.

They are essential for:

  • Muscle function
  • Neuronal processes
  • Bone composition and function
  • The transport of oxygen
  • Maintaining acid-base balance (i.e. pH level)
  • Maintaining water balance
  • Transporting nutrients into the cells
  • Because electrolytes have so many biological effects on the body, keeping them balanced is of great importance.

    The Details

    Sodium plays a key role in muscle and nerve function, and it helps the body to keep a balanced level of fluids. Its main source is table salt.

    Potassium works to control nerve impulses, the production of protein, and helps to convert sugar into glycogen (stored energy). Its main sources are bananas, dried fruits, oranges, green veggies, etc. 

    Calcium is crucial in the formation and maintenance of bone structure and muscle physiology. It’s essential for muscle contraction, blood coagulation, regulation of the hormonal system, and transmission of nerve impulses.

    Its main dietary sources are dairy products, soybeans, green leafy veggies, nuts, etc.

    Magnesium takes part in numerous biochemical reactions in the body, including nerve impulse, muscle function, protein synthesis, and energy production.

    Its main dietary sources are generally foods containing lots of fiber, like whole grains, green leafy veggies, nuts, etc.

    What Were the Results From the Study?

    The study lasted for one year and it involved an analysis of the daily consumption of dietary sources of electrolytes of a large group of healthy adults between the ages 18-65.

    The results indicated that:

  • Participants of all age groups had a high sodium intake
  • Potassium levels were the lowest for all age groups
  • More than half of all participants had low calcium
  • Almost half of them had low magnesium levels
  • 14% of them didn’t reach the minimum levels of any of the four electrolytes
  • 13% had adequate levels of three of the electrolytes
  • Only 1% of all participants reached the recommended values for all four electrolytes
  • In Conclusion

    The scientists who conducted the study stress that the increased sodium intake shouldn’t be ignored, and that there is an “urgent need to decrease salt intake”.

    Besides this, it could be concluded that there needs to be a greater diet diversity so that the recommended levels can be reached.

    We recommend you take a look at our MagTech Magnesium supplements with three types of magnesium with high absorption rates, to help with electrolyte levels and to promote better brain health.


    Resource: Schiefermeier-Mach, N.; Egg, S.; Erler, J.; Hasenegger, V.; Rust, P.; König, J.; Purtscher, A.E. Electrolyte Intake and Major Food Sources of Sodium, Potassium, Calcium and Magnesium among a Population in Western Austria. Nutrients 2020, 12, 1956. doi: https://doi.org/10.3390/nu12071956 

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