Archive for minerals

Focus On Vitamins & Minerals: Potassium

Posted in Fitness, Health & Wellness, Nutrition, Self Improvement with tags , , , , , , , , on January 30, 2012 by Angela

If you run or workout with any regularity, I am sure you have heard caution of not only rehydrating but also the need to replenish key vitamins & minerals which can be lost during strenuous activities.

I previously did a post on electrolytes (which can be read here: Focus On Vitamins & Minerals: Electrolytes ) and gave a basic definition. Potassium is one often mentioned electrolyte.

Potassium is very important to the proper function of our body. It is required for smooth muscle & cellular functions, nerve impulse transmission, cardiovascular, blood pressure and for converting glucose into glycogen.

The body naturally “loses” most of its excreted potassium through sweat and urine. As increased physical activity breaks down our stores to supply energy for the workout a depletion of potassium occurs and as a result an even greater concentration is lost.

Here are a couple of resources to get you informed on how to naturally get and/or keep potassium in your diet: High Potassium Foods List & Potassium Rich Foods Chart

DISCLAIMER: As always this is not meant as a means to diagnose but rather as a tool to inform, promote and facilitate health & wellness dialogue. Please consult your physician with any concerns and questions you may have, they are able to measure levels and provide definitive diagnosis.

~Peace & Blessings~

Focus On Vitamins & Minerals: Electrolytes

Posted in Fitness, Focus on Vitamins & Minerals, Health & Wellness with tags , , , , , , , , on August 22, 2011 by Angela

Many of us have heard the word electrolytes being tossed around here or there in conversations but when it all comes down to it, there still exists some confusion as to what this talk is really all about. Especially if you are embarking on a regular exercise and/or fitness regimen it is important to have a basic understanding of the importance of what electrolytes are and why it’s necessary to replenish them.

One of the simplest ways I’ve found to define electrolytes is this:

Salts and minerals that can conduct electrical impulses in the body. Common human electrolytes are sodium chloride, potassium, calcium, and sodium bicarbonate. Electrolytes control the fluid balance of the body and are important in muscle contraction, energy generation, and almost every major biochemical reaction in the body.

Electrolyte levels within the body are apt to be in constant fluctuation due to intake and outtake of fluid. This is especially so when exercising because key electrolytes are lost in sweat, most notably sodium and potassium as well as calcium and magnesium.

It is important to replenish these just as quickly so that our nerves, cells, etc. continue to function at their optimum level.

Imbalance of electrolyte levels can result in serious complications to muscles and organs which is why it is stressed to reintroduce these back into the system as soon as possible.
One quick and easy way to do this is by drinking sports drinks or an electrolyte replacement drink before, during or immediately after exercising.

There are many sports drinks on the market to choose from and some even opt for taking the place in people’s everyday lives rather than regular H2O.

As always it is very important to consult with your physician as you embark on any weight loss, health or fitness program. They are able to administer specific tests to gauge your various mineral levels and able to make suggestions on what would work best for you in your program.

If you are like me then you may also wish to incorporate foods into your diet that naturally supplement. This is something I started a long time ago when I was iron deficient and determined not to rely upon iron tablets.

A physician or nutritionist is also best able to tell you how you can naturally supplement your fitness program with the intake of various minerals in what you eat such as fruits and nuts being an excellent source of potassium, etc.

~Peace & Blessings~