If you’re struggling with headaches, muscle cramps, or fatigue while fasting or on a low-carb diet there’s a good chance you’re low in electrolytes –especially sodium.
My not-so-secret ingredient for proper hydration? LMNT electrolytes.
What are Electrolytes?
If you’re wondering what are electrolytes? I’m here to help.
First off, there are 7 important electrolytes that are found in the body:
What Do Electrolytes Do?
Electrolytes are minerals that conduct an electrical charge when mixed with water.1
Helping to regulate a variety of your body’s essential functions, electrolytes are critical when it comes to:
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- pH Balance
- Nerve Signaling
- Muscle Contraction
Are High Sodium Levels Dangerous?
We hear quite a bit about hypertension and the need to decrease salt.
However, the truth is, many people who are very active or on low carb diets are low in sodium, the most important electrolyte.
Have you ever been dehydrated? This used to happen to me, often. When it did, I would get a nasty migraine.
Here are some additional signs of dehydration:
- Dry Mouth
- Muscle Cramps
- Loss of Appetite (can be accompanied by sugar cravings)
- Low Blood Pressure
Hydration is not just about “how many bottles of water should I drink a day” –BTW, I drink around twelve 8 ounce glasses per day.
Hydration is also about how to rehydrate effectively.
My favorite electrolyte supplement is LMNT which contains:
- 1,000 mg Sodium
- 200 mg Potassium
- 60 mg Magnesium
LMNT electrolytes are sugar free, with no artificial ingredients or wacky chemical food dyes and coloring.
This electrolyte formula contains enough sodium to have a significant impact on my health and sense of well being.
What is Hyponatremia?
The above shot of the sodium level from my lab results shows that I was suffering from slight hyponatremia or sodium deficiency.
Corrected Sodium Levels
I’ve become much more emphatic about starting my day with electrolytes since the test result above showed I have low sodium levels.
I live at high altitude and make a point of hydrating, drinking a lot of water. The issue is that I can over-hydrate and end up diluting my electrolytes.
The solution? Supplementing with LMNT.
How to Increase Sodium Levels
Low sodium levels, referred to as hyponatremia, can have detrimental effects on hormones, immune system, brain function, and much more.
Sodium deficiency can be a serious problem among athletes as well as those following a low carb diet.
LMNT electrolyte supplements have a full gram of sodium per packet which is crucial for my overall health2 and they do not contain sugar, making them a great hack for keto.
Electrolytes and Keto Flu Symptoms
Whole food diets such as Paleo and Keto are naturally low in sodium.
These diets do not include the processed foods that contain added salt, but it’s not just the fact that your sodium intake is lower when you eat this way, it’s that you’re also excreting more sodium when your body is operating in a carb-restricted state.
Have you ever heard of the Keto Flu? It can cause headaches, fatigue, and muscle cramps which are often ameliorated by increasing electrolyte intake.
Trust me, a keto headache is no joke.
LMNT Electrolytes and 18/6 Intermittent Fasting
Over the last decade I’ve enjoyed practicing an 18/6 intermittent fasting model now and then. Doing a 16 hour fast, with an 8 hour eating window is a great way to detox without doing a multi-day fast.
When I do this short fast, I stop eating after dinner, sleep for 9 hours, then skip breakfast in the morning.
When I wake up extremely thirsty I prepare an electrolyte drink, using LMNT to rehydrate as I continue to fast until lunchtime.
Drink LMNT Electrolyte Powder
When we do not replenish electrolytes during a fast, we may feel more tired, crampy, and weak than normal.
Increasing electrolyte intake may be the answer.
LMNT Drink Hydration Packs
My boys played sports growing up and it bummed me out when they were given commercial sports drinks full of artificial dyes and empty calories.
I wish we had LMNT electrolytes back then.
They’re family friendly and a fantastic on-the-go solution for beating dehydration.
The boys love them, their favorite flavor is lime. I drink a lot of the orange, and my husband is a huge fan of watermelon.
Detox Drinks to Retox
My younger son also uses LMNT hydration packets as a mixer for alcoholic beverages and helped me create these recipes:
Water With Electrolytes
Mixed drinks that are low carb are great, but I’m more focused on everyday hydration and water with electrolytes.
When we add LMNT electrolytes to our water, we get quick and flavorful hydration drinks that support our healthy lifestyle.
Best Hydration Powder
Some consider LMNT the best hydration powder. When it comes to the science-based formula made without sugar that may be the case.
I think my homemade electrolyte powder is better because I increase the magnesium, a critical ingredient. My electrolyte recipe is also far less expensive and it also reduces waste by eliminating packaging.
Still, if your #1 concern is flavor, LMNT can’t be beat!
Homemade Electrolyte Drinks
For those of you who love my keto recipes and are in need of hydration help, I’ve got you covered.
Learn how to make your own electrolyte powder in order to create amazing electrolyte water.
What’s your favorite way to hydrate? Leave a comment and let me know!
I have a hard time drinking anything except water…Stomach issues with anything else. I am going to look into LMNT It sounds like something that would definitely be a big plus!
Bonny, I hope you love it as much as we do!
Heather W. says
I make two 3/4-of-a-quart everyday (morning and afternoon) based on the DIY electrolyte formula put out by KetoGains (who helped formulate LMNT). Most days I have one more 3/4 just after supper without the Mg and K– just the NaCl. I am on a ketogenic diet, am very active, and have mild cerebral palsy– so my electrolyte needs are substantial. Despite my intentional intakes I will still periodically suffer from episodes that feel like the start of a hear attack– for these, I keep LMNT on hand. Within seconds, the episodes subside. I am grateful I figured out what was going on (after years of suffering with these scary moments that leave me wiped out).
Heather, thank you for sharing your life and lifestyle in detail! Very inspiring.
Furhana Afrid says
I’ve been an ardent follower of your recipes since switching to low carb lifestyle many years ago. I work out daily and would love to try LMNT electrolytes.
Furhana, thanks for your comment and your kind words too :-)
Kristin Osmar says
Like other folks that commented, I look forward to your electrolyte recipe. I have low sodium levels as well, and low blood pressure. I’ve tried other commercial electrolyte powders which were truly so sweet ( with stevia) and the ‘natural flavors’ were gag-worthy! I couldn’t drink them. I live on the Western Slope of Colorado, close to a mile high and dry as a bone in summer. Thanks for your article and the opportunity to win your book and a box of LMNT!!
Kristin, thanks for your great comment! Here you go:
We use lots of Himalayan pink salt and Celtic sea salt in addition to drinking plenty of water. We’ve added electrolyte powders in more recent years as our kids are athletes. Very recently tried LMNT and LOVE the way they taste. My teenage daughter’s fav is watermelon and mine is raspberry or citrus. I like mine salty! They are so pricey that we have to ration them, lol.
Tiffany, glad to hear you and yours enjoy LMNT too!