Electrolytes Explained

What are electrolytes and why do athletes need them? STACK provides the skinny on sodium, chloride, potassium, calcium and magnesium.

Gatorlytes

Carolina Panthers LB Luke Kuechly prefers an after-practice drink powder containing a blend of five electrolytes: sodium, chloride, potassium, calcium and magnesium. Here's what the stuff does.

Sodium: A.k.a. salt. The body uses it to control blood pressure and volume. It's necessary for muscles to work properly.

Chloride: Another important element for keeping body fluids balanced. An essential part of the stomach's digestive process.

Potassium: Helps muscles and nerves communicate. Works with sodium to keep fluid levels balanced in the body's cells.

Calcium: You have more calcium in your body than any other mineral. Your muscles, blood vessels and nervous system wouldn't work without it.

Magnesium: Vital for the contraction and relaxation of muscles. Also aids in transporting energy throughout the body.


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