SHIFTED Hydration was designed to be a best-in-class electrolyte and hydration supporting drink supplement. In this article I go through some of the science behind the product.
By Dr. Adam Gonzalez
SHIFTED’s Chief Scientific Officer
WATER IS CRITICAL FOR A STATE OF BALANCE
Water intake is second only to oxygen in necessity for maintaining life. The human body is comprised of 45-75% water. Athletes and more muscular individuals typically hold more water because muscle contains a higher percentage of water, compared to fat tissue.
The goal of “staying hydrated” is to maintain a state of balance called euhydration, which is a narrow range of total body water that is optimal for proper bodily function and overall health.
It’s quite common for athletes to dial in their nutrition by hitting macronutrient targets but forget about their hydration. In fact, athletes are notorious for arriving at workouts and games in an already dehydrated state, which can compromise performance.
Water plays a role in:
- Numerous biochemical reactions
- Maintaining blood volume
- Transporting nutrients and other important molecules throughout the body
- Regulating body temperature by 1.) absorbing heat from metabolic processes and 2.) dissipating heat through sweating
Staying hydrated is essential. Even mild dehydration can:
- Increase fatigue
- Decrease motivation
- Impair concentration, cognition, and sport skills
- Impair cardiovascular and thermoregulatory function
- Decrease sprint, power, strength, and endurance performance.
So, how much water do you need? Well, the recommendation to drink eight 8-oz glasses of water per day is actually not backed by science.
It’s not a bad general recommendation, but fluid intake is based upon matching water lost through sweat plus several other factors such as age, body size, body composition, exercise, and exposure to hot environments. Fluid needs can even vary from day to day depending on what you may be doing that day.
So, there is no one-size-fits-all recommendation. It is recommended that you monitor your own hydration status by using the combination of body weight, urine color, and thirst.
WATER ALONE IS NOT ENOUGH
Electrolytes play a vital role in maintaining proper hydration and supporting various physiological functions within the human body. These electrically charged ions, including sodium, potassium, calcium, magnesium, chloride, and phosphorus, are essential for regulating fluid balance, nerve impulses, and muscle contractions.
Simply put, electrolytes also help drive fluid into the cells that need hydration. In fact, if you drink excessive amounts of sodium-free water, it can dangerously dilute blood sodium levels putting you at risk for a condition known as hyponatremia.
Electrolyte intake is vital for any active individual. Not only is it crucial that you get in enough water daily, but you must also replenish electrolytes lost through daily excretion and sweat to prevent deficiencies and maintain an optimal environment for the body to thrive.
Electrolyte balance is crucial for ensuring efficient cellular communication, muscle function, and overall hydration status, making it imperative that athletes consider both water and electrolyte intake for maintaining a healthy and well-functioning body.
However, despite what several other supplement companies are trying to market, there is no evidence to suggest that excessive intake of electrolytes – beyond daily recommended intakes – will improve overall health or training adaptations.
What gets you hot and sweaty? Whether its grueling sessions in the gym, an outdoor hike, a hot day at the beach, or a long work shift, sweating can lead to drastic electrolyte loss which must be replenished from the diet.
SHIFTED HYDRATION offers a balanced ratio of the most important electrolytes to prevent deficiencies and replenish those lost through sweat, in combination with other highly-effective functional ingredients – Vitamin C, taurine, coconut water powder, and pomegranate juice powder.
Let’s breakdown the electrolytes found in SHIFTED HYDRATION:
Sodium is an essential mineral that plays a crucial role in maintaining fluid balance, regulating blood pressure, nerve function, and muscle contractions in the body. The most important electrolytes to replace during and following exercise are sodium and chloride because they are the primary electrolytes lost through sweat.
With greater sodium losses, athletes are also more prone to suffer from muscle cramping. Including sodium in your hydration supplement also aids fluid uptake by helping the body retain more of the fluid consumed.
Potassium is an essential mineral with vital roles in the body involving fluid balance, muscle function, and nerve function. Potassium intake is also linked with blood pressure regulation as it helps counteract the effects of sodium, potentially reducing the risk of high blood pressure and related cardiovascular issues.
Most sports drinks provide little to no potassium, and people do not typically meet the recommended intake for potassium since it is most abundant in unprocessed foods such as fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and dairy.
Maintaining an adequate intake of calcium is important for overall health, especially for bone health and proper muscle and nerve function. The majority (about 99%) of the body's calcium is stored in bones and teeth, where it provides structural support and strength.
The remaining 1% of calcium circulates in the bloodstream, where it plays essential roles in various bodily functions, including muscle contraction, nerve function, and blood clotting. When blood calcium levels drop, the body can pull calcium from the reserves stored in bones, emphasizing the importance of adequate dietary intake to support both immediate bodily needs and long-term bone health.
Maintaining an adequate amount of this essential mineral is crucial for overall health, especially bone strength, energy production, and cellular function. Therefore, low phosphorus intake or deficiency could impair athletic performance. Nevertheless, since phosphorus is found in a wide variety of foods including meat, poultry, fish, dairy products, nuts, seeds, and legumes, most people get an adequate amount of phosphorus through a balanced diet. Only small amounts are needed in a hydration supplement.
Ensuring an adequate intake of magnesium is important for overall health, as it is involved in multiple fundamental processes within the body. Magnesium is a cofactor in over 300 biochemical reactions in the body that regulate a wide variety of functions including muscle building, nerve and muscle function, carbohydrate and fat metabolism, ATP synthesis, glucose control, and blood pressure regulation.
It is also essential for maintaining intracellular calcium and potassium levels. Given magnesium’s many roles, it is clearly important for athletic performance. Yet, magnesium deficiency remains common. Unfortunately, even marginal magnesium deficiency can impair exercise performance.
Zinc is an essential mineral that plays a vital role in overall health, immune function, wound healing, and various metabolic processes within the body. Zinc is essential for macronutrient metabolism, gene expression, and normal growth and development. Since it is not stored in the body, it must be consumed daily.
Elevate your hydration
SHIFTED HYDRATION offers an optimal blend of electrolytes and hydration supporting ingredients like Vitamin C, taurine, coconut water powder, and pomegranate juice powder. SHIFTED designed its hydration formula to maximize your body’s ability to stay well hydrated in sweaty situations. It works great as an addition to our pre-workout, as an intra-workout drink, or even a refreshing post-workout recovery drink.