Best Supplements to Keep You Hydrated, According to Dietitians
"Proper hydration balance is essential for proper body function and good health. This not only includes getting enough water but also maintaining a balance of electrolytes," explains Amy Gorin, MS, RDN, a plant-based registered dietitian and owner of Plant-Based Eats in Stamford, CT. "When you sweat either through exercise or because you live in a humid environment, you lose electrolytes through that sweat, and you need to replace them," she continues, noting that electrolytes include potassium, magnesium, sodium, and calcium.
Indeed, for athletes and fitness enthusiasts, hydration may be of particular concern. "If you are working out a lot and losing electrolytes through sweating, a supplement may be a good option to maintain hydration," says Katie Dodd, MS, RDN, CSG, LD, FAND, The Geriatric Dietitian. Read on to learn more about which hydration supplements are most effective and worth your money, and for more on how to eat healthy, don't miss 7 Healthiest Foods to Eat Right Now.
An electrolyte powder stick favorite of Eat This, Not That! Staffers, nutritionists agree this is one of the best of the bunch. "Using a hydration product such as HALO which contains electrolytes can help to rehydrate your body quickly by replacing missing electrolytes and allowing your gut to absorb more water," offers Keri Glassman, RD, author of four bestselling books on health and nutrition and founder of Nutritious Life. Choose from Lemonade and Pink Lemonade flavors.
Designs for Health Electrolyte Synergy
"We like Designs for Health Electrolyte Synergy because aside from it being a quick way to restore the main electrolytes like potassium, sodium, chloride, and magnesium that are lost from the body during excessive sweating from heat or exercise, it tastes good, is vegetarian, GMO-free, soy-free, and gluten- and dairy-free," say Lyssie Lakatos, RDN, CDN, CFT & Tammy Lakatos Shames, RDN, CDN, CFT, aka The Nutrition Twins, authors of the 21-Day Body Reboot and members of the Eat This, Not That! Medical Expert Board.
They're also fans of this hydration powder because unlike many other sugar-sweetened and calorie-loaded hydration powders on the market, this product is sweetened with calorie-free stevia, so it's only 10 calories and a good option for those who are looking to lose weight or who want to avoid added sugars or artificial sweeteners. The Nutrition Twins report that some of their clients enjoy making popsicles with this lemon-orange flavored powder.
Trace Minerals 40,000 Volts Electrolyte Concentrate
One of The Nutrition Twins' favorite things about this electrolyte drink is that in addition to providing sodium, potassium, magnesium, and chloride "to help replenish electrolytes lost after a workout, it also has added boron to keep bones strong and to help offset the loss of calcium that is excreted through sweat." They note that many electrolyte replacements leave out this mineral and also lack the third-party quality and purity testing that Trace Minerals has. "We squeeze Trace Minerals 40,000 Volts into our water before, during, or after strenuous activity. It's also certified vegan," they add.
NOW Potassium Citrate Powder
Say "all aboard" for the potassium train! "When you're doing hard exercise where you're losing a lot of sweat, you also lose electrolytes and will need to refuel those. Potassium is an essential mineral that's also an electrolyte. If you don't have potassium-rich foods such as coconut water, avocado, or banana on hand after exercise, using this potassium powder can save your day," says Gorin, adding that each 1/4-teaspoon serving contains 10% of the daily value for potassium. "Just make sure not to take too much and to take with food and at least eight ounces of a beverage," she advises.
Electrolit Electrolyte Hydration
This bottled drink is a solid choice if you prefer your drinks pre-mixed. "This drink contains a mix of the electrolytes potassium, magnesium, calcium, and other nutrients to help with hydration and recovery from exercise," says Gorin, who particularly likes the orange flavor. "Although it does contain added sugar, I like that it's not in the first few ingredients." Other flavors available include grape, strawberry kiwi, and fruit punch.
Liquid I.V. Hydration Multiplier
"This is an electrolyte drink mix that you pour into your bottle of water. This product contains electrolytes and vitamins (vitamin C and several B vitamins)," says Dodd. "So in addition to replacing the electrolytes you lost through sweating, it's also like taking your vitamins!" Choose from a flavors lineup of lemon lime, strawberry, passion fruit, açai berry, watermelon, guava, and apple pie. There's also a variety pack option if you want a taste of 'em all.
Ultima Replenisher Electrolyte Drink Mix
Dodd says this is another good supplement for hydration. "This product is made with stevia, so has no calories and no added sugar. Plus it has vitamin C!" says Dodd. "It's an excellent way to add back the electrolytes you lost and stay hydrated without adding calories."
To see if you should be adding these supplements to your diet, check out 15 Ways to Tell If You're Dehydrated.