What are ionic drinks?
Ionic drinks are a group of sports drinks designed to replenish the human body with minerals and trace elements that are essential for the proper functioning of the body and which are lost due to sweating during physical activity. A lack of these substances causes, for example, muscle cramps. Ionic drinks may also contain carbohydrates (maltodextrin, sucrose, glucose or fructose) or amino acids.
Classification of ionic drinks
Ionic drinks are classified on the basis of their osmolality, which indicates the amount of osmotically active substances in 1 kg of water. In the case of sports drinks, this is the concentration of carbohydrates, ions and other substances. According to the relationship between the osmolality of the drink and the internal environment of the human body (usually between 285 and 290 mOsmol/kg), we distinguish between hypotonic, isotonic and hypertonic drinks.
Hypotonic beverages are those whose osmolality is lower than the internal environment of the human body. These beverages are suitable for sports in which fluid is lost through perspiration over a prolonged period of time, e.g. endurance running or cycling, and the bulk of the sweat is water.
Isotonic ionic beverages are characterized by osmolality at the level of our internal environment. They are suitable both during and after physical activities that do not last more than an hour, such as indoor classes, gym or tennis. Sweat is more concentrated in these activities, but the body does not lose significant amounts of fluid.
Hypertonic drinks are characterised by their higher osmolality compared to the human body. These dehydrate the body, making them unsuitable during any sport, and need to be thoroughly washed down. They can be consumed in order to replenish mineral and energy losses after long and strenuous physical activity.
What are ionic drinks for?
The minerals contained in the drinks maintain the ionic balance in the human body. In addition to these, simple carbohydrates, amino acids or stimulants can also be found in the composition, which together provide:
- adherence to a proper drinking regime,
- supporting athletic performance,
- reducing the feeling of fatigue,
- replenishing energy sources,
- speedingup recovery after exercise.
Which ionic drink to choose?
The most commonly sold variants are powdered ionic drinks allowing easy dosing according to the needs of each individual. Other variants are the so‑called "ionic" drinks. Ionic tabletswhich can be dissolved in a specified amount of water, or ready‑made ionic drinks ready for immediate consumption. The range includes Nutrend, Isostar or Extrifit ionic drinks. The unique product represents Vilgain Intra Workoutwhich, in addition to electrolytes, also contains simple carbohydrates and proteins to support performance and subsequent recovery.