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Sodium

(100mg as sodium carbonate)

Sodium is a key mineral and electrolyte that is mostly stored in blood and the fluid around cells. It’s important for your body to maintain the proper balance of water and sodium in and around your cells for proper nerve and muscle function and to regulate blood pressure.

There’s a lot of focus by the big sports drink brands on the loss of sodium when you sweat. It’s true that your body loses sodium when you sweat, but everyone loses sodium at different levels – anywhere from 200mg to 1,100 mg of sodium per pound of sweat loss. Once you factor in age, gender, weather conditions and exertion levels, you see that sodium loss for an 8 year old budding soccer player on a cool Fall day is going to be much different from that of a 20 year old college football player during summer practice.

The Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA) of sodium is 2,300mg/day for healthy individuals 50 years of age or younger. For African Americans, or those with high blood pressure, diabetes or hypertension, the RDA is only 1,500mg / day. The problem is, the average American kid aged 6-18 consumes 3,300 mg of sodium per day, with teenagers aged 14-18 consuming over 3,600 mg per day!!! Too much sodium in kid’s diets is problematic for many reasons. Too much sodium is a leading cause of Type II Diabetes in kids and consuming too much sodium as a kid trains your taste buds to like salty foods and drinks. Those trained taste buds could encourage the overconsumption of sodium as an adult. According to the American Heart Association, overconsumption of sodium increases your risk for stroke, heart failure, osteoporosis, stomach cancer and kidney disease.

According to the US CDC, kids get sodium in a lot of the foods they eat: cereal at breakfast, sandwiches at lunch, processed food snacks and many of the sauces or salad dressings they may eat at dinnertime. A great fact sheet on sodium by the CDC can be found here.

Sodium by itself is not bad for you – it is a key electrolyte needed for proper nerve and muscle function. However, too much sodium is bad for you. The big sports drink brands average about 250mg of sodium and 32g of sugar per serving. They were formulated for older athletes like college football players practicing in the scorching sun. Your future World Cup soccer player or Olympic gymnast may not need those levels of sodium and carbohydrates just yet. If that sounds right to you, Jele hydration tablets may be the perfect hydration solution for them.

Recommended Daily Allowances (RDAs) and Tolerable Upper Intake Levels (ULs)

AgeRDAsULs
MaleFemaleMaleFemale
4-8 years1,000mg1,000mg2,500mg2,500mg
9-13 years1,300mg1,300mg3,000mg3,000mg
14-18 years1,300mg1,300mg3,000mg3,000mg
19-50 years1,000mg1,000mg2,500mg2,500mg