7. Greatist

Feel-good reading on health, fitness, and happiness

Greatist blog

Greatist blog     Photo: Courtesy of Greatist

Good for: G-rated health and fitness tips and news.

Written by: Derek Flanzraich, a Harvard grad with a passion for fitness and digital media, and a team of young writers.

Founded in March 2011, Greatist is a relative newcomer to the health and fitness blog scene. Updated multiple times a day with posts on fitness, health, and happiness, the site can be a time-suck. The simple design and elementary-school-like graphics make it look like you shouldn’t be browsing if you’re a male or over 13, but the posts are often teasingly titled as must-answer questions: Do My Muscles Need 2 Days to Recover? (It depends.) Does Chewing Gum Reduce Anxiety? (It does!) Plus, if you want to read more, key facts are footnoted with sources, which makes further digging easy.

Sample post: On what you do and don't need to consume post exercise. 

Physical function may hang in the balance if electrolyte levels remain low after a workout. Resulting symptoms can include muscle fatigue, dizziness, and nausea. But the right food or sports drink can get those electrolytes back in the body, no sweat. Yet when and how much to eat or drink depends on factors like exercise intensity, weather, and individual differences in sweating [1] [2].

The Threat of Sweat — Why It Matters
Dig up that high school chemistry book for an electrolyte refresher course. Electrolytes are minerals that break into small, electrically-charged particles called ions when they dissolve in water. Found in blood and cells, electrolytes are essential to physical activity because they regulate bodily fluids. Sodium and chloride, which maintain normal blood pressure and support muscle and nerve function, may be the most well known of the bunch. But the supporting cast includes calcium, which aids muscle contraction; magnesium, which aids healthy cell function; and potassium and phosphate, which help to regulate energy and pH balance.

During exercise, the body’s electrolyte balance can begin to shift. Finding a stick of deodorant may not be the only post-workout problem— as the body loses electrolytes through sweat, the imbalance can result in symptoms like muscle cramps, fatigue, nausea, and mental confusion. And if the electrolyte supply stays low, muscles may continue to feel weak during the next workout session [3]. Long-term risks include kidney failure, seizures, and disturbances in heart rhythm— a high price to pay for skipping a few sips...

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