August 17, 2022
Just sharing a bit of information on the different kinds of rehydration!
HYPERTONIC VS. ISOTONIC VS. HYPOTONIC
- Hypertonic means it has a higher concentration of solutes than another solution. For
example, hypertonic drinks contain a higher concentration of salt and sugar than blood, making them a
good way to supplement your daily carbohydrate intake or top up glycogen stores.
- Best for: Large doses of carbohydrate (energy).
- When to use: As a recovery drink after intense or sustained exercise, for extra carbohydrates in the
lead up to a race.
- Hypertonic drinks can cause dehydration as the body has to move water from the
bloodstream into the intestine to dilute the fluids before it can absorb them. This can make you feel
thirsty and sometimes nauseous.
- Isotonic means it has the same concentration of solutes than another solution. For example,
isotonic drinks have a similar water, salt and carbohydrate concentration (6-8%) to blood. They typically
provide more energy and electrolytes than a hypotonic drink but take longer to enter the bloodstream.
- Best for: Carbohydrate release (quick energy, slowly rehydrate)
- When to use: Shorter duration or high-intensity workouts; when you want carbohydrate overhydration
during endurance exercise.
- Many commercial sports drinks on the market are isotonic, but a quick look at the ingredients often
reveals high levels of sugars, sweeteners and additives, which can cause stomach cramps and
- Example: Recover 180
- Hypotonic means it has a lower concentration of solutes than another solution. For example,
hypotonic drinks have a lower concentration of carbohydrates (<5%) and salt than blood. This means
they are absorbed into the bloodstream at a faster rate for quick hydration and electrolyte release.
- Best for: Rapid rehydration (hangover cure)
- When to use: Pre-hydration, on shorter workouts, on long rides, in hot weather; when you need a
drink to rehydrate quickly and effectively.
- Hypotonic drinks focus on rehydration and therefore do not provide maximum
- Example: Electrolit
- Information gathered from Veloforte.com/blog Look here for additional information