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Rapid Rehydration 30CT
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OSMOLALITY 101

Isotonic solutions = optimal rehydration

RULE OF THUMB

Maximum absorption in the bloodstream happens when a solution is equal to the osmolality that naturally occurs in your body. That’s where Lightspeed comes in.

What is osmolality? 

Osmolality refers to the density of osmotically active particles (such as sodium, other electrolytes, carbs, or flavoring) in your bloodstream’s plasma. The higher the density measured, the higher the osmolality. Osmolality is also an indicator of your water-electrolytes balance, and is critical in determining the best methods of rehydration.

ISOTONIC osmolality

Not all “hydration” solutions hydrate you the same.

While many “hydration” products such as sports drinks and electrolyte powders claim rapid and effective rehydration, NASA's rehydration studies found that the most effective method of rehydration is by consuming an isotonic solution. Isotonic solutions contain an osmolality that is equal to your bloodstream’s osmolality (between 275-295 Omol/L). Your body can only absorb liquids within this range. Anything outside of this range, and your body must compensate to absorb it. High osmolality (hypertonic) results in your body diluting water from your blood in order to absorb it. Low osmolality (hypotonic) results in your body pulling electrolytes from your muscles in order to absorb it. By hydrating yourself using an isotonic solution, your body can absorb the liquid at a maximum rate, allowing for optimal rehydration.

< 275 Omol/L

Hypotonic Solution

What is it?
Too little osmolality (e.g. water) is called “hypotonic,” meaning the solution is too diluted for the bloodstream to absorb it, resulting in a lack of electrolytes. This manifests itself often as either cramps, or not absorbing much of the water consumed.

How it works
Because hypotonic solutions don’t give you enough electrolytes, your body must compensate to increase the solution’s osmolality. This is resolved by pulling electrolytes from your tissues to increase the osmolality of the liquid in your stomach before it can be absorbed. Once the osmolality matches, your stomach can effectively move that solution through the bloodstream, and into the tissues where it’s distributed in your muscles, skin, brain, and other organs.

Why it's bad
Hypotonic solutions force your body to work overtime, compensating for the lack of electrolytes. Extra steps are necessary, leading to slower and less efficient hydration, as well as potential cramping from the electrolytes that are being pulled from your muscles.

275 – 295 Omol/L

Isotonic Solution

What is it?
Optimal hydration happens when a solution is isotonic, or equal to the osmolality that naturally occurs in your body (275-295 Omol/L).

How it works
Our isotonic solution, based off of NASA’s rehydration research and formula, is precisely manufactured to match your blood’s serum osmolality so that it can be rapidly absorbed without modification in your stomach.  The solution is directly absorbed by the bloodstream, then distributed to your tissues and the rest of your body.

Why it's good
Isotonic solutions do not require any modification in your body before being absorbed into the bloodstream, because they have the proper ratio of water to electrolytes. It's the fastest and most effective method of rehydration.

> 295 Omol/L

Hypertonic Solution

What is it?
Too much osmolality (e.g. sports drinks, sodas, seawater) is called “hypertonic”, meaning, the solution has too many particles (carbs, flavoring, electrolytes, etc.,) and not enough water. In the case of sports drinks, this can lead to further dehydration before rehydration can occur.

How it works
When a hypertonic solution enters your stomach, it cannot be absorbed directly into your bloodstream because it does not match your bloodstream’s osmolality. In order for it to be absorbed, your body triggers a response to take water out of your tissues into your bloodstream, then into the stomach. From there, the osmolality is a match. Your stomach can safely move that solution through the bloodstream, and into the tissues where it’s distributed in your muscles, skin, brain, and other organs.

Why it's bad
Hypertonic solutions force your body to compensate for the lack of water, trying to dilute the solution before being properly absorbed by the bloodstream. This leads to slower and less efficient hydration, as well as leading to further dehydration before rehydration occurs.

Shop our isotonic solution

ASTRONAUT APPROVED

Patented by NASA researchers.

For astronauts to stay well hydrated and at maximum performance during their missions, NASA knew that they must take in both water and electrolytes—or sodium. Both the quality and quantity of electrolytes critically impact osmolality,  affecting how water is absorbed and distributed within the body.

NASA’s patent on its isotonic solution is revolutionary. Studies conducted at the NASA’s Ames Research Center show that the NASA formula was superior to other rehydration beverages in restoring blood plasma volume in dehydrated individuals and maintaining blood plasma volume during exercise. Their studies also demonstrated that use of their isotonic solution improved regulation of core body temperature during exertion and increased exercise endurance.

Debunking the glucose myth

Day-long hydration.

For astronauts to stay well hydrated and at maximum performance during their missions, NASA knew that they must take in both water and electrolytes—or sodium.  Both the quality and quantity of electrolytes critically impact osmolality,  affecting how water is absorbed and distributed within the body.

NASA’s patent on its isotonic solution is revolutionary. Studies conducted at the NASA’s Ames Research Center show that the NASA formula was superior to other rehydration beverages in restoring blood plasma volume in dehydrated individuals and maintaining blood plasma volume during exercise. Their studies also demonstrated that use of their isotonic solution improved regulation of core body temperature during exertion and increased exercise endurance.

NASA's Key Findings

During high-intensity exercise for 30 minutes, the treatment without sugar increased endurance by over 20% when compared with water or carb-containing beverages.

Maintained plasma volume
More effective hydration
Maintained osmotic benefit
Study: Drink Composition and Cycle-Ergometer Endurance in Men: Carbohydrate, Na+, Osmolality