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Sodium ingestion and hyponatraemia: sports drinks do not prevent a fall in serum sodium concentration during exercise
  1. J Dugas
  1. University of Cape Town, PO Box 115, Newlands, Cape Town 7725, South Africa;

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    In a well controlled and designed study, Baker et al1 clearly showed the effects of ingesting large volumes of water or a carbohydrate/electrolyte sports drink (CES) on serum Na+ concentration ([Na+]) during exercise in older, active adults (54–70 years). The data show that ingesting any hypotonic fluid, be it water or a Na+-containing sports drink (about 18 mmol/l), in volumes that are similar to or more than weight losses produces a fall in [Na+]—a finding that mirrors the study of Twerenbold et al published in this journal.2 Readers should know that any fluid of concentration less than 150 mmol/l is considered to be hypotonic to the plasma.

    In the study of Baker et al,1 the ingestion of a CES produced a lower …

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    • Competing interests: none declared