The Science Behind The Performance

78 Electrolytes

There are multiple approaches to electrolyte supplementation in sport, but these primarily focus on a few electrolytes such as sodium (Na), potassium (K), calcium (Ca) and magnesium (Mg), with some also containing vitamins, carbohydrates and artificial sweeteners.

Complete Hydration

You don’t perceive thirst until dehydration has resulted in water losses of 2% body weight, which equates to a 10% loss in performance. Ensuring an athlete is fully hydrated before training and competing is crucial for maximising performance.

The Cell

Complete hydration is the key to enable the cells to function properly. The cells require the correct composition of all minerals and trace elements to hold on to intracellular water and achieve cellular hydration.


Hydration is one of the most important aspects for maximising performance, supporting all other factors of speed, strength, stamina, concentration, immunity and recovery. Minerals and trace elements are essential for them all.

Electrolyte supplements that contain only 5 or 6 electrolytes fail to allow for the importance of the rest of the electrolytes required for effective and efficient hydration. Although macro-minerals such as magnesium (Mg), calcium (Ca), chlorine (Cl) and sodium (Na) are considered to be of primary importance, trace elements are just as necessary to enable the function of the macrominerals whilst having their own functions. The interrelation between all the minerals and trace elements explains why supplementing with only a few electrolytes unbalances the homeostasis and compromises the body’s ability to utilise the rest of the electrolytes to maximum advantage for hydration.


Start Strong
Alongside optimising performance, hydration prior to exercise is important to ensure correct muscle functionality and efficiency. Electrolyte content and balance needs to be at its peak prior to starting to prepare for the physiological effects that occur during exercise. Once you start exercising and intensity progresses, rehydration becomes more urgent. Water and electrolyte losses increasingly compromises performance and cell functions, which increases injuries. Regular water and electrolyte supplementation together during exercise is therefore essential.
Perfect Proportions
The distribution of the higher concentration electrolytes, such as sodium (Na+) and potassium (K+) are carefully controlled to maintain the electrical potential across the cell wall. Providing just these electrolytes in hydration products has minimal impact on enabling cells to hold on to water for hydration, it therefore comes down to the trace elements. Totum Sport contains the key electrolytes alongside vital trace elements, providing the full spectrum of electrolytes for complete hydration.
Delay the Switch
Athletes that can regulate and maintain blood glucose for longer will delay the switch to anaerobic metabolism and gain advantages in performance and quicker recovery. Electrolytes have important roles in metabolism as cofactors and catalysts, influencing the switch to less efficient pathways, which compromises performance and stamina. Totum Sport delays this switch, maximising stamina. Athletes who are training hard often find that the body conserves energy for training and the immune system suffers as a result. When the immune system is depressed, athletes are more prone to circulating infections. Totum Sport supports muscles, nerves and all cells throughout the body.
Unrivalled Recovery
Rehydration after exercise focuses on the recovery of the muscles and function of the nervous system. Muscles have three different metabolic pathways for generating energy, adenosine triphosphate (ATP). Each energy system impacts how well the muscles function and last. The first pathway is the phosphagen system, which is anaerobic, providing an immediate energy source. There are very limited stores of ATP and creatine phosphate in the muscles, which are used up in seconds. This pathway generates explosive power for short bursts of exercise, where recovery needs to be quick. Cellular hydration and replacing electrolytes can also enhance recovery time.
Compromise Nothing
The second pathway is aerobic glycolysis, requiring oxygen for metabolism. This pathway can be sustained to deliver moderately intense activity as long as the cells are supplied with glucose from glycogen stores in the muscles and liver, generating 38ATP. When red blood cells run low on glucose and compromise oxygen delivery, energy metabolism is forced to function as anaerobic glycolysis, generating only 2ATP per glucose molecule. This also produces lactic acid, predisposing muscles to cramp and injury.

Intense Exercise = Electrolyte Losses

Intense exercise results in the loss of water and electrolytes, from the cells as sweat, water vapour via breathing and via the kidneys into the bladder as urine. Inadequate water intake during prolonged training sessions can result in several physiological effects, including increased heart rate and raised core body temperature. An increase in core body temperature may be a factor in causing muscle fatigue and reducing nerve function. Drinking water might appear to be the only solution, but without the full cellular complement of minerals and trace elements, the cells and circulation struggle to hold on to water. Drinking just water predisposes the body to further dehydration and a higher risk of cramp, muscle injuries and electrolyte disorders.


Protein included with each meal provides amino acids for protein synthesis which contribute to muscle and connective tissue repair. During exercise muscles develop micro-tears, which stimulates the body to build bigger and stronger muscles in recovery.  Amino acids from protein sources help to rebuild muscle tissue. On a heavy training day it is beneficial to consume additional protein in your evening meal, as the body regenerates during sleep.  Minerals and amino acids are often absorbed in parallel, which is why taking one sachet of Totum Sport immediately post exercise enhances protein absorption.
Carbohydrates are used during exercise as glucose derived from glycogen, stored in the muscle and liver. High intensity training uses carbohydrates as they break down into energy more quickly. Consumption of carbohydrates during exercise can lead to digestive problems and cramping, Totum Sport prevents the risk of cramp, regulating blood sugar derived from existing good nutrition. The brain and red blood cells can only use blood glucose as an energy supply, so ensuring you have stabilised blood glucose is important for maintaining concentration, focus and oxygen delivery to the muscles. Electrolytes help with the absorption of carbohydrates, the electrolytes in Totum Sport help to regulate blood sugar levels, enhancing energy utlisation.  
Fat stores in the body are too slowly utilised to be a source of energy for explosive power, and are primarily used as an energy reserve in stamina sports. If you are doing a lower intensity training session, a high intake of carbohydrates is not essential as fat can be used as fuel.  Totum Sport contains chromium and zinc, which help your body generate energy from fat. Including fats in the diet aids with recovery and restoring energy levels. Omega 3 also has an anti-inflammatory effect on the body to help repair muscle damage.
Nutrients are absorbed at different levels in the gut. Minerals are the first line of absorption, so they are absorbed prior to vitamins. Taking Totum Sport enhances the absorption and utilisation of vitamins in the body so that they can carry out their functions.


When all minerals and trace elements play a part in all levels of hydration and metabolism it is not sufficient to only replace a few of them. Unlike hydration products based on only a few electrolytes that are mostly involved in hydration of the circulation only, Totum Sport supports all aspects of hydration in all compartments in the body which supports a higher level of metabolism, preserves blood glucose, delays the switch to anaerobic metabolism which reduces lactate production and helps minimise muscle fatigue and injury. This is only possible by the presence of all 78 elements in the right proportions and in bioavailable form.


Hydration Guide


Science Document