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DIY Electrolyte Drink :: Natural rehydration for colds, flu, food poisoning, & physical exertion

December 28, 2014

DIY Electrolyte Drink :: Natural rehydration for colds, flu, food poisoning, & physical exertion
Every winter it is bound to happen. Those sad little glassy eyes wake up and pout “momma…I don’t feel good”.

We certainly don’t live in a bubble, and as diligent as I work at keeping the girls’ immune systems built up to fight the bugs efficiently, once or twice a winter the immune system has to clean house and we have a bug sweep through. (I love THIS post about why this is a good thing!)

I am a big believer in listening to our kids when they are sick – if they don’t feel like eating that is fine by me. Let their bodies use energy to fight the infection instead of digesting food! But they do need to stay hydrated so their organs and immune system can do their job.

DIY Electrolyte Drink :: Natural rehydration for colds, flu, food poisoning, & physical exertion
While mineral rich bone broth is always my first drink offer, even my girls who like bone broth won’t likely sip on it all day. A few years back when my first daughter got her first cold I did a quick freak out at the ingredient list in the Pedialyte isle and decided I would just make my own.

DIY Electrolyte Drink :: Natural rehydration for colds, flu, food poisoning, & physical exertion
A mixture of cleansing lemon and energy giving raw honey was welcomed by my little one at the time. And the sea salt packed a mineral punch that kept her electrolytes in balance while she fought off her first cold.

DIY Electrolyte Drink :: Natural rehydration for colds, flu, food poisoning, & physical exertion
In the last 2 years I have nailed down the ingredient amounts I like to use – AND made it an efficient and quick process to make. This momma of 3 doesn’t have much time for playing around with mixing, measuring, and heating. This recipe is literally dump the ingredients in a pint mason jar and give it a shake. Done.

DIY Electrolyte Drink :: Natural rehydration for colds, flu, food poisoning, & physical exertion
I actually had this post planned for about mid to late January, but one of the girls ended up with food poisoning this weekend, and since I had it made up,it seemed like a good time to get it out! Please note this drink is not suitable for babies under the age of 1 considering the raw honey and acidity of the lemons. Babies under 1 should be nursing as much as possible during illness, and if baby is not nursing you can use coconut water to hydrate.

Product links in this section are affiliate links. It does not cost you anything and helps maintain the free information on this site, as well as answer the questions of “what brand do you use!” Please know I would never personally recommend any product I wouldn’t use on my own family.

4.9 from 8 reviews
DIY Electrolyte Drink :: Natural rehydration for colds, flu, food poisoning, & physical exertion
Author: 
 
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. Everything into a jar with a lid and shake well to combine. This recipe fits perfect in a pint mason jar.
  2. Store in the fridge up to a week.

Tips:

  • This recipe makes a pint mason jar perfectly. My girls are younger and typically won’t drink more than this amount in one day while they are ill. It is a nice amount to make for them to sip on in small amounts during the day. If you have older kids, or will be using it for yourself while ill you can double, triple, or more into a pitcher. When I make it for myself I double it into a quart mason jar.
  • Make the mixture into popsicles! Perfect for scratchy throats too! (And might I add teething toddlers?!)
  • Since most of the immune system resides in the gut, I also like to add probiotics to the jar if I haven’t been able to get them in any other way during the day.
  • I have one of these super simple lemon juicersit’s quick enough for busy momma!
  • These elderberry popsicles are another great idea to have on hand during illness.
  • For more info on managing flu symptoms see THIS POST.

This post was shared at Fat Tuesday, Real Food Wednesday, and Allergy Free Wednesday!

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65 Comments

  • Reply Sandrine Love December 28, 2014 at 7:29 pm

    I am feeling thirsty as I read this! I wonder about lemon and the enamel on our teeth?!

    • Reply Renee Kohley December 28, 2014 at 7:35 pm

      Hi Sandrine! I drink lemon water most days of the week and have never had a problem with enamel – although I would imagine diet and/or genetics might play a role in that?

  • Reply Emily @ Recipes to Nourish December 30, 2014 at 2:05 pm

    I LOVE this recipe! So simple and easy to make too. I’ll be making this for my husband often after his training/vigorous work outs.

  • Reply Jennifer Margulis December 30, 2014 at 2:12 pm

    I shared this on my Facebook page and it got tons of eyeballs. THANK YOU for this. As I mentioned on FB, I think this is an excellent alternative to the “pediatrician-approved” sitting in plastic for months at a time drinks that are full of unpronounceable ingredients that I don’t think we should be giving to our kids, including petroleum-based food dyes.

    • Reply Renee Kohley December 30, 2014 at 2:25 pm

      Love that Jennifer – and yes so true. Thank you for sharing it!

  • Reply Jessica @ConveyAwareness December 30, 2014 at 2:22 pm

    I’ll be sharing your recipe with two of my friends that are undergoing chemo. Pinned. =)

    • Reply Renee Kohley December 30, 2014 at 2:24 pm

      Oh yes – perfect – great idea! Hope they feel well soon.

  • Reply Jessica December 30, 2014 at 3:49 pm

    I love this alternative to the junk filled stuff at the store. You are such a good mama.

  • Reply Jenne Kopalek December 30, 2014 at 4:35 pm

    Wow, I know a few people sick right now and I am definitely going to pass this on. Thank you!

    • Reply Renee Kohley December 30, 2014 at 5:37 pm

      Perfect Jenne – thanks! Hope they feel better soon!

  • Reply Megan Stevens December 30, 2014 at 4:57 pm

    Your recipe looks like the perfect go-to! Pinning, thanks!! 🙂

  • Reply Tina @ OhSnapLetsEat.com December 30, 2014 at 5:01 pm

    A while back I was totally looking for a recipe exactly like this. I was very dehydrated and didn’t want to drink a bunch of Gatorade – this is great thanks!

    • Reply Renee Kohley December 30, 2014 at 5:38 pm

      Awesome Tina – thanks for stopping by!

  • Reply Chloe @ How We Flourish December 31, 2014 at 2:40 pm

    I love how simple this is! Pinning it, and will be keeping it in mind.

  • Reply Sirena January 3, 2015 at 4:15 pm

    While the electrolytes in this are awesome for those that are sick, etc. it would not be appropriate for chemo patients because honey is NOT pasteurized. Chemo patients immune systems are typically in bad shape during chemotherapy and giving them honey may effect their ability to recover. Possibly this recipe with an alternative sweetener would be more appropriate.

    • Reply Renee Kohley January 3, 2015 at 5:19 pm

      Hi Sirena! Thank you for the information! I didn’t make recommendations for chemo patients in this particular post as that is not my specialty. If raw honey is a concern you can use a splash of organic apple juice, pure maple syrup (which has minerals too), or splash of organic fresh squeezed orange juice. Hope that helps!

  • Reply Sunday Snippets January 3, 2015 at 7:01 pm

    […] DIY Electrolyte Drink :: Natural rehydration for colds, flu, food poisoning, & physical exertion…from Raising Generation Nourished. This is a good recipe to have on hand. […]

  • Reply Lori Hanken January 3, 2015 at 7:49 pm

    This looks great! I hate all the Gatorade that kids drink for sporting events and to replenish fluids & electrolytes.

    Is the lemon crucial to the electrolytes or could you add/substitute lemon essential oils?

    I love the detoxifying nature of the lemon essential oils.

    • Reply Renee Kohley January 3, 2015 at 9:52 pm

      Hi Lori! If you feel comfortable using the lemon EO in your drink you may do that 🙂 I don’t advocate for ingesting essential oils at this time so I would still recommend the lemon. The I like getting the juice squeezed right from the lemon for its detoxing attributes and vitamin C. I hope that helps!

  • Reply Angel January 4, 2015 at 12:25 am

    Have you used orange in place of lemon? I’m sure it would taste fine but only curious.

    • Reply Renee Kohley January 4, 2015 at 12:18 pm

      Hi Angel! Fresh squeezed orange would work fine too if that is what you have. Lemons do have a detoxing attribute along with the vitamin C which is why I prefer the lemon, but if your little one prefers the orange and will drink it better that way do that. Hope that helps!

  • Reply Chris Tickle January 4, 2015 at 9:45 am

    Great drink and taste, really works!

    • Reply Renee Kohley January 4, 2015 at 12:17 pm

      Glad it worked for you Chris! Thanks for stopping by for the feedback!

  • Reply Robin January 4, 2015 at 7:17 pm

    I just made this using Stevia in place of honey (that’s what I had on hand). I exercise really hard for 2-3 hours at a time and lose a lot of fluid sweating. I can get bad cramps in all muscle groups in my legs during the night. Although I drink lots of lemon water I have never put salt in it. I hope this works for me! I also heated it up like a tea and it is great tasting on this cold day!

  • Reply lynn baker January 5, 2015 at 3:38 pm

    Please tell parents not to give children under 12months honey!!!! That’s a big NO NO!!

    • Reply Renee Kohley January 5, 2015 at 4:11 pm

      Hi Lynn 🙂 I never said in this post that this drink was appropriate for babies under 1. I will be more specific and edit that right now – babies under one ought be either nursing or if they cannot they can drink coconut water with a pinch of sea salt.

  • Reply Rachel January 5, 2015 at 4:02 pm

    This sounds good. I’m prepping stuff for labor next month, do you think this would make a good labor drink to help replenish fluids? I remember with my last, I was so thirsty by the end of of the labor (despite my hubby being great about refilling my thermos with water) that the watermelon he had packed for the hospital was the most welcome treat. Little disappointed I don’t get watermelon this time around–winter babies! 😉

    • Reply Renee Kohley January 5, 2015 at 4:14 pm

      Hi Rachel! Congratulations on your upcoming arrival! Yes this would be a fantastic drink to keep on hand for labor!

  • Reply Lorna Bramley January 5, 2015 at 7:05 pm

    would Manuka honey be ok to use?

  • Reply Cindy (Vegetarian Mamma) January 8, 2015 at 8:17 pm

    I need to try to make this! Would love to have you share it at Gluten Free Fridays link up! Its live now! Cindy 🙂

  • Reply Carol McCollum January 10, 2015 at 3:42 pm

    Thank you so much for this!! I had made something similar to this a few months ago & had sweetened it with a bit of pure maple syrup. I also added about a Tbsp of ACV (Bragg’s Apple Cider Vinegar). It was very refreshing. Don’t know why I forgot about it— other than the fact that this doozy of a cold I’ve had for 5days (1st in over 2yrs) has muddled my brain!! I actually ended up drinking Gatorade…. blechhhh. OK… thanks for the reminder & recipe for this electrolyte drink!! Question– what do you think of the addition of the ACV??

    • Reply Renee Kohley January 10, 2015 at 4:03 pm

      Hi Carol! The ACV is a good addition if you can tolerate it! Some don’t tolerate ferments while ill – especially children, so this is the bland of the bland, and you can add what works for you! I hope you feel better soon 🙂

  • Reply Tessa@TessaDomesticDiva January 11, 2015 at 10:36 pm

    Love this! Thaks for sharing it with us on Allergy Free Wednesday, I am featuring your recipe this week!

  • Reply Lisa January 16, 2015 at 6:05 am

    I can catch a cold really fast, sometimes there are months when I have a stuffy nose what results into a headache or a sore throat. If I had some lemons I would make it immediately.

  • Reply Peggy January 17, 2015 at 11:52 am

    We’ve had a morning of sickness in our house and no way to get to the store for pedialyte. Then I remembered seeing this on Allergy Free Wednesday. I just made it and tried it and 7 year old drank it right up! Thanks for helping out in a bind. And so much better than store bought!

    • Reply Renee Kohley January 17, 2015 at 7:33 pm

      Hi Peggy! Thank you so much for coming back to let me know! That makes my day to hear! Hope you all are on the mend today!

  • Reply Naturally Healing Ear Infections In Kids - Raising Generation Nourished January 26, 2015 at 6:21 am

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  • Reply Julia February 27, 2015 at 8:56 am

    Living so far from any decent place to buy produce in the winter, we don’t have any lemons on hand. Is the lemon juice from concentrate in a bottle effective at all for this type of use?

    • Reply Renee Kohley February 28, 2015 at 1:53 pm

      I think if I were in that situation Julia I might just add a splash of 100% juice like apple juice. The lemon juice from concentrate really doesn’t have the same nutritional value from what I understand after it goes through the process to be concentrated. Does that make sense?

  • Reply Amanda March 19, 2015 at 12:07 am

    I regularly deal with dehydration/electrolyte imbalance due to gastro issues, and for the past 24 hours I’ve had miserable time with food poisoning as well. A quick search for “electrolyte re-hydration drink” brought Me to this page, and I said “that sounds like a great recipe!”.
    It’s similar to one I’ve made for myself before. I used Orange Juice concentrate – homestyle with orange bits still in it, mixed with gatorade, young coconut water, powerade, or the “revive” type of Vitamin water. Then I dumped in a small amount of sea salt and some cane sugar then shook it like crazy.
    The only additions that could have improved this?
    Honey, banana puree + water, and some cleansing lemon.
    That said, I think the combination of our formulas would be far more replenishing than anything commonly available in the market or at a medical center. 🙂

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  • Reply Stitch January 5, 2016 at 5:23 am

    Would taking this during excercise not upset your tummy with the vitamin c effect in lemon. I drink lemon water in the morning first thing & it can bring on a toilet visit.

    • Reply Renee Kohley January 6, 2016 at 2:09 pm

      Hi Stitch! I’m not sure – of course everyone is different so if it seems to affect you that way it might 🙂

  • Reply Tarah @ What I Gather January 5, 2016 at 1:28 pm

    We made a drink almost just like this when I was in labor. Turned out I wanted nothing to do with it while in labor, but we’ve also used it for long races and hard workouts. This looks yummy! Much better than Gatorade. 🙂

    • Reply Renee Kohley January 6, 2016 at 2:10 pm

      Yes it is a fantastic “labor-aide!” Tarah!

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  • Reply Riann June 23, 2016 at 3:24 pm

    My little 3 year old had a tummy bug last week and she loved this. Thank you!! She kept asking for her special lemonade. 🙂

    • Reply Renee Kohley June 24, 2016 at 1:42 pm

      So precious! Thank you for coming back to let me know Riann!

  • Reply Michael Calamia September 5, 2016 at 1:18 pm

    My mother is sick in bed with a migraine, will this recipe help her ailment?

    • Reply Renee Kohley September 5, 2016 at 7:24 pm

      It would be a great fluid to try with her for sure!

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