If you haven't been living under a rock, you've probably seen ads for the electrolyte drink LMNT (pronounced Element). I saw these ads as well and decided I needed to compare them to my current go-to electrolyte drink. This article is the 30-day hands-on review of LMNT.
If you don't feel like reading the whole article and diving into the science behind the ingredients, the TLDR summary is this:
LMNT is now my favorite electrolyte powder by far. I use it at least twice a day and have seen noticeable positive effects to my health, my workouts, my endurance, and my muscle cramps are entirely gone. My wife is hooked as well. Try it out to see for yourself! Get a free trial pack when using this link: https://elementallabs.refr.cc/riseandgrind
Now back to the review...
Why I selected LMNT
Electrolytes are not something I thought much of in the past. I've worked out consistently for the past decade+ and have always thought plain water was best. If I was really working hard, I'd mix in a Gatorade here and there.
Then I started reading more, listening to knowledgeable people on podcasts, and discovered the importance of electrolytes not only in workout performance but in recovery and everyday life.
One of the key things I learned is that your body NEEDS salt. If your childhood was anything like mine, you were always taught too much salt was bad. Turns out, that mostly false. Most adults lack salt in their diet and need more.
Becuase of this new knowledge, I started mixing pink Himalayan salt with a large glass of water and lemon every more to wake up instead of coffee or energy drinks. I grew to really like this and found it super refreshing.
Then I started running for the first time in my life. Mainly a two-mile loop around my neighborhood, but occasionally mixing in a 4 or 6 mile run. I needed something a little more than simple salt in my water.
So I moved up to my first electrolyte mix called "TailWinds". It's a powder of electrolytes mixed with simple carbohydrates for energy on long runs or endurance-type events. I loved this. I tried a few other products before this and they all upset my stomach. Tailwinds did not.
The problem was that I needed electrolytes every day, but I wasn't always running long distances every day, which required me to have a bunch of additional simple carbohydrates. So, I setout to find a drink containing ONLY the electrolytes needed without any other fillers or carbs.
I think my phone heard what I was thinking because this is when I stumbled across an ad for LMNT. I reached out to their team and they were kind enough to send me multiple sample packs to try out since I have a small audience here at riseandgrind.com.
With no strings attached or any promise of a review, I started testing out LMNT along with my wife. Within half a sample pack, we were hooked. Before we even finished half of one sample pack, I already went and purchase a back of 120 unflavored packs from their website (paid for out of my pocket). After that back of 120 packets arrived, my wife and I realised we also liked a lot of the flavor packets as well, so we purchased another 120 packets the same week with our top 4 favorite flavors: citrus salt, grapefruit salt, raspberry salt, and orange salt.
What is the LMNT Drink
LMNT is an electrolyte drink developed by Robb Wolf, Tyler Cartwright, and Luis Villaseñor. After becoming tired of only finding sugar-filled poorly formulated "electrolyte drinks", they decided the break it down to the main raw ingredients and stop there. No fillers, no sugars, just hydration. LMNT's goal is to restore health through hydration.
The dink contains essential electrolytes such as sodium, potassium, and magnesium, which are important for maintaining proper fluid balance, muscle function, and overall hydration. It is free from added sugars, artificial ingredients, and other common additives in many sports drinks.
The company has made quite the impact, and the product stuck a cord with consumers as the brand has been profitable since year one and has an annual run rate exceeding 50 million.
The 30-Day LMNT Challenge
Whenever I start taking a new supplement, I want to give it the best chance possible to either work or fail. My goal is to remove as many variables as possible and give it the best shot. For LMNT, I gave it a 30-day trial run to see how I felt taking it consistently.
In June, I completely quit drinking all caffeine and alcohol. I just drank plain water (sometimes with a little salt and lemon mixed in) for the month of June. Coming off this stretch of hydration with nothing else, I thought it was the perfect testing ground for adding in LMNT for 30 days straight to see how it compared to just water.
I added it into my normal schedule first thing in the morning and then typically a second time around noon. I either work out right after waking up or, three days a week, I head straight to Jiu-jitsu. So I down a 20 ounce glass of water with LMNT mixed in right before.
For this first drink, I almost always go with the unflavored packet. For the second afternoon drink, I typically add a flavored pack.
So that's how my 30-day challenge was set up. Now let's go over the results broken down into a few categories. Starting off with the most important question, does it work?
Does The LMNT Drink Work?
The short answer is yes; of course it works. I say this because although I love this product for a few reasons discussed below, at its core, the product is just sodium, potassium, and magnesium. The basic elements our bodies need to survive have been around forever and are nothing new.
It's well-researched and studied that electrolytes are vital for our health and well-being. Now while the ingredients themselves are nothing special, the quantity of those ingredients makes a difference, as we'll see in the section below on ingredients.
As for effects, I noticed two major effects. The first is hydration. I am unsure how to describe this other than a feeling of "absorbing the water". After drinking Element compared to plain water, I feel better. I feel like my body has absorbed more water and physically feels more hydrated.
Electrolytes do help your body absorbs and process water, so this added feeling of hydration compared to plain water is understandable. I really enjoyed drinking this before Jiu-Jitsu since I sweat so much. It's an extremely physically intense workout and given that it's early in the morning after getting dehydrated all night sleeping, I really felt like the added hydration improved my performnce, mental clarity, and recovery.
The second main benefit I experienced was the ability to drink more water effortlessly. I genuinely enjoyed the taste of the flavored packets (and even the unflavored one) compared to normal water, that I instinctively drank more of it. While used to fill up my 20 ounce water bottle, and it would take me a couple of hours to eventually finish, I noticed when I mixed in LMNT, I would finish it within 30 minutes every time.
How Does LMNT Taste?
I stated above that about 2 or 3 years ago, I was turned on to the idea that we needed more salt, not less salt, in our water to properly hydrate. This started me on mixing salt with lemon in my water most mornings on and off over the years. I became accustomed to salt in my water and grew to really like the flavor.
Given this, drinking LMNT made me feel right at home. Since sodium is a main ingredient, AKA salt, I was already accustomed to the flavor and really liked it. This may differ for others.
LMNT comes in two main varieties: Flavored and Unflavored. Let's first talk about the unflavored.
The unflavored version of LMNT has the best ingredients of any electrolyte drink I've tried to date. It is simply sodium, magnesium, and potassium. That's it! No fillers, no sugars, no preservatives, nothing else but simple electrolytes. Zero calories and pure hydration.
The unflavored version of LMNT is what first brought me to LMNT. I wanted the core electrolytes with nothing else, and to my surprise, that's more difficult to find than you'd think it would be.
Every single diet I'm aware of, even the most restrictive, like keto and carnivore, can have the unflavored version of LMNT. Given that electrolytes are so vital for proper hydration, this is great news for a lot of people that would otherwise likely go deficient in these ingredients.
If the unflavored version of LMNT brought me to the product, the flavored version made me stay. I typically hate flavored powder drinks because they often taste so distant from the flavor written on the box that it's tough to stomach (non-sugar-filled powders, I should clarify).
One of the only flavored drinks I've liked up until this point is the Early Bird Morning Cocktail (see review here). So to my surprise, I loved the flavors of LMNT.
When I first purchased the drink, I went full steam ahead on the unflavored variety and purchased 4 packs of 30 right of the batt. When the product arrived and came with sample packs of the flavored version, I immediately bought 120 more of the flavored packs.
One important distinction for some, depending on your diet, is that the flavored packs are not zero calorie/zero carb. The flavored packs all have 10 calories and contain 2 grams of carbs. This comes from the stevia leaf extract used to sweeten the flavors along with natural flavoring.
Again, this is still healthier than 99% of other hydration drinks out there, but it does have some carbs, which would likely make it not an option for anyone on a keto diet or similar.
I am not on a keto diet at the moment, so I have an unflavored pack with some lemon juice every morning and then a flavored pack later in the afternoon every day.
What are the Ingredients of LMNT?
I'm used to going into a lot of detail on the ingredients in these supplement review articles. This article will be a little different, considering LMNT only has three primary ingredients, and they are well-studied simple ingredients that the body requires to survive. No fancy nootropics or hybrid ingredients to dive into. Simple and straightforward. Let's go!
Magnesium - 60/mg
Magnesium, an essential mineral, plays a critical role in various important processes in our bodies. It's a key nutrient because our bodies can't make it on their own, so we need to get it from the foods we eat.
When it comes to drinks that help keep us hydrated, magnesium is a star ingredient. Picture magnesium as a conductor that helps maintain the right balance of fluids inside our cells and tissues. It collaborates with other electrolytes such as sodium and potassium to ensure our cells have the proper amount of water. This balance is super important for functions like nerve signals and muscle movements.
But that's not all – magnesium also gets involved in turning the food we eat into the energy our bodies use. This is particularly important when we're active and playing sports. When we exercise, we sweat and lose not just water, but also electrolytes like magnesium. If we don't have enough magnesium, our muscles might cramp up, and we can feel really tired.
So, when we see magnesium listed in drinks designed to keep us hydrated, it's because these drinks want to make sure we're getting enough of this important mineral. Magnesium's like a behind-the-scenes hero that helps our bodies function well, especially when we're on the move.
Sodium - 1,000/mg
Sodium is a special element that plays a big role in our bodies. You might have heard of it as salt. It's not just the thing that makes our food taste better; it's also essential for our health. Sodium helps control the balance of fluids inside and outside our body cells. This balance is really important for our cells to work the right way and for our nerves and muscles to send messages correctly.
Now, when we talk about hydration drinks, sodium takes center stage. Imagine sodium as a team captain that manages how much water is in our body cells. It teams up with other members like potassium and chloride to make sure the right amount of water stays where it's needed. This is crucial because when we're active or it's hot outside, we sweat and lose both water and sodium. If we don't have enough sodium, our muscles might cramp, and we can feel tired or dizzy.
You might have been told growing up, or even recently, that too much sodium is bad for you. You hear that we need to limit our sodium and even buy sodium-reduced foods. New research is proving that to be false. With proper hydration levels, our bodies need MORE sodium, not less.
While the FDA has a daily recommended sodium intake of 2 grams, our bodies actually do best between 4-6 grams of sodium a day. If you have intense workouts and/or sweat a lot, this number goes up even higher.
Hydration drinks have sodium in them for a good reason. They're designed to help us stay hydrated, especially when we're busy playing sports or when it's warm out. The sodium in these drinks helps replace what we lose when we sweat, making sure we stay balanced and feel our best.
Potassium - 200/mg
Let's talk about potassium, a cool element that does some important jobs in our bodies. Think of it as a helpful teammate that keeps things running smoothly. It helps our muscles move and our nerves talk to each other. We can find potassium in foods like bananas, oranges, and potatoes. Our bodies can't make potassium, so we need to make sure we eat foods that have it.
Now, when it comes to drinks that keep us hydrated, potassium is like the secret ingredient. It's like the coach of the hydration team. Potassium works together with other team members, like sodium, to make sure our cells have the right amount of water. This is super important because when we play sports or it's hot, we sweat and lose water and potassium. If we don't have enough potassium, our muscles might not work well, and we can feel weak.
For most of us, getting around 2,500 to 3,000 milligrams of potassium each day is a good goal. But the amount we need can change depending on our age, size, and how active we are. Hydration drinks like LMNT have potassium in them to help us stay balanced and strong, especially when we're moving a lot or sweating a lot.
Overall Thoughts on Ingredients and Dosages
I've said this a few times now, but what I love most about LMNT is the simplicity of the ingredients and the science behind them. If you check out the LMNT website, you'll see in the top bar "science".
In this tab they have a list of all the research the formulation is based on. Why they chose the ingredients and amount of each ingredient along with detailed explanations from actual scientists and nutritionalists.
They link to peer-reviewed research and actually give you detailed explanations of their formula which is more than most companies do. Most companies would actually avoid this all together because the science behind high-sugar, high-filler hydration is not very convincing.
At the dosage of all three main ingredients, I believe from my own research and reviewing the research put out by LMNT, that it is the ideal dosage for proper hydration without going overboard. It doesn't cut corners and skimp, but it doesn't load your body up unnecessarily.
In the morning, it gives your body that initial kick needed to get hydrated after becoming dehydrated through the night. I've personally found this dehydration is what actually leads most people to consume coffee or energy drinks early in the morning.
It's not because you actually "need" caffeine to get energy, what your body actually needs is true hydration but it has become accustomed to getting hydration through coffee or energy drinks so that's what you crave. If you replace that morning coffee or energy drink with a 24-ounce glass of water with LMNT, I can almost promise you that "need" for another caffeine drink goes away.
If you were like me and had a high dosage of caffeine daily for years, it will probably take 3-5 days of "caffeine" headaches before you can feel normal again, but the short-term pain is worth it.
For your long-term health and wellness, try drinking 24 ounces of LMNT fist thing in the morning for 14 days instead of coffee or energy drinks and see how much better you feel being truly hydrated.
How much does LMNT Cost?
LMNT comes packaged in individual packets for each serving and comes in 30 servings a box (plus a large free sample pack if you purchase using this link). This comes out to $1.50/serving. If you buy their 4-pack combo where you can mix and match any flavors, it lowers the price to $1.12/serving.
Cost is always a consideration. With LMNT the cost really comes down to convenience and flavor. You can buy the main three ingredients in raw form and mix them yourself at home and save money. If you don't have enough money to afford LMNT, I recommend you do this just to remain properly hydrated.
If you do have the money, LMNT is the way to go. It's conveniently packaged making it each to throw in a bag and take with you, no need to mess with scooping powder from a container. I've even thrown a handful of packs in my backpack while traveling internationally and haven't had an issue (which can't be said for most powders in containers). In addition, you get the option of having great tasting flavors which is much more difficult and time-consuming to try and create and mix yourself at home.
For me, LMNT helps me save money. Instead of spending $2.50-$4/day on energy drinks or coffee, I have completely stopped using those and simply use LMNT instead. The $1.12/day it costs me is completely worth it for the health benefits I experience and how I feel vs how I felt drinking 1-2 energy drinks a day.
Does LMNT help you wake up?
Yes, LMNT can absolutely help you wake up easier and get out of the morning groggy phase faster. When we wake up and feel groggy with brain fog, what we are actually experiencing is not a lack of energy, but actually a lack of hydration. Our bodies need to be properly hydrated to achieve peak brain and muscle function.
If you want to feel awake fast each morning and have the energy needed to conquer the day, down 24 ounces of water with LMNT and watch how quickly you go from brain fog to complete clarity.
Where to buy LMNT
You can buy LMNT using this link here from their main website to get a free sample pack to try for yourself.
LMNT Discount Code
While LMNT does not have discount codes, they do offer free sample packs for anyone using the Rise And Grind link. Use this link and get a sample pack of various flavors sent to your home for free.
I do not make money off of this link. This is not an affiliate link. I simply get a pack of LMNT if you get a pack of LMNT as compensation to help me feed my LMNT addiction ;) So thank you!
Questions and Answers
Here is a quick list of the most common questions people have about the LMNT Drink and the answers I have found.
Why is it called LMNT?
LMNT is pronounced like "Element" and refers to the foundational elements that make up the formulation: Sodium, Potassium, and Magnesium.
Is it okay to drink LMNT every day?
Yes, there is no harm in drinking LMNT daily. The drink is made up of ingredients our body needs to live and cannot make on our own. Not only is it okay to drink every day, it is a healthy habit to consume daily or something with similar ingredients and dosages.
When should you drink LMNT?
This is purely personal preference and will change from person to person, but here is how I use LMNT. I take one serving as soon as I wake up mixed in about 20-24 ounces of cold water.
I do this to rehydrate myself from sleeping all night and get my brain and muscles functioning properly. I will either work out right after drinking it or head to Jiu-Jitsu.
Later on in the day, around 1-2 pm, I typically take another packet with 20-24 ounces of water again.
How many packets can I drink in a day?
The research shows the average person needs between 4-6 grams of sodium each day to fully hydrate. Depending on your diet and how much water you are consuming, it is perfectly safe to have multiple packets a day if desired.
Since each packet contains 1 gram of sodium, you should consider how much sodium you are eating and drinking from other sources throughout the day to land at the proper amount. In addition, if you participate in extreme physical workouts or sweat a lot, your need for sodium and the other ingredients will rise and you can consume more.
I stick to 2 packets a day. I have never exceeded that personally.
Does LMNT make you retain water?
The answer to this is, it depends. In general, water retention from sodium happens not from having too much sodium, but from drinking too little water. Your body uses sodium to retain water for survival if you are not consuming enough water. If you properly hydrate, sodium is diluted in the body and limits the amount of water your body retains.
In addition, potassium (one of the ingredients in LMNT) plays a big role is helping your body manage sodium levels. So the answer is that if you are properly hydrated and consuming the appropriate amount of sodium, then no, LMNT will not make you retain more water.
Is LMNT good for hangovers?
Yes, LMNT (or property hydration in general) is good at helping to alleviate the symptoms of a hangover. A hangover is the result of a combination of factors, including alcohol's effects on the body, dehydration, and the production of toxic byproducts as alcohol is metabolized. Here's how hydration helps with a hangover:
- Dehydration: Alcohol is a diuretic, meaning it increases urine production. This can lead to excessive fluid loss and dehydration, which contributes to many hangover symptoms such as headache, fatigue, and dizziness. Drinking water helps replenish the lost fluids and restores your body's hydration levels.
- Electrolyte Balance: Alcohol consumption can also lead to the loss of essential electrolytes like sodium, potassium, and magnesium, which are important for maintaining proper fluid balance (the main ingredients of LMNT) and cellular function. Rehydrating with drinks like LMNT helps restore these minerals and aids in recovering from the imbalances caused by alcohol.
- Flush Out Toxins: Alcohol is metabolized in the liver, and the byproducts of this process can be toxic. Hydrating helps your body flush out these toxins more efficiently through urine, reducing the overall burden on your liver and potentially alleviating some hangover symptoms.
- Headache Relief: Dehydration is often associated with headaches and migraines. Rehydrating can help relieve the headache component of a hangover and reduce discomfort.
- Improved Blood Circulation: Proper hydration supports better blood circulation, which can aid in delivering oxygen and nutrients to cells and tissues. This can help alleviate feelings of fatigue and promote overall recovery.
- Gastrointestinal Relief: Alcohol can irritate the stomach lining and lead to digestive discomfort. Hydration can help soothe the digestive tract and alleviate some of the associated symptoms, such as nausea and vomiting.
It's important to note that while hydration is beneficial for managing hangover symptoms, it's not a complete solution. Rest, proper nutrition, and time are also essential factors in recovering from a hangover.
Can children drink LMNT?
Children need all the main ingredients of LMNT to survive just as adults do but at lower quantities due to their smaller bodies. I am not a medical expert and the amounts recommended for children vary, but I will give half a serving of LMNT to my son before and after very physically demanding exercises like soccer games or Jiu-jitsu practice, where he sweats a lot. He loves the taste, and it makes him feel better than drinking just water.