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Nuun offers a line of electrolyte drink tablets that are intended to provide complete hydration when dissolved in 16oz of water. There is plenty of evidence supporting the superiority of electrolyte beverages over water alone, particularly for exercises of longer duration.

Nuun Review: What You Should Know

By Anthony Dugarte, M.D., C.S.C.S

Updated on: Apr 24, 2020

Water is essential for human life. In fact, you’d perish in just days without it. Hydration is so important because water comprises roughly 75% of your body weight.

Inadequate fluid intake is the most common cause of dehydration. Signs that you may be dehydrated include light-headedness, dizziness, headaches, nausea, and fatigue.

Nuun offers flavored, dissolvable, hydration tablets that they claim will provide the hydration needed whether you are training, relaxing, or on the go.

But do their tablets really offer superior hydration when compared to water alone?

In this article, we’ll highlight the available research, if any, supporting the use of electrolyte drinks to help you determine if Nuun is an important addition to your daily regimen.

A Closer Look at Nuun Ingredients: Do They Work?

Nuun claims that the secret behind the complete hydration promised with the use of their products is the electrolyte content packed into each serving.

The ingredients list varies slightly product to product, though each Nuun tablet is 10–20 calories, contains just 1–2g of sugar and offers the following electrolytes:

  • Calcium 13–15mg (1–2% RDV)
  • Sodium 100–380mg (4–17% RDV)
  • Chloride 40–80mg (2–4% RDV)
  • Potassium 100–200mg (2–4% RDV)

But is there actually any scientific support that they promote hydration?

Adequate hydration may actually involve much more than just drinking water. Your electrolytes, electrically charged minerals, help maintain fluid balance in addition to their other vital roles related to heart and muscle function.

Though Nuun has not been studied as a stand-alone product, electrolytes’ role in hydration has been studied.

Sodium plays a major role in fluid balance. It allows for fluid retention when water is scarce, as well as the elimination of excess when too much has been consumed.

One study examined the effects of an electrolyte beverage in subjects that limited fluid and food intake for 24-hours. Researchers found that a high sodium beverage resulted in a more favorable electrolyte balance and water retention when compared to the placebo.

While inadequate fluid intake can lead to dehydration, excess fluid loss is another common cause. In fact, you lose both water and electrolytes through sweat during physical activity. Electrolyte loss during exercise can negatively affect performance and may be associated with muscle cramps.

Consuming beverages that contain both electrolytes and carbohydrates during exercise can be more advantageous than water alone, particularly during events lasting longer than 3-hours.

The rehydration benefits of this combination were seen in those that consumed an electrolyte and carbohydrate beverage after losing 2.5% of their body weight through strenuous exercise.

The American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) recommends drinks containing 0.5–1g/L of sodium, depending on the duration of physical activity.

It would take multiple Nuun tablets to achieve these levels, though your diet (fruits and vegetables) also supply electrolytes and contribute to your hydration status.

Is Nuun Safe?

Nuun electrolyte tablets are generally safe when used as directed, though side effects are possible.

There is such a thing as “hyperhydration,” or consuming excess fluids. Generally, you are able to remove the excess through urination, though those with poorly functioning kidneys may have trouble maintaining balance.

So-called “water intoxication” can look similar to dehydration. Common symptoms include fatigue, confusion, headache, nausea, vomiting, or even coma and death.

If you feel your hydration is inadequate, speak to a physician. The underlying cause may be related to a condition that requires medical management.

The Nuun Product Line

Nuun offers 5 different products that are all available in a variety of flavors:

  • Nuun Sport is intended to offer complete hydration for exercise, while also offering 40mg of caffeine for an energy boost.

  • Nuun Immunity provides a blend of vitamin C and botanicals to support immune function while hydrating.

  • Nuun Rest promotes hydration and restfulness by including ingredients like cherry, magnesium, and potassium.

  • Nuun Vitamins supports hydration and overall health by adding vitamins A, B, C, D, and E.

  • Nuun Endurance blends electrolytes and carbs to boost exercise performance.

Pricing and Satisfaction Guarantee

Nuun tablets are available directly from their site.

Tablets are offered in 10-serving tubes and Nuun claims that most individuals require 1–4 daily, though they recommend not exceeding 6 in one day.

Pricing is currently $7 per tube, regardless of product or flavor. Thus, you’ll need at least $21 to get you through the month. That’s about 70 cents per tab.

Nuun also offers a subscription service for additional savings ranging from 5–10% off. You can set the frequency of delivery at 1, 2, or 3-month increments and cancel any time.

Your order ships free when you spend $45 or more. Also, with a 120-day satisfaction guarantee, you have plenty of time to try Nuun risk-free.

To process your refund, mail your product, proof of purchase, and guarantee approval confirmation number to: Nuun & Company, Inc., 800 Maynard Ave. South, Suite 102, Seattle, WA, 98134.

For additional inquiries, contact support at 855-426-6886 or info@nuunlife.com.

Nuun products are also available at Amazon. Packs of 3-8 tubes (30–80 servings) range from $18–$42. Purchasing here may save you a dollar or two, though you may be subjected to Amazon’s 30-day return policy rather than Nuun’s 120-day guarantee.

Popular Alternatives

Electrolyte beverages are by no means a recent phenomenon. Nuun offers a fairly unique means of hydration, however.

Traditionally, electrolyte drinks often include added sugar that can lead to weight gain. You’re also unlikely to find Gatorade or Powerade for 70 cents. These are 2 major advantages Nuun provides.

Many of the major brands do offer beverages free of added sugar. Gatorade’s Zero Sugar Thirst Quencher line is offered at about $24 for a 24-pack.

You can also opt for coconut water to fill up on sodium, potassium, calcium, and magnesium. You can typically pick up a bottle for $1.50–$3.

Liquid I.V. offers pre-mixed powders comparable to Nuun Endurance. Each stick is packed with electrolytes, vitamins, and minerals. 24-pack costs about $35, or $1.46 per stick.

The Bottom Line

Nuun offers a line of electrolyte drink tablets designed to support hydration. They offer various products with extra ingredients that are intended to provide additional benefits beyond just hydration.

The role of electrolytes in hydration has been well studied. There is ample evidence supporting the superiority of electrolyte beverages over water alone.

Nuun also offers a combination of carbs and electrolytes geared specifically towards exercise. This combination is backed by research, particularly for exercises of longer duration.

Though Nuun’s electrolyte content falls short of rehydration recommendations, you will likely still hit these marks with a balanced diet and multiple Nuun tablets.

At Amazon, Nuun Sport garners a 4.5-star rating on more than 1200 reviews – over 45% of which are 5-stars. The reasons for such stellar marks cited by happy customers revolve around the portability of the tablets, their cost-effectiveness, and the ability to quickly boost energy without sugar.

With favorable reviews, low risk for harmful side effects, and cost-effective pricing, Nuun seems to be a good option for hydrating. Still, speak with a doctor if you feel your hydration status is subpar.

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