They are called electrolytes, which are substances that produce an electrically conducting solution in the bodies of higher lifeforms and are needed to survive.
However, in human beings, electrolytes can be lost through a variety of ways, including perspiration, diarrhea, nausea, colds, flu and other human conditions that drain them from the body.
Although, up until now, the fastest way to replace lost electrolytes was intravenously through an IV, which is expensive, somewhat risky and time consuming.
However, Atlanta anesthesiologist Dr. Luther “Trey” Rollins has invented a new drink, called Biolyte, which can replace lost electrolytes in a person orally without him or her having to go through expensive IV therapies.
According to Rollins, Biolyte is what is referred to as a multifunctional beverage and is quite different from other sports or energy drinks.
“This drink is designed to optimize electrolyte composition, which would better address problems people have as a result of losing electrolytes through perspiration, such as in sports or careers that cause one to perspire heavily,” he said. “Electrolytes are also lost to the body as the result of gastrointestinal illnesses, or in those who overindulge in alcohol and experience hangovers, as well as being important in helping those with multiple chronic and acute medical conditions which result in electrolyte loss.
Rollins, a Buckhead resident who grew up in Atlanta, graduated from Emory University Medical School. He works in private practice in anesthesia and interventional pain medicine at Southeastern Interventional Pain Associates in Sandy Springs, and is uniquely trained and qualified to address fluid replacement therapy including blood, plasma, platelets, fluid and electrolytes.
According Jesslyn Rollins, his daughter and Biolyte’s director of sales, the formula for the drink took more than four years to develop and actually was devised in a somewhat unusual way.
“Dad had conversations with my sister, Sarah, and I about some of our friends going to what are called hydration stations to be connected to intravenous therapy after periods of overindulging in alcohol,” she said. “It was during one of our conversations that Dad mentioned how great it would be for someone to be able to replenish the electrolytes orally without having to endure the cost and risk of intravenous therapy, with an additional goal of addressing the many other shortcomings of so-called sports, energy or electrolyte drinks.”
Biolyte is now available, without a prescription, and costs $2.99 for a 16-ounce bottle. It can be purchased online through Amazon.com, in two of the three Wender & Roberts Pharmacy locations (791 Atlanta St. in Roswell and 1262 W. Paces Ferry Road in Buckhead) and in 30 Kroger stores throughout Georgia.
As far as taste is concerned, Jesslyn Rollins, who drinks Biolyte daily, said it tastes like “a salty Gatorade,” and gives her a natural burst of energy between 3 and 4 p.m. when she experiences what she described as a “big lull and I feel like I need a nap.”
“Biolyte, which is readily absorbed by the body, helps with hydration and has nutrients that my body needs and it certainly helps me get through the day,” she said.
In addition, Biolyte has a liver-protective compound and also antioxidants.
Athletic trainers representing local high schools have raved about Biolyte.
“We have had issues with cramping, especially at the beginning of football season due to extreme temperatures for many years and have tried many different products,” Lovett Head Athletic Trainer Sean DeFalvoro said in a statement. “This year was the first year we have used Biolyte. Our athletes thought the flavor and taste was not overpowering and they started enjoying it. We would give (each player) one bottle 20 minutes before a game and one at halftime. In the past, we would have 10 or so kids cramp, but this year, that was reduced to one to three a game through the first couple of games.”
In a statement, Mary Reeve, head athletic trainer at Holy Innocents’, said, “The thing that amazes me about Biolyte is that you can see how much they are drinking and how much they are taking in, so there is less room for error. You see the direct result of the drink – our (football) players feel more uplifted, we have less crampers and our team has more energy to perform in the last quarter. We even have one kid that had issues with muscle cramps and this is the first and only thing that has helped.”