Sports drinks are by far the most ubiquitous refueling option presently used. They usually contain carbohydrate in the form of sugar, as well as minerals and electrolytes and occasionally vitamins, protein, or caffeine.
There are well-known options, like Powerade and Gatorade, plus many different lesser-known competitors.
Powerade vs Gatorade vs water – which is better?
This brand is owned by Coca-Cola and it was released in 1988 to compete with PepsiCo’s sports drinks brand. Since that time, Coca-Cola has captured around 20 percent of the sports drinks market.
Ingredients for white cherry flavor – high fructose corn syrup, water, sodium chloride, citric acid, potassium citrate, natural flavors, coconut oil, modified food starch, calcium chloride, magnesium chloride, niacinamide (vitamin B3), potassium phosphate, cyanocobalamin (vitamin B12), and pyridoxine hydrochloride (vitamin B6),
Sugar – the sugar content usually comes from high-fructose corn syrup.
Electrolytes and vitamins – electrolytes are charged metallic “ions” which control the pH of our blood and help balance fluid pressure inside your cells.
Electrolytes are actually minerals and include – calcium, chlorine, phosphate, potassium, magnesium, and sodium, and affect how well your muscles function and allow other essential processes in the body to occur.
One bottle contains vitamin B3 (0,5 mg), vitamin B5 (0,1 mg), vitamin B6 (0,1 mg), vitamin C (1 mg), vitamin K (0,5 µg), calcium (2,4 mg), iron (0,1 mg), phosphorus (24,4 mg), potassium (36,6 mg), and sodium (95,2 mg).
Flavor types – there are many interesting flavors that are available, such as grapefruit, lemon, blackcurrant, blood orange, white cherry, blackberry, blue raspberry, melon, lemonade, tropical mango, kiwi, and pineapple.
This brand started in 1965 at the University of Florida ( which is the home of the Gators) and is the epitome of sports drinks.
The formula of this drink was discovered when a coach realized that his athletes were tired after long days of practice.
It is owned by PepsiCo and has around 70 percent of the sports drinks market. It claims to provide the perfect formulated drink and has a catchy slogan – “Is it in you.”
Ingredients – sugar, water, citric acid, dextrose, artificial and natural flavors, sodium citrate, salt, ester gum, monopotassium phosphate, color, and modified corn starch.
Sugar – it contains sucrose, commonly referred to as table sugar or simple sugars, which is made up of two monosaccharide sugar units. It is produced in large amounts mainly from sugar beets and sugarcane. Moreover, it contains dextrose, a simple sugar which is chemically identical to blood sugar, or glucose.
Electrolytes and vitamins – one bottle contains vitamin B1 (0,1 mg), vitamin B3 (1,3 mg), vitamin B5 (0,3 mg), vitamin B6 (0,1 mg), vitamin C (2,1 mg), vitamin K (1,2 µg), calcium (6,1 mg), iron (0,3 mg), manganese (0,1 mg), phosporus (61 mg), potassium (91,5 mg), sodium (237 mg), and zinc (0,1 mg).
Flavor types – some of the most popular flavors are – cool blue, blue cherry, arctic blitz, glacier freeze, strawberry lemonade, orange, strawberry watermelon, fruit punch, riptide rush, nuestro sabor, green apple, and lemon-lime.
Water is the most important nutrient for people. Your cells need water in order to transport essential nutrients and produce chemical reactions. Without water – you will die. Drinking plenty of water after practicing physical exercise is important for replacing the fluids you lose.
According to the American College of Sports Medicine, if you’re running for 60 minutes or longer, drink 2 to 4 ounces of water every twenty minutes.
If you happen to feel you need extra electrolytes due to your excessive sweating, you can combine your own electrolyte cocktail using 1 cup orange juice, 1 cup plain water, and a pinch of Himalayan salt.
However, the best method to protect yourself against the possibility of dehydration is to plan ahead. If you know that you will be practicing moderate physical exercise, start drinking water early in the day to make sure your body has sufficient reserves.
Therefore, whether you’re a weekend warrior or an elite athlete, drinking water before, during and after exercise is important if you want to get the most out of your physical exercise and feel good while you’re doing it.
What about Coconut Water?
Coconut water is made naturally in the fruit and contains 94 percent water, fiber, protein, and very low amounts of sugar and fat. Tender coconut water contains more important nutrients than mature coconut water.
Moreover, raw coconut water is a storehouse of electrolytes which will not only help you keep your body from getting any cramps but also stay hydrated.
In one boottle of fresh coconut water you can find – vitamin B1 (0,1 mg), vitamin B2 (0,1 mg), vitamin B3 (0,2 mg), vitamin B5 (0,1 mg), vitamin B6 (0,1 mg), folate (7,2 µg), vitamin A (5,8 mg), calcium (57,6 mg), copper (0,1 mg), iron (0,7 mg), magnesium (60 mg), manganese (0,3 mg), phosporus (48 mg), potasium (600 mg), seleniuum (2,4 mg), sodium (252 mg), zinc (0,2 mg), dietary fiber (2,5 g), and protein (1,7 g).
The ingredients in coconut water are way more effective at hydrating the human body than any sports drinks.
Coconut water offers a tasty alternative to water and is considered the ultimate thirst quencher. However, some long-distance endurance runners may need more specialized products which contain more carbohydrates and sodium.
Sports drinks like Gatorade and Powerade are beneficial when they help the liver in increasing blood glucose supplied to the muscle. Nevertheless, your muscles store over 90 minutes (or more) worth of glucose in the form of glycogen.
The bottom line is that for the majority of people sports drinks provide unnecessary kilojoules, additives, salt, and are an unnecessary financial expense.