If you have a gym membership, notice some of the things others are drinking. Most people are drinking water, right? However, you are bound to see people guzzling neon-colored Gatorade. This ubiquitous beverage was one of the first sports drinks introduced in the health and fitness market. We all know today’s market is undulated with various sports drinks. However, Gatorade is still a prominent beverage for school and college sports and fitness teams. Moreover, some parents choose Gatorade over soda for their children, believing that it has less sugar and is good for them. But is Gatorade healthy for you? Here is some information to consider:
General Information About Gatorade
First, Gatorade came on the sports scene in 1965. The University of Florida did some research with their football team, The Gators. They wanted a solution to help their players sustain energy during practice and games. People already knew that dehydration was a major factor in this. However, the researchers discovered that the players were also depleted in carbohydrates and electrolytes.
Consequently, their solution was a beverage that combined water, sodium, sugar, and other minerals. The drink was dubbed “Gatorade” after the team. It was a hit with the team, and they drank it buy the gallons during their games. Moreover, players claimed it gave them more stamina.
Eventually, Gatorade was marketed over America, and eventually the world. Finally, Pepsi Cola now owns the brand. The company created a plethora of flavors, to appeal to everyone’s tastes. But is Gatorade healthy?
Ingredients List For Gatorade
- Filtered Water. Water processed through a filtration system to eliminate impurities.
- High Fructose Corn Syrup (HFCS). For sweet taste
- Brominated Vegetable Oil (BMV). Natural ingredient stabilizer and preservative that comes from soybeans.
- Glycerol Ester of Wood Rosin. Natural ingredient stabilizer, derived from the resin of pine trees.
- Citrus Acid. For taste and a preservative
- Sodium Citrate. Flavor enhancer and ingredient stabilizer
- Potassium chloride (salt). Essential electrolyte to replenish
- Monopotassium Phosphate. Another electrolyte to replenish
- Sucralose. Non-calorie artificial sweetener that adds a sweet taste to sugar-free varieties
- Natural flavors. This is a vague term used in numerous food and beverage ingredient lists. Presumably, these come from natural sources or processes; however, only the manufacturer knows.
- Artificial Colors. Finally, different colors help consumers identify the flavor they want. They come from a numbered list that the FDA approved as safe for human consumption.
The Dangers of Gatorade
Gatorade has about 14 grams of sugar per 8-ounce serving. As such, if you drink a 32-ounce bottle, that would equal 54 grams of sugar. Meanwhile, the American Heart Association recommends no more than 25 grams of added sugar for women and 38 grams for men. Hence, drinking too much Gatorade may contribute to weight gain.
First of all, Gatorade is a good source of added vitamins—but is Gatorade healthy for you? Consuming large portions of Gatorade can cause certain fat-soluble vitamins, like Vitamin A, to build up in the body. Furthermore, vitamin A toxicity can cause nausea, headache, and tiredness.
Is Gatorade healthy for children? Surely, the excess sugar can contribute to childhood obesity or possible tooth decay.
If you have blood pressure problems, your doctor may have you on a low-sodium diet. Is Gatorade healthy for your diet? Most of all, it may contain too much sodium.
5. Artificial Colors
Health providers have been concerned about artificial colors for years. Furthermore, three of these dyes used in different varieties of Gatorade include yellow no. 5, red no. 40, and blue no. 1. According to an article from American Chemical Society.org, artificial colorings come from petroleum products. Moreover, studies suggest these may increase hyperactivity in children, or have a link to cancer.
Are There Benefits For Gatorade?
1. Better than Water
For people involved in intensive sports and exercise, plain water may not be enough. Consequently, a serving of Gatorade can boost their energy, replenish electrolytes, and hydrate them. It is much easier than taking separate supplements during the workout. Moreover, the sports drink is especially beneficial when playing in the heat.
Is Gatorade healthy to drink when you are sick? An article from Penn State University says that drinking some Gatorade is beneficial when you cannot keep anything else down. Furthermore, the source also opines that a serving of the beverage may be suitable for sick children.
Drawing to a Close
Finally, there is no denying that boosting your electrolytes and staying hydrated is a benefit. Is Gatorade healthy in moderation? Naturally, it is much better than drinking soda, which has more sugar and no nutritional value. However, keep in mind that Gatorade is designed for extensive workouts and sporting activities—not with meals or snacks.
Do you have any more information about Gatorade or a comment you would like to share? We welcome your input!
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