It seems that the sports drink in your local supermarket or convenience store are virtually endless. With so many colors, flavors, bottle sizes, and advertised functions, how does one choose the right drink? We say go with the best and here’s how you figure out which one of those drinks is the best.
Imagine that you are standing in front of one of those shelves at the local supermarket trying to decide which endurance drink is right for you. This process of elimination will help narrow down your choices. Every time drinks are eliminated, the shelf gets smaller and smaller
Artificial — If it’s got anything artificial in it, it has to go. Sweeteners, colors, any ingredient that is artificial gets put on the chopping block. This is by far the biggest category of products you should not be drinking. If the drink is neon in color, throw it out. If it has artificial sweeteners, throw it out. If its flavors come from artificial sources, you guessed it ... toss it.
Sodium — Now that a major chunk of your choices are gone, that shelf should be looking a lot smaller. Now we have to get into the nitty gritty of drinks to decide what has the potential to be a good nutritional drink. Sodium is the next biggest category to eliminate. Traditional sports nutrition logic suggests that a body needs massive amounts of sodium to help stay hydrated. While sodium is necessary to help transport other key electrolytes into the cell, too much of it is bad. So anything that has a sodium potassium ratio of more than 3 to 1 gets tossed out. Go with low sodium products!
Potassium — Now the shelf should be looking really bare. You are going to be down to a handful of sports and hydration drinks. Now that we have thrown out the high sodium drinks, it’s time to throw out the high potassium drinks. This is only really found in Coconut Water. Currently Coconut Water is under a great deal of scrutiny regarding its supposed false claims about its electrolyte content. Regardless of its true content, coconut water is incredibly high in potassium. Potassium is moved in and out of the cells with the help of sodium so the same logic that forced us to get rid of the high sodium drinks, also requires that we get rid of the high potassium drinks. Your body needs a proper ratio of all electrolytes to function properly.
Sugar Source — We are really down to slim pickings on our shelf and what is left represents some of the healthier sports products available on the market. Now it’s time to talk about efficiency. Drinks use all sorts of sweeteners to make them enjoyable but the right sweeteners also act as a transport mechanism for electrolytes. The wrong sweeteners slow down the process of electrolyte absorption causing more waste. Glucose is your body’s natural sugar and any food product that is taken in has to be converted to glucose before being used as a fuel source. By drinking products that have glucose in them, you ultimately increase the absorption rate and time of electrolytes by removing the unnecessary processing of other sugar sources.
Taste — Finally there is taste. If a product tastes bad, you’re not going to be inclined to drink it. So by removing the hundreds of the products that don’t meet our criteria for a healthy sports drink, you should be left with only one choice, Vitalyte. For over 40 years the very best athletes in the world have turned to Vitalyte as their drink of choice.