Do You Need a Sports Drink?
If you’re a game freak or ever watch sports, then you have probably seen players drinking brightly colored beverages which known as sports drinks. These sport’s drinks are a big part of the beverages business across the world.
By watching such drinks in advertisements many people believe that sport’s drinks are magical and it will improve workout performance. There are also a few people who say that these drinks are just for marketing and you should stick with water.
Today we will be talking about do you need a sports drink or not?
What’s actually in a sports drink?
Sports drinks restore glucose, water, and electrolytes that are lost during strenuous exercise or after a long game on the pitch.
Sports drinks have carbohydrates in the form of sugar, however, some drinks contain no sugar and are flavored instead with low-calorie sweeteners. These sugars later break down into glucose that providing quick hydration and absorption.
Sports drinks are only needed after the intense exercise lasts an hour or more. For non-athletes, this is just a sugary drink.
Examples of sports drinks include Accelerade, Gatorade, and Powerade, etc.
Who should be drinking sports drinks and when?
Sports drinks help to reduce fatigue and improve performance after continuous exercise for more than an hour by keeping you hydrated. The main reason to consume sports drinks is to provide carbohydrates and prevent dehydration.
Sports drinks are only for players who spend long hours on the pitch for practices and games. For non-athletes, it’s like any other soft drink that contains only sugar and soda.
Drinking plain water after intense exercise is not suggested because it can cause cramps or swelling due to the fluid accumulation by cells. Plain water can also cause hyponatremia or low sodium levels in the blood. Instead of plain water players can go for orange juice that contains electrolytes and antioxidants. They can drink coconut water, it naturally has some of the key components that are found in sports drinks.
Can sports drinks be harmful?
A doctor of science and assistant professor at the University of Toronto says, most people don’t need sports drinks. Hydration can be restored with water and electrolytes can be restored with orange juice, coconut water, and your regular diet that naturally contains electrolytes.
Try to avoid the sports drink as much as you can. Water is a healthier choice — especially when you’re not performing intense exercise in humid weather. Because sports drinks have added sugar and calories that are associated with a higher risk of complications from conditions like obesity, diabetes, etc.
According to a study published in 2019 consumption of sports drinks and other soft drinks has a higher risk of total mortality, cardiovascular diseases, and cancer.
The main components of sports drinks are water, carbohydrates, and electrolytes. Some research shows their benefits for players who are playing or practicing for more than an hour. However, try to avoid sports drinks as much as you can. Several beverages can be used to be hydrated including plain water. You can also have bananas for instant energy. But if you’re choosing sports drinks, be aware of their calorie contents.
Topic covered in this article:
- What’s actually in a sports drink?
- Who should be drinking sports drinks and when?
- Can sports drinks be harmful?
Thanks for reading this article. I hope this helps!