To survive, human beings need to consume a certain amount of fluid. With all the sports drinks available on the market today and all that intense marketing, it can be tough to know which drink to choose to rehydrate your body after you exert yourself. Do you choose a sports drink or good old-fashioned water? Let’s look at the facts:
The Composition of Sports Drinks
Water: Sports drinks contain water. Water provides no calories or organic nutrients.
Carbohydrates: Sports drinks contain sugar, fructose, maltodextrins, and other sweeteners, and lots of them. For example, the leading sports drink has 35 grams of sugar in its 12 ounces (0.35 liters) version. You only need this many carbs if you are doing an intensive and long workout.
Electrolytes: Sodium — When you sweat, you lose about 500 milligrams of sodium per pound of sweat. Most sports drinks contain between 35 and 200 milligrams of sodium. Only athletes who work for very long periods in a non-climate-controlled environment would need to supplement with sports drinks on a regular basis. Potassium — Sports drinks contain between 60 and 65 milligrams of potassium. According to Harvard Medical, potassium in the body can be tricky and supplementation should be done only under a doctor’s orders.
The Composition of the Human Body
Considering that the human body is composed of up to 60 percent water, it is obvious that hydration is of utmost importance, especially in extreme heat or during exertion. In general, adult males need around 3.2 quarts (3.03 liters) per day, and adult females need about 2.3 quarts (2.18 liters) per day. This varies somewhat by age and location, and some water is contained in the food we eat. In the heat of summer, we should drink somewhere between eight and 12 ounces (0.24 and 0.35 liters) of water per hour, drinking 12-16 ounces (0.35-0.47 liters) roughly two hours before working in the heat.
The average person should hydrate when they become thirsty, as thirst is the best indicator that we are in need of fluids. Another indicator is the ‘pee test’. Each time you urinate, you should check the color. It should be clear or light yellow. If it’s darker, dehydration is indicated.
A Healthier Sport Drink Alternative
Tyler Mountain Water is excited to announce that we now offer X2 All Natural Energy. This delicious drink option gives you all the energy you need without all the extra ingredients you don’t need. You will Get Energized Naturally™ with this drink that’s filled with green tea, clover honey, natural sugars, ribose, electrolytes and coconut water. X2 provides healthy energy with no artificial ingredients. If you’d like to try X2 you can give us a call or click here to find out more.
What’s the Informed Choice?
For the average person, the informed choice for refreshing hydration is water. The excess carbs/sugars in sports drinks only serve to make most people gain weight because their workouts are not intense enough to require all those extra calories. Unless we do intense, long workouts (over one hour), in a non-climate-controlled environment, the sensible, smart choice for a drink is always going to be clear, pure water, and we should get our carbohydrates and electrolytes from the foods we eat.