Do You Even Need a Sports Drink?
For the majority of people, sports drinks are not really necessary and do add to salt and sugar intake. The conditions in which proper rehydration is important include:
- Exercising in very hot weather
- When working out intensely for more than one hour, particularly if sweating profusely
- In cases of vomiting or diarrhea, particularly if lasting greater than half a day or in infants
- Professional athletes
It’s important in these instances to get the body rehydrated as quickly as possible. Salt and glucose solutions facilitate the uptake of water in the gastrointestinal tract. Sports drinks and pediatric electrolyte replacements are good for that, but often contain large amounts of sugar, artificial colours and flavours. You can make your own somewhat healthier and less expensive oral rehydration therapy mix.
Homemade Sports Drink Recipe
- 1L of pure spring water
- 4 teaspoons of sugar
- 1 teaspoon of unrefined sea salt
The advantages to this concoction are:
- Lower sugar
- No artificial flavours or colours
- Broader spectrum mineral replacement than just sodium and chloride
By Dr. Pamela Frank, BSc(Hons), ND. For sports nutrition advice, see one of our licensed naturopaths. Call us at 416-481-0222 or book online now.
Junk Food in Disguise
These 4 foods masquerade as health food. Yummy they might be, healthy they are not, here’s why:
Energy Bars and Energy Drinks
The “energy” in these products usually takes the form of lots of sugar and/or caffeine. They may even provide a temporary surge in energy due to blood sugar spikes, but watch out for the crash after that will leave you feeling tired and drive cravings for more sugar and/or caffeine.
Most granola cereal is high in fat and sugar, and other than grain-free granola (there’s a recipe on our website here) all are high carbs.
Most commercial yogourts are not prepared properly to confer the health benefits of yogourt and instead are full of thickeners like gelatin and sugar. A serving of yogourt may contain 1 billion beneficial bacteria for your gut. One capsule of a good probiotic will contain the equivalent of 100 servings of yogourt.
Juice bars offer these to health conscious consumers, but most are loaded with sugar. At one outlet, the smallest size has 340 calories and 69 grams of sugar (I recommend no more than 25 grams per serving of sugar/carbs in anything).
By Dr. Pamela Frank, BSc(Hons), ND. For real advice about what would be healthy to eat and how to prepare healthier versions of these for yourself, contact one of our naturopathic doctors. Call us at 416-481-0222 or book online now.