Sports Drinks

Manufacturers have spent millions in advertising to promote sports drinks, but are they necessary? Or should we be drinking water? That depends… 

Sports drinks have a purpose: they hydrate, replenish electrolytes, and deliver carbohydrates to the body. Nutrition experts agree that a 6-8% carbohydrate solution is best for this purpose. Most sports drinks on the market are within that range for carbohydrates. Electrolytes, however, differ depending on the manufacturer. Sodium and potassium are added to replace what is lost through sweat. 

Generally, if you are exercising for less than one hour and you begin your workout hydrated, water will do. If your workout is longer than one hour, in a hot or humid environment, or if you are a heavy sweater, a sports drink is a good idea.