Love it, Like it, Hate it: Lower-sugar sports drinks

The Crescent City Classic is this weekend, drawing in more than 20,000 runners and walkers.  And while staying hydrated is the most important thing to consider, Molly says that for a race of this length, we might want to re-think the extra calories or sugars found in traditional sports drinks.  In today’s Love it, Like it, Hate it, she has the best and worst options when it comes to figure-friendly electrolyte and fluid replacers.

It’s essential to replenish electrolytes, particularly when losing large amounts of sweat, even during shorter workouts (or working in the heat)

Sodium is the main electrolyte lost in sweat, so a higher-sodium fluid replacer may actually be more desirable for fluid replenishment and preventing muscle cramping.

 

Sugar-containing sports drinks are typically only needed when exercise is longer than 60-90 minutes

 

Love it!

nuun vitamin + electrolyte drink tabs

Add a tab to 16 ounces of water

Per tablet: 7 calories, 1.2 grams carbohydrates, 0 sugar, 180 mg sodium, 77 mg potassium

  • No artificial sweeteners or colors (sweetened with stevia; colored with vegetable juice extracts)

 

 

Like it!

Greater Than coconut water sports drink

Per 20-ounce bottle:

80 calories, 19 grams carbohydrates, 17 grams sugar, 330 mg sodium, 340 mg potassium

  • No artificial sweeteners (sweetened with sucrose and stevia)
  • No artificial colors (colored with natural fruit and vegetable extracts)

G2 NATURAL

Per 16-ounce bottle:  40 calories, 10 grams carbohydrates, 10 grams sugar, 230 mg sodium, 65 mg potassium

  • No artificial sweeteners (sweetened with sucrose and PureVia)
  • No artificial colors (colored with natural vegetable extracts)

 

Hate it!

Propel Zero

Per 12-ounce serving: 0 calories, 0 carbohydrates, 0 sugar, 115 mg sodium

  • Contains artificial sweetener (acesulfame potassium), though it has no artificial colors.

 

Powerade Zero:

Per 20-ounce bottle: 0 calories, 0 carbohydrates, 0 sugar, 250 mg sodium, 60 mg potassium

  • Contains artificial colors and artificial sweeteners (sucralose and acesulfame potassium)

G2 (regular)

Per 20-ounce bottle: 45 calories, 12 grams carbohydrate, 12 grams sugar, 270 mg sodium, 75 mg potassium

  • Contains artificial colors and artificial sweeteners (sucralose and acesulfame potassium)