Sports drinks have enjoyed a huge surge in popularity in recent years. You rarely see anyone exercising these days without one in their hand.
Yet recently the Times newspaper in the UK reported that some research promoting the value of rehydration had been paid for by that internationally famous rehydrater, Coca-Cola.
And the Guardian reported that Professor Tim Noakes at the University of Cape Town argues that over-hydration is the real problem, partly driven by the drinks industry.
"Most people probably aren't going to become carbohydrate- depleted in a short moderate-intensity gym session," Corbett says. "If you haven't had time to get a meal then a sports drink will give you a quick boost of energy, but there are possibly better ways of doing that." Moreover, if you're exercising to lose weight, a sports drink may even be counterproductive. "Negative calorie balance is what you want if you want to lose weight," Corbett says. "I see it myself. People at the gym walking while consuming these high-energy drinks. Potentially, they could be consuming more calories than they're burning off."
Mizone Peach Sportswater $2.99 for 750mls
Ingredients (in order of greatest quantity):
This bottle is mostly made up of water which has been purified.
Reconstituted apple juice
This is apple juice which has all the water taken out of it and then is reconstituted into this drink. This method provides a lot of sweetness.
This is a form of sugar. Per 750ml bottle you will get 20.9g of sugar or 4.9 teaspoons of sugar.
Apple cider vinegar
This is a natural preservative but also a rehydration agent.
These will be artificial to achieve the peach flavour.
Vitamins (C, B3, B5, B6, B12)
On the bottle it says these vitamins "reduce tiredness and fatigue while unlocking the energy you need".
Acidity Regulator (citric acid)
This is a natural product in here to keep the acidity levels even and also possibly for taste.
Did you know you could make your own sports drink? I found a recipe for homemade Gatorade which calls for 1 tsp apple cider vinegar, 1 tsp honey and a pinch of salt added to a glass of water and stirred. According to Jackie Newton, a former international marathon runner and now an athletics coach, as reported in the Guardian, other liquids are good during exercise, too.
"If it's a recovery drink, I recommend milk for the athletes I work with. It has the right amount of carbohydrate and protein. If you are looking for something to take on a long run, then some cordials, with maybe a little bit of salt in, if it's a hot day."
If you're exercising to lose weight, this will give you 381kj, which isn't too bad for a sports drink. But in my opinion, you'd be better off drinking something that contains less sugar and artificial flavours.
• Contains apple cider vinegar which is a good rehydration agent.
• Uses artificial flavours.
• Has added vitamins.