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Decoding Sports Drinks

Katie Mazzia MS RD CDE | Vail Valley Medical Center

The perfect sports drink has fluid to keep your blood and muscle cells hydrated carbohydrate for energy plus sodium and potassium so your heart and other muscles work like a fine tuned machine.

Who may benefit from a sports drink?
•    If you exercise longer than an hour. 
•    The American College of Sports Medicine recommends athletes start drinking sooner than later every 15-20 minutes.

Ditch the Gatorade® and Try these Alternatives
All natural without dye/food coloring: Carb BOOM! Electrolyte Drink HEED Clif Shot Electrolyte Drink Powerbar Endurance First Endurance EFS

Extra sodium and calories if you're going the long haul (> 2 hours in the heat): GU Brew Electrolyte Powerbar Endurance Powerbar Ironman Perform First Endurance EFS Perpetuem

Make Your Own Basic All-Natural Sports Drink
•    20 oz. of your choice- 100% juice
•    1/8 tsp.-1/4 tsp. salt
•    12 ounces hot or boiling water (to dissolve salt)
•    ¼ cup lemon juice
Combine ingredients and chill. Makes about four 8-ounce servings (1 liter). Each serving (8oz) = 60 calories 75mg-150mg sodium potassium varies based on juice 15 grams carbohydrate

1 small water bottle (16-20 oz.) = 120 calories 30 grams carbohydrate 150 mg-300mg sodium