Student Perspective: Are Sports Drinks Good For You?

Sport Drinks

By Andrew Y. and Luke C.

Sports drinks have been said to be bad by many parents, but why are they so bad? What do they do to our bodies?  And most importantly, what do they do in the long run?

Sports drinks have many bad things in them, such as an absurd amount of sodium and sugar. Just one 21 fluid ounce Gatorade bottle contains 21 grams of sugar. This is more sugar than anybody should eat in three and a half days, and in one bottle. This excess amount of sugar harms many of your body parts, like your teeth and brain.

It also has lots of fat, which hardens inside your body. This fat, especially if consumed after exercise, builds up in your body and causes the fat that is prevalent in ⅕ of American teens.  It is not only the fat that affects us, but it is also the unnatural amount of sodium. Many sports drinks have lots of sugar and salt that can build up in your body and cause more unnecessary fat.  

Many sports drinks also have artificial food coloring and favors like Red 40 or Yellow 1, which don´t do any good to your body.  These food coloring don’t really help your body out and just add chemicals to your body.

However, for athletes, it can help to replenish valuable electrolytes and carbohydrates.

According to the Mayo Clinic, “… if you’re exercising for more than 60 minutes, use a sports drink. Sports drinks can help maintain your body’s electrolyte balance and give you a bit more energy because they contain carbohydrates”.

As you exercise, your body uses up electrolytes, which are necessary for fluid control, and carbohydrates, which provide energy.  It also provides carbohydrates, which give energy that is necessary to keep on exercising.

But this is only for people who exercise for more than a hour every day, not people who walk just 10 minutes to school.  In that case, the carbohydrates will just build up in your body and instead of becoming energy, will become fat.

So, sports drinks can be good for some, but harmful to others, as the many ingredients can provide energy or electrolytes or extra, unnecessary fat and artificial ingredients.  Also, for many non-athletes, it would be better to instead drink water that would do the same trick and eat fruits like bananas, which also provide electrolytes.  Remember, you are what you eat.

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