Sports drinks aren’t just for show and branding. They do have their purpose. Athletes and pretty much anyone who works out regularly are partial to said beverage because of its electrolyte and water-replenishing properties. We sweat a lot when we exercise. We become dehydrated and we lose vital electrolytes in the process. We need both not only to keep us going but to also maintain the body’s chemical balance. They’re also very important for recovery after a particularly hard work out.
The problem is companies put in a lot of additives and more sugar than necessary, which could prove to be harmful long-term. Store brand sports drinks contain refined sugars, food dyes, preservatives. And they can cost a good amount of money, too, if regularly consumed. There are healthier and cheaper options though. And we’ve listed down a few for you loyal readers.
We do recognize that coconut water is not readily available everywhere and if they are, they tend to be packaged and treated in some way. But for the most part, they have fewer additives than your usual sports drink brand. It doesn’t always need to be fortified with minerals because it has naturally occurring mineral content like sodium, zinc, potassium, magnesium and so on. So do read the label and shop for a brand that has an ingredients list that you are comfortable with.
Watermelon juice is very rich is electrolytes like thiamin, riboflavin, vitamin B6, manganese, etcetera. And it tastes darn good, too! You can buy it from the shop or why not just make your own? Toss a few deseeded chunks in a blender and you got yourself a nice refreshing sports drink to take with you to the gym. If you’re feeling lazy, just munch on the fruit. It’s just the same only you get a good fiber buff. It’s not complicated.
If you can find it, aloe water is an excellent sports drink alternative. It has no less than 20 kinds of amino acids plus of different electrolyte minerals to keep your body in great chemical balance until next Tuesday. It has anti-inflammatory properties as well so it’s perfect for post-workout recovery. It’s an old school remedy that’s making its way to the modern world.
No. We haven’t gone completely mad here by suggesting what is essentially a rich, possibly sweet treat for hydration and electrolyte replenishment. But as mentioned, sports drinks also play a role not just in real-time replenishment but also recovery after working out. Chocolate milk has very good carbohydrate and protein ratio. It also has good calcium, iron, vitamin A and D, and fat content. These are all essential for muscle healing. So don’t be worried about taking a chug or two while and after working out.
Make Your Own
This is hardly unexpected. DIY recipes are all the rage now and sports drink is no exception. If you really want to be hands on with your exercise refresher, then we have a basic recipe for you. Three cups of water, about two tablespoons of real maple syrup or raw honey, if you can get it, a quarter cup of your favorite natural fruit juice, two tablespoons of apple cider vinegar, and a pinch of natural sea salt. BAM! Your own Gatorade. Make it in large batches and chill in the fridge to save up on the washing. It tastes better and is just altogether better for you.
While not entirely a sports drink substitute, ThinTea’s Detox and Fat Burn blend are still quite good pre and post workout drinks. The Detox blend safely eliminates wastes and toxins so your choice of drink and its replenishing electrolytes are absorbed and used up better. The Fat Burn gives a nice, natural energy boost to keep you going. And it’s all without sugar, caffeine, laxatives, and gluten! So get your packs now and drink to a healthier you!