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Are Sports Drinks More Helpful or Harmful?

Sports 2012/11/05 00:04:59
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Sports drinks are incredibly popular among athletes and non-athletes alike. But are they doing anyone any good? Many medical experts now believe that these salty, sugary, neon-colored drinks have little to offer.

"Sports drinks are oversold and over-hyped," Kelly Brownell, director of the Rudd Center for Food Policy and Obesity at Yale University, told the Los Angeles Times. "If I were Coke or Pepsi, I would sell off these brands. People are starting to figure out sports drinks, and criticism against them is only going to grow."

The argument for sports drinks is that such products replace the fluids, electrolyte minerals (mostly sodium), and carbohydrate fuel lost during intense exercise. Apparently though, most individuals don’t actually need anything when they exercise as long as they start out hydrated and nourished. And if they do need to rehydrate, plain water is generally sufficient.

Interestingly, there isn’t much evidence out there that sports drinks actually improve athletic performance. And then there’s the fact that marketing for drinks like Gatorade and Powerade “has helped feed a dangerous obsession with hydration,” according to Dr. Arthur Siegel, an associate professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School. Apparently, water intoxication—caused by drinking too much water or sports drink before, during, or after physical activity—is actually more dangerous than dehydration.

What do you think SodaHeads? Are sports drinks more helpful or harmful?

Read More: http://www.latimes.com/health/la-he-sports-drinks-...

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Top Opinion

  • T-dub 2012/11/05 15:25:16
    Harmful
    T-dub
    +4
    If you're looking for hydration and electrolyte's, get some coconut water.

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Opinions

  • kateisgod 2012/12/02 20:13:51
    Harmful
    kateisgod
    Just drink some Dihydrate monoxide!
  • realist 2012/11/27 06:14:41
    Harmful
    realist
    They do taste great, but if you need electrolytes that quickly then you just aren't hydrated enough to begin with.

    If you are active you should be drinking 6+ liters of water a day depending on your size at a minimum.
  • <3!Shezza!<3 2012/11/08 00:54:32
    Helpful
    <3!Shezza!<3
    in my opinion i think they are as i play alot of sports and i drink sports drink and after a hard game of they help out
  • luke 2012/11/08 00:01:24
    Harmful
    luke
    +1
    You wanna know what the best sports drink is?

    WATER.
  • gidianedwards97 2012/11/07 23:22:55
    Harmful
    gidianedwards97
    they just trick the body into thinking it is ok
  • greenapple 2012/11/07 01:03:17
    Helpful
    greenapple
    uhh...
    i guess?
  • Kelso(: 2012/11/06 23:31:06
    Helpful
    Kelso(:
    I don't really see how they would help, but then i also don't see how they could hurt anything.
  • TKramar 2012/11/06 17:43:20
    Helpful
    TKramar
    you need water in some form. If it's part of a juice, or a soda, or a sports drink, or a beer, you're still getting the liquid replenishment you need.
  • Alisa 2012/11/06 16:26:21
    Harmful
    Alisa
    energy=yes weight loss= No
  • Eric C. 2012/11/06 12:57:49
    Harmful
    Eric C.
    But they make me feel sportier, at least.
  • AskZilla 2012/11/06 09:35:15
    Harmful
    AskZilla
    HFCS, Sugar and more HFCS. It would be different if the people drinking them were athletes, however the average Joe Schmoe has no need for this crap, especially the dangerous Red Bull type drinks.
  • Rocki 2012/11/06 08:00:53
    Helpful
    Rocki
    Like all things used properly they are helpful. Used excessively they mess with your blood sugar.
  • Dave In Cali 2012/11/06 07:53:55
    Harmful
    Dave In Cali
    If you are genuinely sweating, a bottle of Gatorade, or one of its competitors, can do a world of good. Most people don't exercise at a level that is extreme enough to merit chugging one of these, however, and should stick with water or diluted fruit juice. Most sports drinks contain salts and minerals which expected to have been lost due to perspiration and exertion. My own brother had to be checked into a hospital for renal failure during a golf tournament in hot weather. What was he drinking? Gatorade. 2 or three bottles a day, with little or no water. He got kidney stones from it and his sodium measurements were off the charts.

    Water is contained in the word "hydration". That is all.
  • Mindy 2012/11/06 05:20:32
    Harmful
    Mindy
    The drs. have come together to say they aren't good for you, at the least, and harmful at most.
  • Merlin 2012/11/06 05:04:01
    Harmful
    Merlin
    Depends on the sports drink, actually.
  • Random 2012/11/06 02:51:06 (edited)
    Helpful
    Random
    Neither really. They probably don't do much, but it does rehydrate me well when I need it. (Hangover or to help with my low blood pressure.) Water is better to drink. But I prefer the taste of Powerade.
  • Stephen 2012/11/06 02:16:14
    Helpful
    Stephen
    In my opinion, they are helpful.
  • Olde' Smoke 2012/11/06 01:47:28
    Helpful
    Olde' Smoke
    I know when I was sucking weight for wrestling a Gatorade was one of the best things I could drink after weigh ins. Loosing all the weight was the dangerous part
  • Fockq 2012/11/06 01:21:05
    Helpful
    Fockq
    they look yummy
  • TimothyBrianFoley 2012/11/06 00:44:13
    Helpful
    TimothyBrianFoley
    vitamin water vitamin water
  • pederu 2012/11/06 00:09:38
    Helpful
    pederu
    +1
    If used correctly. The other day, my friend was talking about how healthy he was going to start acting; about an hour later he was laying around on the couch and I said "what happened to healthy?" and he said "it's okay I'm drinking a gatorade" face palm
  • Ian 2012/11/05 23:57:19
    Harmful
    Ian
    +1
    I guess mcdonalds is helpful to
  • Kaye 2012/11/05 23:38:23
    Helpful
    Kaye
    +2
    The electrolytes are helpful
  • countrygirl16 2012/11/05 22:30:04
    Harmful
    countrygirl16
    I don't drink sports drinks but I did hear they aren't good for ya so...
  • Kaye country... 2012/11/05 23:40:44
    Kaye
    They're not really good for you,but better than coke etc.the electrolytes are the only thing helpful
  • Kaye Kaye 2012/11/05 23:46:05
    Kaye
    My sons are both type1 diabetics they have to replace them so they buy powerade zero,hardly any sugar
  • country... Kaye 2012/11/06 22:44:42
    countrygirl16
    Yeah, probably better than most pop and oh,didn't know that
  • ☆stillthe12c☆ 2012/11/05 22:27:03
    Harmful
    ☆stillthe12c☆
    +2
    I think a banana, honey and a glass of milk would work just as well. That is what I used when I competed.
  • elizabeth.okoro.90 2012/11/05 22:25:48
    Harmful
    elizabeth.okoro.90
    +1
    Come on now! have you seen what is inside of them and what can do to you? whatever happened to good ole water?? *sigh* *aigoo* our generation does not know what is good for themselves
  • jt 2012/11/05 21:15:57 (edited)
    Harmful
    jt
    +1
    Isn't it just sugar and salt mixed with water? I guess it's ok for those times when you can't get your calories and sugar any other way.
  • Cal 2012/11/05 20:50:56
    Helpful
    Cal
    They seem good to me. I like the gatorade recovery shakes personally.
  • rustyshackelford 2012/11/05 20:43:03
  • pederu rustysh... 2012/11/06 00:10:56
    pederu
    +1
    It's got electrolytes! What plants crave!
  • Jake 2012/11/05 20:31:21
  • Sister Jean 2012/11/05 20:30:51
    Harmful
    Sister Jean
    harmful..water better
  • Alexander T Steward 2012/11/05 20:23:37
  • Sidrah Zaheer 2012/11/05 19:55:41
    Helpful
    Sidrah Zaheer
    I think unless otherwise being too strong, I think they do help a bit in getting the required energy.
  • happyman 2012/11/05 19:44:13
    Helpful
    happyman
    They are helpful if used properly....
  • lovemykiddos 2012/11/05 19:42:38
    Helpful
    lovemykiddos
    +1
    However water is the best choice.
  • Kaimeso 2012/11/05 19:21:19
    Harmful
    Kaimeso
    +1
    All the extra crap in sports drinks is just that, extra crap. But for those that MUST have a sports drink, one can be created by adding sodium (salt) to Kool-aid,..

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