Your Favorite Sports Drink Is Lying To You. Here's Why

Sports drinks like Gatorade and Powerade have different benefits associated with them. For example, if you've just finished a tough workout session and are in need of a quick boost, sports drinks can replace lost electrolytes. They're flavored and may even be sold cold at a convenience or grocery store, making it easy to down a whole bottle on incredibly hot summer days. 

The thing with sports drinks, like everything else in the market, is that you need to pay attention to the ingredients to avoid making the wrong choice for your health. Some drinks may have far too much sugar in them for people who need or want to cut back on the sweet stuff. And the worst part is that you may not even realize this. For instance, consuming 20 ounces of Gatorade's Thirst Quencher will give 36 grams of sugar (via Healthline). For perspective, consider that the American Heart Association advises men to not consume not more than 36 grams of added sugar every day while women are asked to limit their intake to 24 grams. Unfortunately, even if you technically know how much sugar is in a single serving, you still might not truly realize how much sugar you're drinking in a single sitting.

A serving might not be as big as you think

As per HuffPost, even if it may be tempting to grab a bottle of Gatorade or something similar when you're out and about, you may end up taking in a lot more calories than you wish or expect if you overlook certain details. It comes down to this: One serving of your sports drink may be very different from what you perceive it to be. Registered dietician Kylie Ivanir said that certain brands offer more than one serving in a single bottle: "For example, Gatorade and some brands of kombucha actually contain two servings or more per bottle. This is a common misconception because when you pick up a beverage that comes in a bottle, your brain automatically thinks that the whole serving is the bottle."

Another thing worth remembering is that you don't actually need sports drinks to hydrate. Yes, their perceived ability to hydrate you may be a little overrated. As illustrated by CNET, drinking water is far more essential than a sports drink, something that you may occasionally benefit from. Some sports drinks don't even have electrolytes. It makes more sense to include sports drinks in your regular diet if you're an athlete.