Sports Drinks

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Lauren K. Williams, M.S., Registered Dietitian, discusses sports drinks and athlete health.

Lauren K. Williams, M.S., Registered Dietitian, discusses sports drinks and athlete health.

Video transcript

Featuring Lauren K. Williams, M.S., RD

Duration: 1 minute, 21 seconds

Sport nutrition drinks are extremely important for athletes in high levels of competition.

There's two important characteristics that these sports drinks contain. Number one, they're going to contain some sort of energy, so this can be in all different types of forms but as you read the label you want to look for a good amount of carbohydrates in these sports drinks.

They are also going to contain electrolytes, which are extremely important when you're sweating, when you're working hard to make sure to replenish these vitamins and minerals throughout your body.

Some ideas of how you can incorporate sports nutrition drinks is actually just by diluting some fruit juice in your house. So take some apple or some orange juice, dilute it in half, and you have yourself a healthy sports drink.

For more convenient options when traveling or on the road you may find some some sports drinks in your local grocery store. Again, look for electrolytes as well as some carbohydrates to provide you energy to get through that tough competition.

For more information on sports drinks that are right for you to optimize your performance contact your local sports nutritionist or local registered dietitian with a sports nutrition expertise.

Presenter: Ms. Lauren K. Williams, Registered Dietitian, Vancouver, BC

Local Practitioners: Registered Dietitian

Sports Drinks? ( 7 participated.)

Test your knowledge by answering the following questions:


Many sports drinks contain electrolytes, which are essential minerals.


Electrolytes are essential minerals such as sodium, calcium and potassium. They support many key functions in the body, including controlling nervous-system function, balancing pH levels and regulating muscle contractions.


Sports drinks can exacerbate anxiety symptoms.


Some studies have found that sports drinks may increase anxiety symptoms, especially in young men. That's because many sports drinks contain caffeine, which increases heart rate and blood flow.


Sports drinks are entirely safe for children.


Most doctors recommend that children not use energy drinks. Instead of sports drinks that may contain caffeine and sugar, kids should drink water to stay hydrated during exercise. If you have a child or teen who's involved in sports or does vigorous workouts, ask your doctor if sports drinks are a good option.


Sports drinks are only recommended if you're exercising for 60 minutes or more.


While there are exeptions, the general advice from health experts is to reach for an energy drink during intense exercise that lasts for 60 minutes or more. This will help replenish electrolytes lost through sweating.


If a sports drink has sugar, you should avoid it.


Sports drinks often contain carbohydrate in the form of sugar. This helps restore carbohydrate that your body uses during exercise.

This content is for informational purposes only, and is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare professional with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.

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