When it comes to guzzling energy drinks, of late I have slowed down in purchasing and drinking them. At one point I could always be spotted drinking one, desperately trying to get a much needed energy rush however since being diagnosed with M.E and Klein Levin Syndrome (Sleeping Beauty disorder) I have stopped short realising that no matter how much I seemed to guzzle them they didn't do very much for me at all and I was quite simply wasting my money!
However the other night I was out and about shopping and simply flagging slightly. I'd had a busy day so when in Asda I decided to pick one of these up at 79p a bottle to try out and hopefully wake myself up with!
Tall orange and black plastic bottle with a screw on/off black cap/lid to the top of it and down two sides of it we are told that it is Sparkling Orange Powerade Energy 'Dual Energy, Energise Fast Sustain Performance'. Other information listed on the bottle includes being told a bit about the drink, ingredients are listed as well as an an at a glance nutritional chart and full nutritional breakdown chart, the size is stated which in this case is 500ml and contact details for Coca-Cola (the manufacturer of the product are listed). Nice, bright bottle this is and informative enough too.
The Drink Itself:
Well this drink is only very slightly sparkling, best served chilled/cold (in my opinion) and smells of fresh and zesty oranges. Taste wise is is sugary sweet but naturally so and really refreshing and of course tastes of tangy oranges. Orange in colour and transparent it looks like orange pop really and basically apart from being sweeter to many I have tasted before is really pleasant and leaves no lingering taste in the mouth after drinking it.
This is a blend of course of glucose and caffeine and is enriched with added B Vitamins which is meant to deliver a balanced blend of carbohydrates for sustained performance, so this drink is suitable for anyone needing a quick and effective bout of energy including anyone taking part in sports...or like me over doing it with shopping!
I found this to quench thirst and refresh me quickly and I have to say that I did feel a little more perky and like my sugar levels were upped for a time after drinking this. I certainly felt a bit more alert like I'd drunk a large black coffee although I wouldn't say I was ready to run a marathon!
A nice, sugary drink that works to a degree for me and I certainly will be purchasing it time and time again in the future!
Nutritional Information Per 250ml Serving:
Calories: 111 Kcal
Available in all good shops.
This review is also posted on Ciao under this same username.
Isotonic is a type of sports drink which contains a similiar amount of salt and sugar that is present in the human body. Sports drinks are commonly used by athletes by replacing the electrolytes lost during exercise or training and delay tiredness associated with loss of hydration in the body. Examples of Isotic drinks include Lucozade Sport, Gatorade and Powerade.
Powerade is part of the Coca Cola company and produces a range of Isotonic Sports Drinks. Powerade was introduced in 1988 as it became the official drink of the Great Olympics. There is the option of Powerade Zero which contains no calories or carbohydrates. Powerade has actually been renamed as Powerade ION4 due to containing a mineral system of sodium, potassium, calcium and magnesium and claims to give you better performance than normal water. It also claims to replace the minerals lost through sweat during exercise.
Through the years, there have been different flavours of Powerade available. The current UK stock of flavours include Orange, Cherry, Ice Storm and also Berry & Tropical Fruit. The zero version is available in Berry Tropical and Red Berry. The orange flavour is described as being "still orange flavour isotonic drink with sugars and sweeteners".
Powerade Orange is housed within a tall, clear plastic bottle which is ridged almost all the way up for easy handling during exercise. The lid offers two drinking options..it can be fully removed and drunk that way or drunk using the sports type cap. A black label runs around the top of the bottle giving information including nutrition, ingredients etc. The label also confirms it is an official drink of the GB team for the 2012 Olympics and various other teams. The bottle can be recycled after use.
Promotiing itself as being a sports drink, it is always good to check what it is you are actually drinking. It is no surprise that sugar is highly present and also sweeteners but the full list of ingredients are as follows :
Water , Glucose , Maltodextrin , Citric Acid , Acidity Regulators (E331, E332) , Stabilisers (Acacia Gum, E445) , Antioxidant (Ascorbic Acid) , Flavourings , Vitamins (Niacin, E, Panthothenic Acid, B6, Biotin) , Sweeteners (Aspartame, Acesulfame K) , Colour (E160a) , Contains a source of Phenylalaine
A 250ml serving (half a bottle) contains the following nutritional statistics :
0.8mg vitamin E
0.14mg vitamin B6
0.38mg pantothenic acid
I don't claim to know the ins and outs of all of the nutritional benefits but I feel neccessary to include for those who need this information.
*~*Availability and Price*~*
Powerade Orange can be purchased in a 500ml size. Corner shops may stock this around the £1.10-£1.50 mark. Supermarkets do multi packs. Asda currently offer a 4pk of this one for £3.48.
I go to the gym a few times per week. Whilst I am confident that water is the best thing for me (and the cheapest as I can refill a bottle), after a long workout, I start to feel tired and queasy as water isn't giving me a strong energy boost. For years I have used but not relied upon sports drinks and my preference is Lucozade Sport for taste and performance. Now when I go to the gym, I go with a bottle of water and also a sports drink.
The vending machine in my gym offers water, normal Lucozade (the stuff we all seem to drink when feeling crappy), Lucozade Sport (orange/berry) and a few different flavours of Powerade. I first tried Powerade a few years ago and started off with the blue one which just didn't taste nice and put me off. I find the berry one far too sweet so on the occasion I want a change from Lucozade Sport, I now drink the Powerade Orange.
I prefer a sports cap bottle as it means there is less spillage when I need a drink quickly during exercise. The bottle is easy to hold and is slim enough to slot into the compartments on the exercise machines that I use. The drink itself is paler than Lucozade Sport Orange and resembles that of a very diluted orange squash. It is cloudy yellow and looks very watery.
*~*When Water Just Isn't Enough*~*
I do a combination of cardio and weights and normally go for a 2hour gym session. My programme is set out so that its mainly weights I do first. I don't live overly heavy weights but still enough to get my blood pumping. During this time, I can generally get away with taking a few gulps of cold water in between the weight machines. I am not the fittest of people and tire very easily. I used to be a case of if I got tired, I would simply give up but as I am trying to lose quite a bit of weight, I cannot do this now.
By the time I get to the cardio machines, I can feel myself tiring. Each machine I go including the treadmill and lat machine lasts for a 10-15min session at different gradients/speeds. My blood gets pumping really quickly and I find that water just doesn't cut it as I am sweating and not getting the hydration I need to be on top form and get through the rest of my workout. This is where the Powerade comes in.
I usually opt to take a drink before I get on the machine. The taste isn't what I would call pleasant. It does have a watery with a tiny hint of orange squash flavouring. It also has a slight chemical undertone but I find if I swallow it down quick enough, it only leaves a gentle, bitter aftertaste in my mouth. It isn't sweet and as easy to drink as the Lucozade I am used to but it is bearable for my gym session. It isn't something I would be happy to drink outwith the gym and even when I am out doing long walks, I much prefer water or Lucozade Sport.
*~*So, How Does It Perform?*~*
Drinking some of this prior to jumping on the cardio machines helped a great deal. It is hard to describe the feeling but it is like something is opening up my lungs and creating a fresh feeling inside me. With water, I get lazy and light headed as the pace picks up on the machines. With Powerade, there seems to be a mental and physical boost to my body which pushes me forward to perform for longer at the pace I should be aiming for in order to burn the calories. 10mins on the treadmill for example, can be carried out with ease. Drinking water, I am slowing down and taking small sips 3-4times in the space of the 10min period. Powerade allows me to take a drink prior, once during and then afterwards boosting my stability and allowing me to carry on to the next bit of my programme.
I'm not saying that it is a miracle worker that keeps me awake most of the day as its not. I normally go to the gym in the evening as I find although I am tired from running around after my son all day, I need to tire myself out more. Without a good sports drink, I wouldn't be able to go from the weights to the cardio without sitting for a good 10 or 20mins. If I do that, then I don't want to do anything else except go home! The boost that Powerade gives me is temporary allowing me to complete my workout to the best of my ability and not affect my bedtime routine later that night.
Leaving the gym, I feel fresher and more alert than what I would have had I just drunk water during my workout. I am quite lucky as my gym has Powerade readily available in the vending machine. It is provided ice cold which allows it to be refreshing. By the time I leave the gym, due to handling the bottle in the gym, the drink tends to go warm and subsequently tastes even more horrible and chemical like that it is cold. Not very nice and resulting in the bottle being thrown in the recycling bin. No matter how many times I washed this and refilled with water, there was a weird aftertaste so I wouldn't recommend using for refills of anything.
Me personally, I am not fussed with sweeteners and don't usually pay much attention to specific ingredients. The energy boost created from this drink is mainly down to the sugar content. I wouldn't have guessed that based on taste alone as it is no where near as sweet as Lucozade Sport. One bottle contains 20% of my daily sugar intake which is quite frightening. To that effect, I am considering trying the sugar free version. Sugar gives short term energy boosts so I am unsure how the sugar free version will perform and if it could match the full sugar version but only time and trying will tell.
I notice a lot of people constantly drinking these sports drinks to increase their performance. Personally, I don't feel you can rely on them and they can become addictive more than helpful. I went through a phase of being addicted to Lucozade Sport and actually craved it but now I am careful as I don't want my body to get too used to the ingredients. I only buy it occasionally when at the gym.
*~*Comparrison With Other Brands*~*
I find Lucozade Sport much more drinkable and there are nicer flavours available. It is higher in calories and more sugar per 500ml than Powerade. Performance wise, I find Powerade more effective and longer lasting. Another competitor I have tried is the Asda own brand simpled labeled Isotonic Sports Drink Orange. At 50p per bottle or 4 x 500ml for £1.50 it is more affordable. I personally find this one tasty to drink. It isn't as strong due to less sugar content and is more suited to lighter exercise such as walking for a gentle energy boost.
*~*Recommendation and Conclusion*~*
Powerade Orange isn't my favourite sports drink but comes in at an acceptable level. The bottle is convenient for my gym needs, the taste of the drink isn't as nice as many sports drinks but gets my mind and body focussed and alert for my workout. Personally I consider all of the branded sports drinks overpriced and I currently fork out £1.50 for one bottle from the vending machine. I don't buy multi packs as my fiance would nick them all for daily drinking! He has personally tried this but finds Lucozade Sport much more effective for playing weekly football with his work and sticks with that.
I recommend Powerade Orange for those of you who go to the gym and need that boost to get through your session whilst keeping your body hydrated.
Thanks for reading :)
My new years resolution this year was to get fit so I started to go to the gym three times a week. My initial enthusiasm and good intentions have worn off slightly but I am still managing to work out at least once or twice a week. I like to do cardio work to build up my general fitness levels and lose weight so generally use the treadmill, bikes and cross trainer for the bulk of my session and use the weights machines for 10 to 15 minutes to help tone my muscles. All of this exercise is thirsty work and I have experimented with different sports drinks over the past few weeks instead of just drinking water.
What Is Powerade?
Powerade is an isotonic sports drink which is made by the massive world dominating Coca Cola company. It comes in various flavours including an alarmingly blue tropical flavour and orange which I am focusing on today. A 500ml bottle generally costs around £1.20 from shops and vending machines, my local Co-Op has an offer on all Coca Cola drinks where you can buy two bottles for £1.80 and a four pack cost me £3.50. Powerade is the official sports drink of team GB for the 2012 Olympics and also carries the logo of The Football League and England Rugby; whether this endorsement comes simply because they have thrown massive amounts of money at these sporting bodies or because the athletes genuinely use Powerade I don't know.
Why Not Water?
It is important to make sure that you are properly hydrated while you are exercising, if you do not replace the fluid lost through sweat the your performance soon becomes impaired and if you became severely dehydrated by losing 10% of your body weight then you can suffer from heat stroke. Sweat also contains salt and minerals and Powerade contains sodium, potassium, magnesium and calcium as well as glucose to give your muscles an energy boost.
What Is In Powerade
I'm not going to bore you with an ingredients list but simply comment on the most important parts of Powerade. A 250ml serving (half a bottle) contains 0.25g of sodium, 25mg of Potassium and 24.5g of carbohydrate which comes from glucose and maltodextrin. The levels of magnesium and calcium contained in the drink are not given, I am assuming that this is because they are really low. The drink also contains aspartame and acesulphame K which are artificial sweeteners and there is a warning that these contain a source of Phenylalinine which can have a laxative effect. Half a bottle will give you 53 calories and 0.3g of salt so those who are worried about their sodium levels should give Powerade a miss.
Potassium is useful in sports drinks because it helps in muscle contraction. The RDA of Potassium in the UK is 3500mg so whether the paltry 50mg contained in a full bottle of Powerade will make much of an impact is debatable. The sodium helps to combat general dehydration but people need to be careful not to overdo it and take in too much as this can raise your blood pressure and cause other problems.
My Experience Of Orange Powerade
Like I said previously I have experimented with different energy drinks and water when I am working out to see which I think works best for me. Orange Powerade tastes truly foul; it's like orange squash which has been watered down too much with a slight salty taste. It also makes my mouth feel dry and has a nasty aftertaste which doesn't really encourage me to drink it in large quantities. I've tried other flavours of Powerade and the tropical and raspberry are both far nicer than the orange. The fact that it comes in a squeezy plastic bottle with a sports top makes it easy to drink during exercise.
When I last went to the gym I drank water and I ended up sweating like a pig and I don't find that I sweat as much when I drink Powerade. I'm really unsure whether it makes any real difference to my energy levels when I am working out or if it allows me to do more, to be honest I really don't think it really makes much difference. I think what I have eaten that day makes more of a difference and I try to eat around an hour before I work out.
The one difference that I seem to notice is that I am always really thirsty after my session when I have been drinking Powerade and I end up filling the empty bottle with water and gulping it down, I think this is because of the sodium making me thirstier.
I am not really convinced that Powerade orange makes enough of a difference to my hydration or energy levels during my workouts to make it is a worthwhile investment. I don't like the fact that drinking a 500ml bottle of Powerade gives me 106 calories or the fact that I am ingesting artificial sweeteners. It is also expensive; filing a sports bottle with the chilled water my gym provides is free.
I have done some research into sports drinks in general and discovered that isotonic drinks such as Powerade orange are designed for people engaged in heavy exercise over a prolonged period of time such as marathon runners; people like me who simply work out for 40 minutes or so are better off with a low sugar hypotonic sports drink such as Powerade sugar free or Lucozade hydroactive.
Powerade is an expensive way to get some fluid inside you when you are working out; it is possible to make your own isotonic sports drink by adding a pinch of salt to a drink made of 200ml of full sugar orange squash diluted with 800ml of water. This is obviously a lot cheaper than buying bottled sports drinks from the vending machine at the gym and will also not contain artificial sweeteners. If you are worried about your salt levels you can have a salty snack like a handful of peanuts before you start working out.
If you are engaged in very heavy exercise then it is worth trying Powerade but if, like me, you are working out in an air conditioned gym for a short time then water works just as well to keep you hydrated.