Vitamin Water: As Good for You as it Sounds?
I am definitely someone who loves a good debate, even a good heated debate from time to time; but I have to say I was a little taken back by the ferocity of the debate that is going on about Vitamin Water. A debate that questions whether it has any merit as a source of vitamins, electrolytes and healthy hydration. Whether the company is immoral for promoting it as a healthy product, or whether it is as unhealthy as diet pop.
I am also a firm believer, that at the end of the day we are each the master of our own universe. To clarify, what I mean is that it is up to us as individuals to seek out the information in order to make sound decisions. In my opinion, people are too quick to lay blame or responsibility for their lives and their disappointments on anyone but themselves. Yes I agree, it is disheartening to be misled, misinformed and even lied to, but quite often I believe that people choose to believe what they want in order to make life simpler. Like thinking that drinking a bottle of Vitamin Water really will make up for a diet of McDonald’s, missing the gym, or not getting enough sleep. I am pretty confident that deep down people know that this is not the case, but that they choose to block out the sugar content, the lack of juice, general artificiality of the drink because it makes them feel good to be drinking a “healthy looking” beverage.
Now before the pro Vitamin Water people get all up in arms, I drink it and I like it. But I don’t drink it all the time and it doesn’t replace the real deal, H2O.Â This drink in particular has 33 grams of sugar, so if you are watching your daily sugar content then this may not be the best choice for you. However, if you are an athlete who burns calories like crazy then perhaps the number of calories or sugar content is not a concern for you. That being said, there are much better ways to replenish your glycogen stores and get a boost pre or post work out, like protein shakes made with papaya, berries or banana. All of which are naturally loaded with tons of vitamins, minerals, electrolytes and anti oxidants that your body needs, especially after an intense workout. If you are looking for a pre-workout boost or a drink to carry you through I recommend Vega Optimizer, which contains natural vegan ingredients. As I mentioned previously, as an individual it is of course up to you what you eat, drink and how you choose to live.
I am going to assume that if you are drinking Vitamin Water then you are a somewhat health conscious individual, and therefore you should know before you open your next bottle of XXX or Defense, that each bottle contains 3 servings. So multiply everything listed in the nutritional facts to get the real numbers. In each bottle there is 33 grams of sugar and to put that into perspective, a can of Coca Cola has 39 grams. Crazy right? The sugar is crystalline fructose, which is fructose crystallized in corn syrup and this is definitely not a good thing. The more processed and altered your food is the worse it is for you. This sugar goes directly into your blood stream causing an insulin spike, which will disrupt your metabolism, decrease your immune system and in the end just lead to sugar cravings. The sugar content was alarming, but wait until I tell you about the Natural Flavors. Natural Flavors are chemicals that are added to products to give them taste. They are what make berry flavor taste like berry, strawberry taste like strawberry, and so on. It is not required by the FDA to list what these chemicals are so you really have no idea what you are putting in your body. Scary thought.
My message here is simply that it is up to you as a consumer to do the research, ask questions, and make your decisions based on sound information. As a business it is their objective to sell their product and make money, which is done by clever marketing, clever names and cute packaging. This does not mean however, that you have to blindly believe what they are telling you. If you own an iphone or Blackberry phone you can even Google a particular item or ingredient while you are in the grocery store. If that seems like too much trouble, then here are some simple tips: choose high-grade meats, fish and poultry, organic fresh vegetables. Lastly, if you can’t pronounce it you probably shouldn’t be eating it. Nobody can be perfect all of the time with what they put into their bodies, but you can make better decisions by a few simple clicks of the mouse.
This article was written by guest contributor Nicole Salvian, who is a Personal Trainer in Vancouver, B.C. It was after using proper nutrition and working to rehabilitate herself after a serious car accident that led to the choice of making holistic health a priority in her life. Being healthy and strong has allowed her to take her life back and she hopes to help others do the same.