As a professional health coach concerned with the health and well-being of my clients it is my intention to improve your well-being and longevity by using the principles of nutrition, fitness, diet, lifestyle dynamics, and anti-aging medicine.
Together you and I will work as a team to accomplish all of your health needs and to ensure that you practice prevention and live your life through the lens of quality.
Remember….your quality of life is the measurement of successful living regardless of your age.
Dr. Kevin. J. McLaughlin
Clinical Director: The Vitality Project
Sports replenishment drinks have been consumed for decades by athletes to re-hydrate, provide needed extra energy and electrolytes from lost sweat. I my opinion, there is a place for these types of drinks as their use can help athletes who compete in very long distances deal with the increased demands which are placed upon the body. However, these drinks can also contain high amounts of sugar and calories which may not be necessary for athletic activity and may be harmful in specific cases. Sport drinks are designed to do different things at different times. Some contain mostly electrolytes, water and fruit juice extracts. These can be used as a manner in which to hydrate before and during an outdoor activity that involves longer distances and very warm conditions. In this circumstance, I can see the value in this type of drink. The problem is; I also see these drinks being used by much younger people for athletic events like hockey and soccer where water is quite adequate.
Other sports, replenishment drinks which contain various amounts of sugars and proteins can be utilized after strenuous, prolonged activity to replenish your muscles with needed nutrients for recovery. Unless, you are an accomplished athlete competing or training at a higher level the proper meal after your exercise session will suffice. In addition to this point, some sports replenishment drinks can be sold in large serving sizes which can also mean higher amounts of sugar and calories consumed. Any type of drink which contains sugar, glucose, fructose, corn syrup, maltodextrins and maltose can potentially lead to weight-gain and contribute to obesity in any age group. I have seen overweight children and adults drinking these products in the gym or jogging outside, in this case the consumption of these drinks is not appropriate. Although these drinks are marketed for all ages, in my opinion, their use as an ergogenic aid should only be specifically applied to unique circumstances as previously described.
There are also other energy-type drinks containing high amounts of caffeine and herbal extracts which are purported to improve concentration and energy. There is no doubt that caffeine and herbs can be very helpful compounds to increase concentration and energy. However, you can realize the same benefit by drinking 1-2 cups of coffee and taking a daily herbal adaptogen at less of a cost.
I have no real problem with adults spending their money on products that may have questionable value under certain circumstances. I do have a problem with younger individuals who regularly consume these types of energy drinks. There have been many reports regarding the increased consumption of high caffeine drinks in school-aged individuals. In my view, younger folks really have no need to ingest caffeine from any source!
In addition, the use of energy drinks in this age group, has been linked with many different reports indicating various adverse side-effects. For these reasons, I do not advocate the use of these drinks in people of this age group. Although they purport to improve alertness, they can have the opposite effect by causing insomnia in those younger folk who cannot handle the total caffeine load which are consumed on a daily basis.