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Can Drinking Gatorade Affect My Blood Sugar Level?

by
author image Tara Kimball
Tara Kimball is a former accounting professional with more than 10 years of experience in corporate finance and small business accounting. She has also worked in desktop support and network management. Her articles have appeared in various online publications.
Can Drinking Gatorade Affect My Blood Sugar Level?
A woman is holding two sports drink bottles. Photo Credit Tinatin1/iStock/Getty Images

Gatorade is a blend of electrolytes and carbohydrates designed to protect you from dehydration. Gatorade was created in an effort to help the Florida Gators reduce heat exhaustion and illness on the field. The blend of chloride, sodium and potassium are essential nutrients, according to the dietary guidelines released by the United States Department of Health and Human Services. Know how Gatorade affects your blood glucose readings before adding it to your diet.

Carbohydrate Content

An 8-oz. serving of Gatorade's traditional Perform blend contains 14g of carbohydrates, all from sugar. Gatorade Prime contains 25g of carbs per serving. The Low-Calorie line of Gatorade drinks have only 5g of carbohydrates per serving. The carbohydrate content in Gatorade drinks is solely from sugar.

Blood Sugar Impact

The carbohydrate content in Gatorade will cause an increase in blood sugar readings. Carbohydrates are created from starch and sugar. When your body processes the carbohydrates in the Gatorade, it breaks down into glucose. The glucose is delivered to your body's cells to use as an energy source. Glucose absorbs into your blood stream, creating an increase in your blood glucose, which is literally a representation of the glucose saturation in your blood.

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Other Factors

If you consume Gatorade during physical activity, your exercise level may decrease your blood glucose, negating or reducing the blood sugar increase. Alternatively, exercising when your blood glucose drops too low can cause an opposite reaction if your body produces a large amount of sugar in response. The added sugar plus the Gatorade may create a substantial blood glucose increase.

Considerations

Consult your doctor if you exhibit increased blood sugar results or have concerns about your blood sugar. Your doctor can help you determine the cause and best treatment plan if your blood sugar warrants it. Prolonged increased blood sugar can result in frequent urination, putting you at risk for dehydration. Gatorade may help reduce the dehydration risk if added to your diet in moderation.

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