Powerade is a sports beverage that replenishes electrolytes, carbohydrates and vitamins during physical activity. Powerade beverage products include a variety of flavors and calorie contents. While Powerade is effective and replaces lost nutrients during exercise, it also contains high levels of sodium and sugar that are detrimental in excess.
Carbohydrates are your body’s main source of energy. As carbohydrates break down during digestion, they release glucose, or blood sugar, which is released into the blood stream and used to create a variety of substances that promote muscle contraction and nerve cell function. During intense and prolonged physical activity, your body’s store of glucose can become depleted, which can lead to physical exhaustion without replenishing. Powerade contains 14 g of carbohydrates.
Vitamins and Minerals
Powerade contains B-complex vitamins B-3, B-6 and B-12, all of which support energy metabolism. Based on a 2,000 calorie per day diet, Powerade contains 10 percent of your daily value of vitamins B-3, B-6 and B-12. Vitamin B-3 is associated with digestion and converting food into energy, vitamin B-6 is associated with red blood cell creation, which increases oxygen in your blood stream, and B-12 maintains red blood cell count.
Electrolytes are chemicals that regulate your body’s water and blood pH level. Since muscle consists heavily of water and nerves rely on proper blood pH, electrolyte imbalance can lead to dehydration, muscle fatigue, decreased efficiency during physical activity and, if serious enough, a host of dangerous health issues including heart failure. Powerade replenishes the four electrolytes commonly lost through sweat.
Powerade is high in sodium and sugar. If you do not regularly exercise, Powerade can cause weight gain and water retention. Consume 13.5 oz. of water during each hour of exercise, but be careful; too much water during exercise can cause a variety of health issues ranging from cramping to severe electrolyte imbalance.
- USDA National Nutrient Database: Beverages, COCA-COLA, POWERADE, Lemon-lime Flavored, Ready-to-drink
- University of Maryland Medical Center; Vitamin B-3 (Niacin); Steven D. Ehrlich; June 2009
- University of Maryland Medical Center; Vitamin B-6; Linda Vorvick; March 2009
- Office of Dietary Supplements: Vitamin B-12
- Med Line Plus; Electrolytes; David Dugdale; August 2009
- Athlete In Me; Sports Drinks and Recovery Drinks; Stan Reents; June 2011