Gone Gatorade Gone
Gatorade, a sports beverage used to re-hydrate athletes, can have serious health consequences. Recently, Hebrew Academy had a pediatric endocrinologist come speak to a group of parents during a morning Learn and Latte session. While he had other interesting and important information about our children’s nutrition, one of the things he focused on was the overuse and consequences of these sports drinks.
Probably the most common consequences of drinking too much Gatorade is weight gain. A 32 ounce bottle of Gatorade has 200 calories. Most of our students drink the sports drinks with lunch and snack and not for the intended use of re-hydration after sports. If our kids are not burning the calories, the excess calories are stored as fat, which will eventually lead to the weight gain.
The National Institute of Health also states these sports drinks can lead to vitamin toxicity or an overload of Vitamin A. The symptoms of this can include fatigue, headaches, and nausea. In addition to this, 1 bottle has 800 mg of sodium and a whopping 56 grams of sugar. No one should be drinking that much sugar, sodium, calories, and those unhealthy dyes in one sitting. And yet I see students drinking them on a daily basis. Per our speaker, this much sugar gives a huge jolt to the liver, causing long term consequences.
Based on all this information, we have decided to be pro-active and remove all the sports drinks and any other sugary beverage from our vending machines. We are working with On the Go Vending to see what we can provide, other than water, which will provide a healthy alternative for our students. We also request parents not send sports drinks or soda to school with your children. Let’s all try to stick to the best hydration beverage of all…..WATER.
Nurse Lynn Friedman, RN