Cons: So does tap water, which (usually) tastes better
I've never understood Gatorade, other than that it has clever marketing. If you peer at the baby section of your supermarket, you'll find that baby food manufacturers have started to come out with "baby" juices, and, of all the absurd things, bottled water that purports to be for babies.
So I take it the people who believe in baby water are not too far removed from the people who believe in sports beverages. There are undoubtedly some exceptions for serious athletes, but...but...
If it was really all that "thirst-quenching," it would be the first thing you reached for in the middle of the summer.
C'mon, think about that one for a bit. Nobody does. You come in from the heat, and you grab cold water, lemonade, Kool-Aid, soda pop, anything but; I have never seen anybody keep Gatorade on hand for heat-induced thirst, and that speaks volumes. It is mostly expensive sugar water with unusually unappealing flavours. The electrolytes are not really necessary for most people.
There are exceptions, which see the "serious" athletes I mentioned above, and hangover victims (though I prefer "Lucozade," which can be found in your local British import store), and sick people.
Some time back I landed myself in the hospital: I had spent the week expelling everything from both ends and was in rotten shape. I had a nice conversation with a friendly doctor while swaying back and forth. He excused himself, and came back with a new clipboard saying they were ready to admit me. Yikes. It seems enough dehydration causes doctors to turn evil and threaten intravenous fluids. I blanch at blood tests; an IV was unthinkable. Surely, I said, there was some little pill that could be prescribed to stem the loss of liquid, anything but a needle!
After some dickering, he offered that the next best thing would be for me to go back home and guzzle Gatorade, so long as I promised to report back if it didn't stay down. How very odd -- Gatorade? Yes: it was "Pedialyte" for children, and adults were told to drink Gatorade. I parried that it was rather unpleasant; he offered a worse alternative. Anybody who has gone around at Hallowe'en with a UNICEF collection box has noted the cheapness of "oral re-hydration salts" offered to people who would get Gatorade or Pedialyte, but have the misfortune to have been born in parts of the world without advertising. The alternative to Gatorade was a sort of first-world UNICEF solution; he offered a recipe of one part salt, one part...baking soda? and perhaps one other disgusting ingredient I've forgotten. It didn't stay down. Please, give generously to UNICEF: they probably don't flavour that in the third world.
I staggered off to the 7-11. I went through every available flavour (fairly limited at the time). "Lemon Ice" was marginally palatable, but that was it. I have never seen or heard an effective Gatorade advertisement, but somebody must have done a bang-up job at some point: a beverage that foul-tasting with few uses is widely sold -- mystifying!
Which brings me back to the start: I just don't understand. Gatorade seems more habit than anything else at sporting events. Few people can honestly claim to enjoy the taste -- note the run for the money given by more recent competitors like "Powerade." If you are sick, hungover, or very active, it might be worth it, but -- please, try the competition: among other problems, it is wildly overpriced for so unpleasant a beverage -- the IV certainly would have been cheaper next to all the "Lemon Ice" I swilled before I went back to normal.
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About the reviewer
K. Mennie (kmennie)
Oct 27, 2010
Nov 23, 2010 02:45 PM UTC
Great-tasting Gatorade Thirst Quencher is a scientific blend of water with what's been proven to be the optimal amount of carbohydrates and minerals to quench your thirst -- while quickly and efficiently putting back the fluids and minerals your body loses during working out or playing a game. Gatorade has no caffeine, carbonation or fruit juice... or anything else that would limit its amazing effectiveness.