Sports versus energy drinks

Sports drinks:

What are they?

Sports drinks are a carbohydrate and electrolyte fluid designed to hydrate athletes quickly to replace losses through sweating, regulate body temperature, provide energy and improve performance.1 

What do they contain?

• Carbohydrates for energy and flavour. Research has found the ideal concentration of carbohydrate for maximum absorption from the small intestine is around 6g per 100mL.2 

• Electrolytes to replace sodium and potassium which are lost through sweating. Sodium aids fluid absorption and retention.3 Potassium is necessary for muscle contraction during activity.

• Other nutrients – may include minerals such as calcium and magnesium and antioxidant vitamins C and E.

Health effects

Sporting performance

When one kilogram of weight