For a Paleo athlete (or any athlete) drinks like Gatorade, Powerade, etc are not a good option. Sure, they restore glycogen, but most are high carb or filled with questionable chemicals, or both!
Most of the time, plain water is all we need for good hydration, but those who compete in endurance sports or high intensity competitions (or have labors as long as mine!) occasionally need an electrolyte boost.
Even at these times, there are better options than conventional sports drinks. Gatorade, for instance, contains: Water, sucrose syrup, glucose-fructose syrup, citric acid, natural grape flavor with other natural flavors, salt, sodium citrate, monopotassium phosphate, red 40, Blue 1. (This is from a picture of the grape flavored Gatorade label.
If you ever compete in high intensity or endurance activities that sometimes require an some additional electrolytes, but want to avoid things like “sucrose syrup,” a homemade sports drink is easier, cheaper, and much, much, healthier.
This is also a good alternative to give your kids occasionally, as it has a lot of natural vitamins and minerals.
Natural Sports Drink Ingredients:
- One Quart (32 ounces) of liquid: herbal tea, coconut water or plain water. (I use nutrient dense Red Raspberry Leaf Tea brewed with Stevia for the natural vitamin boost)
- 1/8-1/4 teaspoon of Himalayan sea salt (regular salt will work, but doesn’t have the added trace minerals)
- 1/4-1/2 tsp calcium magnesium powder or crushed tablets
- 1/4 cup of juice (lemon, lime, grape, apple, etc)- optional
- 1 tsp sweetener (honey, stevia, etc) – optional – I brew stevia leaf into the tea so that no additional sweetener is needed.
How To Make Natural Sports Drink:
- Brew tea or slightly warm base liquid.
- Add sea salt and calcium magnesium powder and shake or stir to dissolve.
- Add juice and sweetener, if using.
- Cool and store in fridge until ready to use.
Note: The easiest way I’ve found to make this is in a quart size canning jar. Just add warm tea or liquid, pour in salt and cal/mag powder, put the lid on and shake well.
Other Natural Sports Drink Alternatives:
What’s your favorite natural sports drink? Or do you just stick to water? Weigh in below!