When straining your body through physical activity, Gatorade keeps your body hydrated, keeps the electrolytes balanced, and replenishes carbohydrates. However, Gatorade has several negative effects as well, which can be extremely toxic to the body. This very popular drink has both positive and negative effects that the consumer should be aware of. Proper hydration is a key aspect of keeping the body functioning at maximum efficiency. As the human body is composed mainly of water, one can imagine how necessary it is to maintain a proper balance of fluids. According to Dr. Katie Johnson, MD, 75% of Americans are chronically dehydrated. This means that Americans are not consuming enough fluids and their bodies could suffer long term effects, such as kidney failure or worse, coma. When preforming strenuous activities, fluids are rapidly lost through sweat and other bodily processes which can lead to dehydration. Gatorade was designed to quickly rehydrate the human body during these situations. The proper amount of electrolytes in the body keep it chemically balanced. Many normal bodily functions are dependent on electrolytes. According to www. dictionary. com electrolytes are any of certain inorganic compounds, mainly sodium, potassium, magnesium, calcium, chloride, and bicarbonate, that dissociate in biological fluids into ions capable of conducting electrical currents and constituting a major force in controlling fluid balance within the body. Whenever a person perspires, electrolytes escape from the body. If too much is lost, the body can’t function optimally. Gatorade is formulated to carefully provide the same electrolytes to keep the body hydrated, balanced, and working properly. The positive effects of Gatorade are clear, but what most do not know is that Gatorade can have just as many negative effects. Gatorade was designed with the athlete’s body in mind, but as any company knows, when the target market expands, the profits expand. With its multi-colored, variously flavored drink line, Gatorade appeals to more than just the athletic demographic. The sedentary lifestyle of many Americans is not compatible with the intended design of the drink, which can be harmful. The body is affected negatively when a person habitually ingests Gatorade without burning off the excess compounds. The result of this build-up can be fatal as the compounds may reach toxic levels. The amount of sugar in Gatorade has Public Health advocates pushing to ban it in school systems as there is as much as two-thirds the sugar of sodas, and more than three times the amount of sodium. In one 32oz bottle of Gatorade there are 56 grams of sugar and 440mg of sodium. There should be a clear separation between “healthy alternative” and “junk food”, but with Gatorade that line is more blurry than one would think. For the person with the active lifestyle Gatorade is an ideal drink. It replenishes the body and keeps the consumer healthy. If someone drinks Gatorade without working out it can be extremely dangerous and even potentially fatal. Gatorade was made with the athlete in mind, so remember this when consuming it.

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