Reader Laura Comment:
I have to admit that I was surprised to see how much sugar was in this “health” drink. It seems that Vitamin Water actually has 5 teaspoons of sugar per bottle. I have had this water after a workout thinking it was better for me than other drinks. With obesity becoming an epidemic it’s sad to see the hidden sugar in items being pushed as healthy./p>
It is the second time in little over a year that the firm has been censured for claims about health-giving properties of the drink, which contains 23g of sugar per half-litre bottle. It comes in eight ‘give-health-a-big-kiss’ varieties with names like Spark, Defense and Power-C, in flavours such as ‘apple-kiwi’ and ‘tropical citrus’, even though they do not contain any fruit. The Advertising Standards Authority yesterday ruled that consumers ‘would not expect a “nutritious” drink to have the equivalent of four or five teaspoons of added sugar’. Coca-Cola had argued the sugar level was within the range of a low-calorie drink, while vitamin content, such as a daily dose of vitamin C, meant it could be considered healthy. But the ASA banned it from using the word ‘nutritious’ in future ad campaigns.
Everything is relative. While I wouldn’t call Vitamin Water “healthy, it is less unhealthy than Coca-Cola. On the sugar content, look at these comparables:
7Up = 39 grams
Coca-Cola Classic = 39 grams
Dr Pepper = 40 grams
Minute Maid Orange Soda = 48 grams
Mountain Dew = 46 grams
Pepsi = 41 grams
Sprite = 38 grams
This is compared to a bottle of Vitamin Water at 23 grams. On the subject of obesity, drinks with sugar don’t make us obese unless we drink a ton of them. Quantity management and lack of exercise are the main culprits in the epidemic of obesity.
If you want a “healthy” drink after you work out, I would suggest water or an electrolyte / protein supplement.
John Di Saia MD
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