Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Homemade Gatorade

Our kids think they’re Michael Jordan and need Gatorade at every single practice. Since at least one someone in my house is practicing every night, that much sports drink adds up. Plus it’s got all sorts of stuff in it that I can’t even pronounce. And it’s loaded with dyes, preservatives, unnecessary calories and high fructose corn syrup.

So I was just sending them to practice with water. Boom. Problem solved. Until I noticed they weren't actually drinking much of the water. Not the way they suck gown the sports drinks anyway.

When I picked AB up from a three-hour practice the other night I noticed she wasn't sweating. She was beet-red in the face but dry as a bone. I asked her how much water she’d had and she told me none. NONE. And trust me, it’s not because her coaches don’t give her ample opportunities to get water. She’s 10. She doesn't care about hydration.

Hmmmm. So I turned where every mother turns for parenting and health advice: the internet.

And guess what the internet said? She said I could make my own homemade electrolyte sports drink.

So I did.

And it is AMAZING!

The kids love it. It's crazy cheap to make. I know exactly what’s in it (and what’s not) AND a whole quart only has one tablespoon of sugar in it.


What they’re getting is mostly water that’s flavored with a little natural fruit juice and raw sugar that’s topped off with a pinch of salt. And that breaks down to this:
  • Citrus Juice – provides antioxidants, vitamin C, calcium, potassium, folate and vitamin A
  • Sugar – helps the body regulate cortisol which spikes during aerobic activity
  • Sea Salt – provides electrolytes and minerals and is a natural antihistamine
I wouldn't even begin to claim to be an expert on any of this. If you’d like to read more, please see this site and this site. I know honey or agave nectar would be better than sugar but I'm just not that cool. Yet.

What I do know for sure is that a huge bag of oranges costs less than half than a case of Gatorade, my kids are getting hydrated and we had fun making it! I made a gallon of this to put in the fridge and have been topping off everyone’s water bottles before each practice.

Homemade Gatorade sports drink made with just a few simple ingredients. Recipes for orange, cranberry, lemon-lime and ruby red grapefruit sports drink!

Orange Sports Drink (pictured)
makes 1 quart
1 cup fresh orange juice (juice from 3-4 oranges)
3 cups water
1 tablespoon sugar (or to taste)
1/4 teaspoon coarse-grain sea salt

Combine all ingredients and stir well. My crew was fine with just one tablespoon of sugar but feel free to add more to suit your taste. Cover and refrigerate up to one week.

Try these flavors also!

Cranberry Sports Drink
1 cup unsweetened cranberry juice
3 cups water
1-2 tablespoons sugar (or to taste)
1/4 teaspoon coarse-grain sea salt

Lemon-Lime Sports Drink
3/4 cup fresh lemon and/or lime juice
3 cups water
1-2 tablespoons sugar (or to taste)
1/4 teaspoon coarse-grain sea salt

Ruby Red Sports Drink
1 cup fresh ruby red grapefruit juice
3 cups water
1-2 tablespoons sugar (or to taste)
1/4 teaspoon coarse-grain sea salt


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