What is Vitamin Water?
First, let's discuss Vitamin Water itself. Glaceau Vitamin Water is a beverage brand owned by The Coca-Cola Company. It is advertised as a pleasant-tasting hydrating drink that contains minerals and other nutrients that are beneficial for an individual's health. It has a variety of flavors and colors that have attractive names such as "focus," "revive," "energy," "essential," and many more.
The line of products has a variety of compositions and features a large number of flavors based on the fruit juice featured in the product with the promise to deliver on vitamins you need. The products are also arranged in different categories called first generation, second generation, third generation, and fourth generation. The products are also said to contain anywhere from 0-130 calories listed on each bottle.
Composition and different flavors
As mentioned before, there are a variety of flavors available for Vitamin Water available in the market. The most popular one is known as 'XXX'. It contains acai, blueberry, and pomegranate extract. The XXX represents the triple antioxidants that effectively remove free radicals in the body. It also contains 130 calories in one bottle and over 30 grams of added sugar (nearly half as much as a soft drink like Coca Cola).
Other rather popular flavors are: Mega C or the dragonfruit flavor; Multi-V Vitamin Water is lemonade flavored and contains zinc, which is involved in energy metabolism and tissue formation:; Orange flavored Essential contains calcium which, as we all know, is essential for bone and teeth development and maintenance.
The other flavors are; 'Energy,' which contains caffeine and is favored by tropical citrus, fruit punch flavored 'Restore' containing electrolytes, 'Focus' having vitamin A, Gut-C with fiber and apple cider vinegar, 'Recover-E,' which contains electrolytes and is blueberry flavored, and 'Serenity-E' with chamomile extract and selenium which comes in a melon hibiscus flavor.
All these flavors contain caffeine and sugar. There is another line known as VitaminWater zero that are low in calorie but sweetened with artificial sweetener such as stevia and erythritol.
The three products are; Orange flavored 'Rise' containing calcium, the sugar-free alternative of XXX called XOXOXO, and the sugar-free alternative of Multi-V, which is known as Squeezed and has the same nutrients and is the same flavor as Multi-V.
Where did Vitamin Water go wrong?
Vitamin Water was marketed as a unique formulation for people who need nutrients, vitamins, and energy on the get-go. It is said to be hydrating, refreshing, and a flavorful way to easily get your daily nutrients and a better alternative to energy drinks or classic sports drinks. The large variety of colors and flavors added to its appeal. Because now, the consumer was not only getting a sweet drink for the taste of it, it was supposed to be nutritious too.
However, soon after its widespread use, a debate regarding its health benefits was sparked. The question arose when it was realized that each flavor, apart from the flavors of the Vitamin Water zero line, contains exceptionally high amounts of sugar content. For example, the XXX acai, blueberry, and pomegranate flavor contain 32 grams of sugar per bottle. The same goes for Mega-C or the dragonfruit flavor.
The harmful effects of such high quantities of sugar in a single bottle outweigh the benefits Vitamin Water could provide. The benefits, too, are relatively minimal as each bottle contains low amounts of other nutrients. And most healthy adults can get these micronutrients like zinc and vitamins from their diet. If they cannot, the amount in one bottle is too low to make up for the deficiency, and multivitamins are the way to go instead.
Not only this, the quantity and the type of sugar vary in various countries. So in the US, the primary sweetener is crystalline fructose and sucrose, which are also listed as cane sugar. Many consider crystalline sugar to be more harmful to one's health than glucose as it is almost pure fructose- about 98%. Unfortunately, the level of fructose in Vitamin Water is nearly the same as that in Coke, which may derail health benefits.
The high levels of sugar predispose the user to many conditions. It is a vital risk factor for weight gain and can contribute to overall bad health. When there is a high quantity of sugar in your body, the body uses up some for metabolic activities and stores the rest. The storage of excess sugar is done in adipose tissue or fat. This means that excess sugars can lead to obesity.
It is also common knowledge that obesity and high sugar levels can lead to diabetes mellitus type 2. High blood levels of fat and sugar make cells resistant to insulin, a hormone essential in the cellular uptake of glucose. This cellular insulin resistance may then lead to type 2 diabetes. Not only that, but high sugar and fat levels are also associated with various other conditions. So to support good health, perhaps avoid excess consumption of Vitamin Water.
Healthier Alternatives to Vitamin Water
There are various alternatives available for Vitamin Water, which are nutritious and have lower sugar contents. Here are some excellent options for those looking for healthy and nutritious alternatives that give you the boost and essential vitamins you need.
- BioActive Multi - BioActive Multi by Healthycell is a delicious and easy-to-consume multivitamin formulation with all the important vitamins you need to support being your best self. These supplements are an excellent choice for anyone looking for cruelty-free, vegetarian, sustainably sourced, and pleasant-tasting multivitamins.
Each gel pack contains all the essential nutrients you need and can help avoid the hassle of taking multiple pills a day. It also contains much less sugar in each pack and more added vitamins than a bottle of Glaceu vitaminwater or a typical energy drink. It is a good option if a person has a vitamin deficiency or is just looking to support their overall health and long term wellness. BioActive Multi - BioActive Multi by Healthycell contains the equivalent of 5 daily multivitamin pills and studies have shown it has 265% more absorption than a typical pill or tablet.
- Green Tea - Green tea has been around for centuries in Asian countries. It is a popular beverage amongst people looking to lose weight or improve overall health. Green tea is high in antioxidants and low in calories, making it an exceptionally healthy drink. Add a splash of honey and a little lemon, and it becomes an enjoyable and nutritious beverage to wake you up and give you the caffeine boost you might need. You can also buy ultra-concentrated powdered green tea as Matcha.
- Kombucha - Kombucha is a trendy beverage in Korea, but it has only recently gained recognition in the west. It is a fermented and sweetened black or green tea with various juices or spices added for flavor. Since it is fermented, it contains yeast or bacteria. Due to this property, fermented drinks are very healthy for the gut. Kombucha contains probiotics, which help maintain the gut flora, i.e., the bacteria in your gut. These bacteria then assist in digestion and even produce vitamins. The drink itself also contains a large variety of vitamins and minerals and low amounts of sugar, making it one of the healthiest beverages found in the world. It not only provides you nutrition but can also open up your palate to new flavors and help you explore contemporary cuisine. I drink the Synergy brand Kombucha.
- Orange Juice - Orange juice is a staple breakfast item for many households worldwide. It is not only delicious and refreshing, but it also contains a wide variety of vitamins and minerals. It is filled with Vitamin C, essential for many metabolic processes. It also contains antioxidants that are very good for your skin. While many might see it as an everyday breakfast item, orange juice is one of the healthiest fruit juices due to its high nutritional value. If freshly squeezed, it also contains fiber that is important for gut health.
- Beetroot Juice - Beetroot is a vegetable that is not used very commonly in everyday cooking. However, beetroot juice is a go-to for many health enthusiasts. Beetroots are a great source of folic acid (Vitamin B9), magnesium, potassium, and many other micronutrients. These nutrients are known to improve cardiac health and improve blood flow to the brain. If you want a simple solution, Super Beets makes a great powdered option.
It is important that when trying to eat healthily and stay healthy, you are aware of the nutritional properties of the things that you consume. It is not advisable to start following a particular diet or using a specific product just because it is trending or has suddenly gotten popular. So, it is best to try to do your research and talk to the right professionals before choosing any products you want to use.