Let's be honest. There are times when a bottle of water simply won't cut it. You want something unhealthy from the beverage cart. But not all bad beverages are all that bad. If you're undecided, here is the tale of the tape on three choices you can make and still sleep at night.
Gatorade G2/Powerade Zero:__ The reduction in calories (Gatorade has 30 per 12 ounces/Powerade has 0) when compared to the original products is why they make the list. We'll overlook the inclusion of several chemicals and sucralose, a sugar substitute that many think might pose a health risk. Sports drinks claim to help you hydrate fast, but water is still the heavyweight champion in that department. Neither is a significant source of nutrition, but Powerade does claim that its drink has been fortified with B vitamins.__
Light beers from Budweiser/Coors/Miller:__ Yep, alcohol makes the list! The most calories in any of these three beers is Bud Light at 110. Not bad. And 6.6 grams of carbohydrates per 12-ounce serving is pretty good, too. I won't get into all the claims of health benefits from beer, but downing a pint or two has been linked to everything from stronger bones to better heart function. Believe what you want, and pass another over this way.
__NEVER ORDER: Cranberry juice. Surprised? Without mentioning any specific brands, a 12-ounce bottle of cranberry juice has roughly 42 grams of sugar! That's more than a can of regular cola. What's even more alarming is the fact that cranberries contain healthy dietary fiber. How much of that is in the juice? Nada.
Ron Kaspriske is the fitness editor of Golf Digest.
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