I was disappointed to read in The Tribune on Oct. 18 about SLO teens loading up on soda and sports drinks. More disappointing was that our public schools nixed sodas on campus, but have kept Gatorade (a PepsiCo product), touting the claims that Gatorade and other sports drinks are good for you because they are “electrolyte replacement beverages.”
Score one for PepsiCo. Its soda products have been removed, but it has found a replacement cash cow, the “sports drink.” PepsiCo has spent millions of marketing dollars to convince us that “sports drinks” are healthy, and our public schools have bought into these claims.
Gatorade and other sports drinks are filled with sugar, chemicals and artificial dyes. Not only are the added “electrolytes” a small fraction of this unhealthy product, supplemental electrolytes are not necessary for the daily activities of the average student or professional, or during an average fitness program.
Our public schools need to say no to “sports drinks,” and the corporations selling them. Let’s see them for what they are: wolves in sheep’s clothing. We need to do this. We must do this, for the sake of our kids and ourselves.