Healthy Energy Drinks? or Just 'Gut-Fattening' Scams

HOW TO LOSE BELLY FAT Contribution By Mike Geary (Page 2)

Today I'll have a little rant on energy drinks...

I always receive lots of questions about all of these new "energy" drinks that have hit the market over the last few years. They seem to be all the rage and they make such outrageous claims...

So a few questions arise:

- Are these "energy" drinks any good for you?
- Do they actually increase your energy?
- Do they really have some special energy formula?
- Will they help you lose weight?

First, let's have a look at what most of these energy drinks are usually made of. Most of them are simply carbonated water loaded with gut-fattening high fructose corn syrup (or other added sugars), caffeine, the amino acid taurine, and some artificially-derived vitamins added for show to trick you into thinking that these concoctions are healthy!

Loaded With Sugars

Let's start with the high fructose corn syrup (HFCS). Well, here we've got empty calories that will go straight to your belly fat, and are possibly even WORSE for you than plain refined sugar (although that's up for debate). Some energy drinks use other added sugars instead of HFCS, but it doesn't really matter, because they are all gut-fattening empty calories with no nutritional benefit.

Ok, so you say that they also have low-sugar or sugar-free varieties as an alternative to the HFCS-laden energy drinks. Yes, but now you have the problem of the harmful chemicals in the artificial sweeteners which have their own set of health dangers.

I won't go into all the details on that topic because that would fill up an entire discussion by itself... Just trust me that artificial sweeteners and artificial chemicals in food in general, are ALL bad news for your body!

What about the caffeine?

Well, first of all, caffeine doesn't in itself provide "energy". Technically, the only substance that actually provides energy are calories (from carbs, protein, and fat).

However, caffeine can be an aid for livening-up or waking-up some people, by means of stimulating the central nervous system.

Personally, I'd rather get my caffeine from a natural source like green, white, or oolong teas (or my new favorite - yerba mate teas), which also provide very powerful and healthy antioxidants!

Keep in mind though, if you're a regular daily coffee drinker then you wouldn't receive too much benefit from the caffeine in an energy drink anyway.

Tip: try to drink more tea and reduce your coffee intake to reduce your dependency on caffeine. Most teas contain much less caffeine than coffee.

Some teas (such as green, white, and oolong) contain synergistic phytochemicals that work to slow the response of the caffeine that they do contain. This means you get a milder response from the caffeine in green, oolong, or white teas compared to the harsher jittery response that some people get from coffee.

What About The Added Vitamins?

Now what about that so called magical blend of taurine and B-vitamins that they load into these energy drinks?

Well, big deal... you get taurine in practically almost any protein source. And the vast majority of those artificially added B-vitamins are simply coming straight out into the toilet in your urine.

Vitamins are best obtained naturally from a REAL food source, not artificially added to some carbonated drink. Your body just doesn't use fake sources of vitamins as readily as natural sources from real food.

As you can see, in my opinion, I give all of these energy drinks a big THUMBS DOWN! Don't fall for the ridiculous marketing of all of these so-called "energy drinks".

My Own Home-Made Energy Drink

Instead, here's my recipe for my own home-made energy drink:

(1) Make a big iced tea mixture using green tea, white tea, and yerba mate tea. I also like to add a little fruit flavor, so I'll use 1 tea bag of a raspberry or blueberry hibiscus tea, and then use 2-3 green and/or white tea bags, and 2-3 yerba mate tea bags, and make a gallon container of iced tea. I just use a small amount of stevia to lightly sweeten the batch of tea.

(2) Buy a container of organic coconut water from a health food store, or buy fresh coconuts to obtain the coconut water inside.

(3) For my healthy energy drink, I mix half a glass of the white/green/yerba mate iced tea mixture and fill the rest of the glass with the coconut water.

This is actually a delicious and truly healthy energy drink instead of the chemical-laden energy drinks that everybody is getting fooled into buying these days.

The green, white, and yerba mate teas contain a small dose of caffeine along with a diverse mixture of powerful antioxidants and synergistic phytochemicals. Plus, the coconut water is a rich source of electrolytes a variety of vitamins and minerals.

Coconut water is known to provide a good instant energy source, and also contains a small dose of medium chain triglycerides (MCTs), which are healthy fats that are readily used for energy and also aid your immune system.

So enjoy this natural healthy energy drink, knowing that you're doing your body good instead of filling it with chemicals with store-bought energy drinks.

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