Many people choose Powerade Zero as an occasional replacement to the bland taste of water. Why shouldn’t they? It’s a healthier alternative.
The drink’s free of sugar has no calories, and is fortified with electrolytes and B vitamins; add those benefits to Powerade Zero’s delicious flavors and you have a perfect substitute to water.
But wait: is Powerade Zero Keto-friendly? Let’s start with the basics.
What Is Keto and How Can Powerade Zero Fit in This Type of Diet?
Obesity continues to be a perennial problem, and many people will try anything just to lose weight as many people drink Powerade Zero.
The Keto diet has become quite popular as it claims to make you lose excess weight quickly. It is one with low carb, high fat, and moderate-protein content (1). The diet limits your carbohydrate consumption from 20 to up to 50g per day only.
Let’s take a look at what makes up this drink. At first glance, it seems that the ingredients of the drink are safe:
- Zero calories per serving
- No fat content
- Cholesterol – 0mg
- Protein – 0g
- Sodium – 250mg
- Potassium – 35mg
- Carbohydrates – less than 1g
This is obviously a low-carb drink; hence, it can be considered appropriate to be a part of your keto diet regimen.
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The Carb Content of Powerade Zero
But where does the sugary flavor of the drink come from?
As we all know, a gram of table sugar contains one gram of carbohydrate.
Fortunately, for Powerade Zero, it does not contain refined sugar, which may cause diabetes if used excessively. Instead, Powerade Zero contains sugar substitutes.
There are two artificial sweeteners used in Powerade:
- Sucralose – contains zero calories. It is commonly used as a sugar substitute in baking and cooking. Splenda is the most popular sucralose-based artificial sweetener. The total calories and carbohydrates sucralose contains are negligible.
- Acesulfame K – gives a sweet taste without increasing glycemic response; no high caloric sugar content
It is safe to say that Acesulfame K provides the “less than 1g” carb reflected in the label.
Minerals in Powerade Zero
What about the mineral content (i.e., sodium and potassium) of the drink?
Powerade Zero refreshing drinks contain two minerals in considerable amounts, namely sodium and potassium. When minerals enter the body and dissolve in the blood, they become electrolytes.
Electrolytes in the blood – potassium, sodium, bicarbonate, and chloride – help in maintaining water balance and acid-base balance. Electrolytes also help to keep your nerves and muscles functioning accordingly (2).
The average American consumes 3400 mg of sodium per day. Compare that to the limit set by the American Heart Association, which is less than 1500 mg.
For proper bodily functions, all a person needs is just a tiny amount of 200 mg.
There is no doubt our low-carb can definitely sustain the body’s daily requirement with its 250 mg sodium content.
But there’s a catch which has something to do with how the body responds to the Keto diet.
When carb intake is drastically decreased, blood insulin levels also decrease. This, in turn, causes the body to lose large amounts of sodium.
How to Replenish
If you are experiencing fatigue, weakness, headache, loss of concentration, insomnia, impaired memory, or muscle pain – symptoms of sodium depletion (3) – increasing sodium intake might be a solution.
What you can do:
- Increase your salt intake – a teaspoon of salt provides 2.5g of sodium.
- Drink bouillon or broth – get 1g of sodium per cup.
- Drink Keto-friendly sodium-rich drinks like Powerade Zero when working out or sweating a lot.
Is the 35mg of potassium enough for our daily needs?
Barely – considering that we need 3500mg per day and considering further that those who need it more should consume at least 4700mg.
Powerade Zero can not meet this particular need.
Here’s a problem which confronts the average American today: About 98% of them don’t meet the daily requirement (4).
People who lack potassium can suffer from muscle cramps, twitch, or weakness. They may also develop abnormal heart rhythms. Worst, they can become paralyzed.
Notes for Keto dieters:
Symptoms of Keto-induction or the Keto-flu include rashes, fatigue, diarrhea, muscle cramps, halitosis, headache, and constipation.
These are common symptoms of low electrolytes in the blood in response to lowered insulin levels.
When insulin is low, the body releases more sodium, potassium, and water via the urine (5).
How to Replenish or Maintain the Right Level
Increase water intake; that’s a basic requirement for keto dieters. Take note that carbohydrates hold water and sodium in the body.
When carbohydrate is restricted, these elements can easily be excreted, resulting in water dehydration.
With regard to potassium, maintain the right level with these Keto-friendly foods:
- Eat salmon (415mg),
- sardines (400mg),
- beef (310mg),
- zucchini/squash (260mg),
- mushrooms (370mg), cauliflower (300mg),
- avocado (240mg), broccoli (315mg),
- and spinach (550mg).
All numbers represent the given milligrams per 200 grams of the item.
One more mineral in the drink is magnesium, which is included with a very low concentration (only 1 mg).
- Magnesium is essential to 300 biochemical processes in the body
- Helps in maintaining muscle and nerve function
- Supports the immune system
- Keeps the beating of the heart steady
- Keeps bone strong and healthy
- Helps regulate sugar levels in the blood
The body needs at least 310mg of magnesium daily. However, for the most part, magnesium-rich foods are high in carbs.
For Keto dieters, it is recommended to take a daily supplement of 200-400mg. Some supplement options are magnesium citrate, magnesium gluconate, and magnesium glycinate.
You still have good Keto-friendly food options for this mineral:
- Pumpkin seeds
- Swiss chard
The B Vitamins in Powerade Zero
The B vitamins in the drink come in the following quantity:
- Vitamin B3 – 25% of RDA
- Vitamin B6 – 25% of RDA
- Vitamin B12 – 25% of RDA
Surely, these are significant amounts that can help you if you are suffering from any disease and symptoms related to the lack of these vitamins. These diseases include:
- Pellagra with symptoms inflamed skin, diarrhea, dementia, and mouth sores (lack of Vitamin B3).
- Immune function issues: For immune malfunctions, the associated problems are decreased production of antibodies required for fighting infections, and reduction in the production of white blood cells (lack of Vitamin 6).
- Weakness and fatigue resulting from the body’s inability to produce red blood cells, which transport oxygen throughout the body (lack of B12).
More Keto Diet Health Benefits
Experts say the kind of diet Keto is offering vast amounts of health benefits.
For example, it can help in shedding extra weight (6). The study also found that, in comparison to low-fat diets, Keto diets result in better cardiovascular risk factor management.
Other health conditions that may benefit from Keto diets include:
- Epilepsy – Due to its being low in carbohydrates and high in fat, it has been suggested that it can be good for reducing frequency; currently in use for children with seizures (10)
- Alzheimer’s disease and Parkinson’s disease – Single studies with human participants, suggest that the diet can reduce Alzheimer’s symptoms (11, 12).
- Cancer – The Ketogenic diet has been proposed as an adjuvant therapy among cancer patients (13).
- Brain Injury – The diet can enhance recovery after Traumatic Brain Injury (14)
Keto-Friendly Low Carb Food
While you are on a Keto diet, limit your carb consumption to 20 – 50 grams per day. While the requirement is tough, many healthy low carb foods can help you deliver.
- Dark Chocolate – Unsweetened chocolate is most Keto-friendly. Next, dark chocolate with high cacao content. Each of these types has up to only 10 grams of carb per ounce of serving.
- Shirataki Noodles – a fantastic addition to your Keto diet. These are mainly water and contain only 1g carb and five calories per serving.
- Butter and cream – These are good additions as well, as they contain only trace amounts of carbs.
- Berries – high in fiber and low in carbs; blackberries, raspberries, and strawberries contain only 5g, 6g, 6g net carb, respectively.
- Eggs – a large one contains only less than a gram of carb
- Meat and poultry – no carb content
- Avocado – net carb count is only 2g
- Non–starchy vegetables – Net carb ranges from 1–8g per cup
- Cheese – 28g of cheddar cheese gives out only a gram of carb. However, it provides 7g of protein and about 20% of the RDA for Calcium.
Will Powerade Zero Knock You Out of Your Ketosis?
With its sugar-free and zero-calorie formulation, the Powerade Zero drink will surely not get you out of your low carb bound.
Instead, it can support you all the way to your Keto-inspired health goals.
The minerals and the B vitamins that it contains can help you ward off diseases and their symptoms.
Make sure that you incorporate in your meals the many nutritious Keto food alternatives we’ve included here.
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