Whether it’s for work, study, or play; everyone can use an extra boost of energy to help them get through a long day. Energy drinks are beverages formulated to provide energy through caffeine, vitamins, and other supplements. While conventional drinks like coffee and tea can play similar roles, energy drinks open up a new avenue of flavor profiles and functions for consumers.
Ingredients behind the Energy
While there are many different varieties, most energy drinks use variations of a simple energy formula consisting of vitamins, supplements, sweeteners, flavoring, and carbonated water. The primary source of energy is caffeine for its proven ability to boost energy. Caffeine elicits the fight-or-flight response in the body by blocking adenosine, a brain chemical related to sleep. When this occurs, neurons fire, and the pituitary gland releases adrenaline into the bloodstream. The heart beats faster, the eyes dilate, and the liver releases extra sugar into the bloodstream; the end result is an extra dose of energy. To capitalize on these effects, energy drinks are usually supplemented by B vitamins for their metabolism boosting properties. Herbs like ginseng and ginkgo are often added for their traditional roles in boosting concentration and focus. Other common ingredients include amino acids like taurine, which regulates heart beat and muscle contractions, and carnitine which plays a role in metabolizing fatty acids. Finally guarana extract, seen on the labels of energy drinks across the shelves is simply a bean native to South American high in caffeine.
Beverage formulation specialists like to experiment with different flavors, additives, and sweeteners to distinguish themselves from their competitors. Health concerns about consuming too much sugar or high fructose corn syrup has pressured some companies to opt for healthier natural alternatives like stevia or the monk fruit. These alternatives dramatically decrease the calories in energy drinks. Rich in antioxidants, super fruits like Açaí berries and mangosteen can add both new and exotic flavors and functions to energy drinks. Using fruit extracts can often hold hidden benefits like the resistant starch found in bananas which boosts the metabolism.
Vitamin Enhanced Water
Description: Vitamin enhanced water can provide a refreshing alternative to traditional supplements by delivering the vitamins the body needs in the form of a delicious beverage.
Water is a basic necessity of life; it plays a vital role in maintaining basic bodily functions, transporting nutrients and flushing out waste and toxins. Vitamins aid the body in everything from metabolism to the immune system. Staying hydrated and maintaining a balanced diet is therefore essential towards achieving a healthy lifestyle. Sometimes a person’s diet isn’t enough to get all the vitamins and minerals their body needs to maintain the chemistry of life. Vitamin enhanced water can provide a refreshing alternative to traditional supplements by delivering the vitamins the body needs in the form of a delicious beverage.
Vitamin enhanced water is typically composed of vitamins, water, and flavoring. Formulations typically include the beta complex vitamins B3, B5, B6, and B12 for their roles in metabolism. Vitamin C, is another popular choice for its immune system boosting properties and role in collagen production. These vitamins are water soluble and are flushed out of the body’s system on a daily basis, requiring daily replenishment. The fat soluble vitamins A, D, E, and K, are less common in vitamin waters because they are stored in fatty tissues for longer periods of time. Fat soluble vitamins are still included in formulas aimed at replacing multivitamin pills. In addition to vitamins, other supplements like calcium may be added to enhance the nutritional value of the beverage.
Flavorings and choice of sweetener can have an impact on how healthy vitamin enhanced water can be. While many offerings simply use sugar as a tried and true sweetener, natural alternatives like stevia and the monk fruit can cut back on the calories creating healthier beverages. Flavors and colorings can either be natural or artificial and are typically lighter on the palate than most beverages. In general, even the sugar offerings contain fewer calories than sodas, and make a fine flavorful alternative for the health conscious consumer.