Healthy Eating
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Apple-Butternut Chowder
Saved 8/17/07 to Healthy Eating

The Truth About Vitamin Water

This may be a touchy subject because I know how many avid Vitamin Water drinkers are out there, especially in our increasingly health-conscious (but misinformed) society. However, it's time to face the facts!

Vitamin Water gives the illusion of a healthy, hydrating, and rejuvenating miracle elixir. The bottles are beautiful, colorful, and the text on them is snappy and clever. They have empowering flavor names like "endurance," "energy," "essential," and "focus." There is no question that there is some genius marketing at hand.

However, nothing makes me cringe more than the sight of someone downing a bottle of "charge" or "balance" as though they are truly replenshing their body. The cold, hard truth is... Vitamin Water is fortified sugar water. Check the label yourself.

I went online to find the official nutrition info for Vitamin Water for this post. The Glaceau (company that owns Vitamin Water, Smart Water, and Fruit Water) website was beautiful and sleek, but of course did not offer any nutritional information. So, I found the information elsewhere after a good search. Let's take a look at "defense."

Nutrition Facts:
Serving Size 8 fl oz; Servings per Container 2.5
Calories 50
Total Fat 0g
Sodium 0mg
Total Carbohydrate 13g
Total Sugar 13g
Protein 0g
Vitamin C 60%; vitamin B3 10%; vitamin B6 10%; vitamin B12 10%; vitamin B5 10%, Zinc 10%

vapor distilled/deionized water, crystalline fructose, citric acid, vegetable juice (color), natural flavor, ascorbic acid (vitamin C), natural flavor, vitamin E acetate, magnesium lactate (elecrolyte), calcium lactate (electrolyte), zinc picolinate, monopotassium phosphate (electrolyte), niacin (B3), pantothenic acid (B5), pyridoxine hydrochloride (B6), cyanocobalamine (B12)

First, let me point out that this product contains NO juice. None. Now that we have that out of the way, let's factor in that one bottle of Vitamin Water is 2.5 servings, therefore, nutrional information should be adjusted accordingly (unless you're really only going to drink less than half of the bottle at at time). That makes one bottle of Vitamin Water contain 125 calories and 33 grams of sugar. (Remind me again why they try to call this a form of "water"?) That's more calories and sugar than a 12 ounce serving of Coke (12 oz of coke equates 110 calories and 30 grams of sugar). Now, Coke contains high fructose corn syrup and is not fortified, but nutritionally, you're still getting sugar and calories from both drinks.

And don't be enticed by "crystalline fructose," the second ingredient on the Vitamin Water ingredient list. It's their own fancy name for their form of sugar, and it's the most prominent ingredient after water!

The whole "vitamin" aspect of Vitamin Water is irrelevant. So, they fortify their sugar water with chemically synthesized vitamins. You can now purchase "Diet Coke Plus," which is fortified Diet Coke. Because vitamins are added to a beverage, does that make it healthy? Vitamins can't undo the sugars and additives in a beverage, and you are much better off gaining these nutrients from your diet (or a multi vitamin if necessary). Ofcourse adding vitamins to a drink doesn't do any actual harm, but it confuses consumers into thinking that the beverage is a healthy choice. Remember, these companies don't really care about your health and well-being... they're trying to win you over! Our society now has become somewhat obsessed with healthier choices, and the smart companies know how to appeal to that crowd. They boast that their drink is full of essential vitamins and will somehow make you perform your daily tasks more efficiently. Trust me on this: downing a bottle of sugar water is going to do nothing but give you a sugar crash later.

Now, Vitamin Water is not pure poison. It is certainly not a health food or something that I would personally drink, but if the choice is between Vitamin Water or soda, I suppose Vitamin Water is a wiser choice. But you know what the smartest choice is? Water. Real water. It is crucial to keep your body properly hydrated at all times, and pure water is the only way to do this. Drinks that are full with sugar only continue to dehydrate the body, regardless of their water content.

Want something sweet to drink? Try squeezing lemon or lime in pure or sparkling water. Add a few drops of stevia (see my post on this amazing natural, non-caloric sweetener) and you've got a drink that hydrates, tastes great, and isn't full of sugar or added nonsense.

Remember, if you find this information helpful, subscribe!

Hydrate responsibly,

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Collier-Hageman Collier-Hageman 2 years 1 week
Sugar is FAR better for you than any and all artificial sweeteners. ALL artificial sweeteners are synthetic molecules that your body does not know what to do with. They are toxic and should be outlawed. While sugar isn't great for you, (it is not even "slightly healthy". It is totally devoid of any nutrient except calories) it is a natural molecule that your body can metabolize. It is true that lots of foods contain sugar (lactose, maltose, fructose, dextrose, sucrose, etc.) but these all have their own nutritional purpose. It is a gigantic over-simplification to say that all foods get broken down into simple sugar anyway. This would be not unlike saying your car is nothing but rust because it will break down into iron oxide some day.
John15690060 John15690060 2 years 1 week
Why does everyone think sugar is bad? Everything has some form of sugar or gets broken down to simple sugar eventually. There is nothing wrong with making something taste good and be slightly healthy in my opinion.
G15627012 G15627012 2 years 5 weeks
Get yourselves the "Zero" one ! They made it for sugar-concerned people like ya
Chad15611703 Chad15611703 2 years 6 weeks
I recommend adding another 20 ounces of water to dilute the sugar content. Still taste great and will cut the sugar content in half. Still no comparison to drinking any soda.
Moira15606778 Moira15606778 2 years 6 weeks
I bought this drink for the electrolytes. Water isn't helping me.
Gerardo15604963 Gerardo15604963 2 years 7 weeks
It is a nice work, however, it is good to know what Vitamin Water is doing to help society Without mention I love its colors and flavours :D
Luckeyy15502652 Luckeyy15502652 2 years 12 weeks
@Austin. Yes, fruit does have sugar however, those are natural and not artificial. Have you ever heard anyone becoming obese over eating to much fruit?
Austin-Kraus Austin-Kraus 2 years 16 weeks
Where do you recommend getting the vitamins then? You realize fruits have a large amount of sugar as well? An average orange has about 9g of sugar and using your own info and adjusting for serving size, vitamin water has 100% more vitamin C (oranges don't have much else in large amounts, though vitamin water does). Regardless of the added benefits of fiber and the natural nature of oranges, I am primarily arguing that the consumption of sugar is unavoidable and should not be demonized. Especially since, as someone else pointed out in another comment, it has half the sugar of a coke. That being said, I still would not drink it more than once a day, just like I don't eat oranges more than once a day. On another note, how can people argue against synthetic vitamins and their efficacy and then point to multi-vitamins as a plausible alternative? The vitamins weren't grown as pills, they were synthetically made as well. (author does not argue about multi-vitamins, just came up in my reading of this issue.)
Bailey15011777 Bailey15011777 2 years 29 weeks
I didn't even include the facts about 'Vitamin Water Zero'
Bailey15011777 Bailey15011777 2 years 29 weeks
Firstly; I agree with the comments below about how it contains no juice; It's WATER. DUH. Secondly; You obviously don't know how to use Vitamin Water's website, since there's a very clear link that says 'Download Nutrition Facts' and it takes you to another tab with the nutrition facts of the different flavors; which is where I'm getting my information from. Maybe you did see it but you preferred the website that demonized Vitamin Water. Thirdly; You can't talk about every Vitamin Water like it's the same. The different flavors all have different nutritional values. It's like you found the flavor with the least amount of DV percentages and used that as your example. Fourth of All; You can't compare 20 oz of Vitamin Water to 12 oz of Coke. 8 oz is a big difference. A 20 oz serving of Coke has 240 calories compared to every flavor of Vitamin Water's 120. Coke has 75 mg of sodium and I'm happy to say that only one flavor of V.W. has ANY at all (Coco-Refresh; 30 mg, just in case you're wondering). 20 oz of Coke has 65 g of sugar, and Vitamin Water has a small range of 31-32 g of it. Do I really need to go on? Yes, obviously water is good for you. Yes, obviously you need water, or drinks that contain water to survive. Water has no calories or sugars, yes, but it has only 1% of your D.V. of calcium. 0% of the rest of anything else. I'm a high school student and its hard for me to get my necessary vitamins when I can't eat breakfast (I already wake up at six o'clock) and all they have are substituted foods (not even real eggs) and rotting fruits and veggies that have been sitting out for hours. So I reach for a Vitamin water instead of the chocolate milk that everyone else gets, and bring a sandwich from home instead of grabbing the greasy pizza that people get. Don't try to educate people with misinformed facts and totally opinionated paragraphs. Taking your own words from your 'article' ; "... it's time to face the facts!"
Nikki14797766 Nikki14797766 2 years 39 weeks
where can i buy it..? i from malaysia
Nicole14796290 Nicole14796290 2 years 39 weeks
Absolutely! We must be responsible for our decisions and aware of what we are nutrienting our bodies with! PURE WATER... The best beverage for our bodies. May I introduce to you my beverage of choice
Dawn14787523 Dawn14787523 2 years 40 weeks
Not for nothing Courtney, but i am drinking one as well and it only says ''fruit and vegetable (coloring) '' no actual juice listed on there. Im reading it as i type this... anyway it doesnt even matter, if you like it drink it,you dont , then dont. Shes just looking to help people out, no need for name calling ...thats soo 3rd grade. lol.
Delilah14778511 Delilah14778511 2 years 40 weeks
For all of you calling the author names, it says "less than 0.5% fruit or vegetable juice" and its for the coloring. And yes, the author was wrong about serving size. Jesus reigns.
James14654847 James14654847 2 years 47 weeks
For everyone hating on this girl for trying to get people to use their brains: if u think vitamin water is not hurting your body or that sugar or artificial sweeteners don't hurt your organs and screw up your pancreas majorly then you are a moron for believing a companies marketing science instead of common sense.
Denise14563015 Denise14563015 2 years 51 weeks
I couldn't care less if it isn't "health" and I don't drink it for that reason. I am not stupid and can read labels. I happen to like the way it tastes. And, If I wanted juice I would drink juice, if I wanted water I would buy water. There is nothing wrong with Vitamin Water except that is has sugar in it and its a personal choice, right?
Courtney14440982 Courtney14440982 3 years 4 weeks
Ok a few things struck me as slightly off. First- if you scroll up to the ingredients- it says the 4th ingredient is veggie juice. And the next paragraph repeatedly says that this product contains no juice. Obviously the author is a little slow. Second- its called vitamin water, people are expecting flavored water, we don't mind that there isn't a lot of juice. And thirdly- I'm drinking a bottle right now and I'm pissed to see this author also misquoted the percent of daily vales for the drink. Serving size it 1 bottle- 120 calories, sugar 32 g, vit A 25%, vit C , B6, B12, pantothenic acid all have 100% daily value. But I agree with the author that you shouldn't believe everything you read. Namely her article bashing vitamin water. Lol
Katie3402322 Katie3402322 3 years 30 weeks
"First, let me point out that this product contains NO juice. None." - It's called Vitamin WATER, NOT Vitamin JUICE. They're not exactly trying to fool you. "one bottle of Vitamin Water is 2.5 servings, therefore, nutrional information should be adjusted accordingly." - I'm looking right at a bottle and it says "Serving size 1 bottle", so still only 32g of sugar in the Power-c version. The rest of your argument is invalid as it's all addressing the sugar. Lastly, I don't drink it because it's a "health" drink or whatever, I drink it because it's WATER (it's not like the water is chemically produced) and it TASTES GOOD. No, it's not the best choice, just plain water would be better because then at least it would not have sugar in it, but at least get your facts straight if you're going to argue against it.
Carol3197885 Carol3197885 3 years 36 weeks
First, let me point out that this product contains NO juice. you said but the bottle say's water so why would anyone think it is juice? that is a stupid comment about it. Sugar does not hurt the body and you have a choice of reg or sugar free what it does do which is the same as Gatorade it replenishes the water portion .. It also works for hang overs like nothing else
NCOLEGATE NCOLEGATE 3 years 41 weeks
Emily/All, Have you ever done any research into Vita Rain flavored water from Costco? The brand is Costco's brand Kirklands Signature. It seems to have good reviews. The only possible negative I've found so far is the "ENERGY" water has 120mg of caffeine in the bottle. I would also like to find out how they flavor the water. Is it sucralose or something else?
JakeBlack JakeBlack 3 years 49 weeks
I don't know why so many people are attacking the author of this article. The fact is, Vitamin Water and a lot of other sugary drinks are NOT good for you. Sugary drinks like this are one of the reasons we have a epidemic of obesity in this country. If you want to defend Vitimin Water as something healthy to drink, that is fine. You may as well add some twinkies and some Oreos and some chocolate cake to your "healthy" diet too. The author is just trying to help people understand that you should read the label and be smart about not falling for the marketing. If you love vitamin water and are insulted that anyone would say something bad about it - sorry about that. No one is stopping you from drinking it. There was a 300 lb woman behind me on line at the store the other day, so heavy she culd barelyi move. She had an entire shipping cart full of vitamin water. I said to her " wow, you must really like vitamin water!" and she said " well, I want to make sure I drink something healthy". This illustrates the point well, about how the marketing is misleading. The last thing this poor woman needs is to be downing 45 bottles of sugar water.
Collier-Hageman Collier-Hageman 4 years 8 weeks
I've tried Vitamin Water exactly 3 times, and each time the flavor almost made me hurl. Water for me.
yoref yoref 4 years 10 weeks
I am a vitamin water drinker! Over a year ago I was border line diabetic then I substituted vitamin water for soda along with a somewhat better diet and I am no longer border line. Can u help me with this question? Why am I now seeing two different labels on vitamin water? One says sugars 13g and the other one says 32g??? They both taste the same!
beyebre beyebre 4 years 13 weeks
I never drink this kind of stuff because I'm smart enough to know that it's bad for you, and it just tastes nasty. THAT'S a lot of sugar! why is it called vitamin water? It doesn't have a substantial amount of vitamins, nor does it have any nutritional value! I just wanna say RECALL WALKER!!! Jesus Christ is savior.
motodude1990 motodude1990 4 years 13 weeks
"CAN" does NOT mean it WILL replace, it means MAY/MIGHT replace. All these SO-CALLED advocacy groups in Washington are a joke. Many of them like this group are nothing more than PAWNS/STOOGES for the huge drug MFG's. The so-called flu shots never have worked for me, within 2weeks of getting a chemical/mercury laden flu shot I got sicker than a dog, felt like death warmed over, etc. So I can personally attest that Vitamin Water does help in getting you well without DRUGS and their side affects. All you so-called advocacy groups need to wise up and STOP forcing DANGEROUS chemicals down our throats!!!! As far as sugar content, it has half the sugar of fruit juices, a third of what is in sodas, koolaid, etc.