Who Needs Sports Drinks When You Have Palo Azul?
Who needs artificial blue sports drinks when you have this natural palo azul tea with electrolytes and 0 sugar?
We’re not saying ditch your sports drinks for this naturally alkaline tea with electrolytes such as potassium...which is basically what sports drinks are made of! Except palo azul doesn't have sugar, artificial flavors, or artificial colors...not that it needs any coloring when it already looks this amazing! Ok we're saying it, go au naturel all the way! 😉
Speaking about artificial things...most sports drinks have calcium disodium EDTA, which is a preservative that has been linked to kidney damage. Even though sports drinks have electrolytes, they’re acidic because of their sugar content and preservatives, which ironically can dehydrate you!
You might think that since palo azul is a diuretic, that it will dehydrate your body...and you'd be right if palo azul was an aquaretic diuretic such as green tea or coffee. But palo azul is no ordinary diuretic... 😉 One study found that palo azul is a "potassium-sparing diuretic", in contrast to an aquaretic diuretic which is most common in phytodiuretic herbal medicines. This essentially means that palo azul tea can help to flush out toxins and increase urination without electrolyte loss, so it doesn't lead to dehydration.
Still not convinced? Most sports drinks are loaded with refined sugar which has no fiber or natural nutrients and minerals. Therefore, refined sugar will spike your insulin levels as soon as it enters your bloodstream and you guessed it...this decreases your insulin sensitivity and leads to more insulin in your body which leads to more fat storage. If you want some natural unrefined sugar, you can add honey to palo azul which actually has nutrients and fiber.
Not all sports drinks have sugar though, some have artificial sweeteners like stevia, monk fruit, erythritol, aspartame, sucralose, ace K, etc. If you’re going to pick one of these, we recommend going for stevia or monk fruit, as we’ve reviewed several studies that found them to have the least negative impact on your insulin sensitivity and gut bacteria. However, most other artificial sweeteners have been found to spike insulin levels regardless of the fact that they have 0 sugar. Moreover, all artificial sweeteners have been found to negatively affect your gut microbiome which can lead to glucose intolerance and hormonal imbalance.
Lastly, we’ll leave you with this quote from a 2015 study:
“Until recently, the general belief was that non-nutritive sweeteners (NNS) were healthy sugar substitutes because they provide sweet taste without calories or glycemic effects. However, data from several epidemiological studies have found that consumption of NNS, mainly in diet sodas, is associated with increased risk to develop obesity, metabolic syndrome, and type 2 diabetes.”
Fernando Frazão/Agência Brasil, CC BY 3.0 BR, via Wikimedia Commons
Just to illustrate how important insulin sensitivity is for your metabolism, a study concluded that “strength training improves insulin sensitivity in men with insulin resistance.” This is why people who do strength training generally have more muscle and less fat, because more muscle = higher insulin sensitivity = better metabolism = you burn more energy rather than store it as fat.
This is also why sprinters like Usain Bolt look more fit than marathon runners. Running on the treadmill for hours will burn calories, but it doesn’t improve your metabolism nearly as much as lifting heavy weights.
Palo azul tea is far from being a sports drink, and we think that’s a good thing. Who needs all that sugar, artificial sweeteners and artificial colors when you can have a healthy alkaline tea that looks this amazing? Au naturel baby, that’s how we like it!
Once you go blue, you never go back! 😉
Palo azul's scientific and common names: Eysenhardtia polystachya, Cyclolepis genistoides, Lignum nephricitum, kidney wood, kidney tea, palo dulce