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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2016
    Posts
    18

    Energy drink for someone who is pre-diabetic

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    The title kinda says it all - I need some help finding or making an energy drink (plus electrolytes) for long rides. Plain water just doesn't get it for me (I always used to swig Gatorade during rides) and all the drinks that are readily available have lotsa sugar.

    Thanks for any advice!

    Jean

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    Seattle
    Posts
    501
    What about NUUN tablets that you add to water? I'm pretty sure they have low sugar/no sugar tablets:

    https://nuun.com/products/
    2014 Surly Straggler
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  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    california
    Posts
    1,200
    +1 for nuun. nuun plus is good for carbs and electrolytes.

    For homemade…1/2 liter ginger water to 1 liter water….juice of three lemons or limes….˝+ tsp of sea salt….stevia to taste if wanted….it's also good for recovery and with homemade energy bars works for me.

    ginger water….cut medium ginger root into coins and place into a large pot. Add 1 liter of water. boil, simmer for 15 minutes, shut off heat let steep until it cools.
    ‘The negative feelings we all have can be addictive…just as the positive…it’s up to
    us to decide which ones we want to choose and feed”… Pema Chodron

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    New Jersey
    Posts
    1,940
    NUUN is good if you just need electrolytes. If you use that as your hydration, you can get your calories from regular food. It will probably give you more control over your sugar intake.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Uncanny Valley
    Posts
    14,645
    NUUN just reformulated most of their products, and while I haven't tried the new formulation, they've removed the artificial sweeteners, foaming agent and preservatives, and added more sodium, so next time I order, I may try NUUN Active. I've been using GU Hydration Drink Tabs, which don't supply calcium or magnesium. For the running I do, I'm able to get enough magnesium from supplements I take regularly, but I think if I were cycling as I used to or ultra running - i.e., if I were out for more than around five hours at a time - I'd probably need to supplement calcium and magnesium during my workouts also. That would be a reason to use the new NUUN over GU.

    As far as your calories, how do you do with long chain carbohydrates? Most of the energy products available emphasize maltodextrin over simple sugars; most of them have so little simple sugar that they add stevia and/or a small amount of sucrose just for a sweet flavor. Skratch Labs is an exception; all its calories come from simple sugars.

    I'm not sure who we have participating currently in this forum, who's diabetic. You might be best to talk it over with a sports nutritionist who has expertise with diabetes, or a diabetes-focused nutritionist who has experience with endurance athletes. It's important that you be able to sort out how your body processes sugars and what happens to your insulin level during endurance activity. Based on the experience of many of us with other types of issues, a lot of health professionals who deal with people with chronic health issues have no idea what to do with endurance athletes, or what happens in our bodies during exertion.
    Last edited by OakLeaf; 03-16-2016 at 04:18 PM. Reason: correct the old nuun formula
    Speed comes from what you put behind you. - Judi Ketteler

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Concord, MA
    Posts
    13,099
    I don't have diabetes, but I do have a stomach that is sensitive to the sugars in most energy drinks. I use the Nuun without the sorbitol (haven't tried the new formula) for shorter, hotter rides (like 20-30 miles) and I use Skratch Labs hydration mix for long rides. It has the lowest amount of sugar I could find and it tastes awesome. No after taste or sickening side effects.
    I second the idea of going to an RD with a sports nutrition background.
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  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    WA State
    Posts
    4,389
    As far as I know NUUN has never used any artificial flavors or colors….. the reformulation looks like they've replaced the sorbitol with dextrose and are using monk fruit and stevia as sweeteners now. I'm not a big fan of stevia as I taste it as leaving a rather nasty aftertaste even when present in relatively small amounts, so the new NUUN may not please me. I don't know about monk fruit, I'm not sure if I've ever tried anything with it.
    "Sharing the road means getting along, not getting ahead" - 1994 Washington State Driver's Guide

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  8. #8
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Uncanny Valley
    Posts
    14,645
    You're probably right about the artificial colors, I posted before I looked again at the ingredients. But the old NUUN contained polyethylene glycol, sodium benzoate and acesulfame potassium. That's why I used to use NUUN U-Naturals before GU came out with their tablets, which contain much more sodium. NUUN is clearing out their old stock and still has links to the nutrition information on the old formula.
    Speed comes from what you put behind you. - Judi Ketteler

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Concord, MA
    Posts
    13,099
    I don't do well with Stevia, either, but we will see. I have about 3 cylinders left, so I won't be ordering new stuff for a bit.
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  10. #10
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Uncanny Valley
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    14,645
    I'll save you from looking it up, the GU tablets I use have stevia. Also xylitol, which is easier on most people's stomachs than sorbitol, but still a sugar alcohol.
    Speed comes from what you put behind you. - Judi Ketteler

  11. #11
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    california
    Posts
    1,200
    Quote Originally Posted by Eden View Post
    As far as I know NUUN has never used any artificial flavors or colors….. the reformulation looks like they've replaced the sorbitol with dextrose and are using monk fruit and stevia as sweeteners now. I'm not a big fan of stevia as I taste it as leaving a rather nasty aftertaste even when present in relatively small amounts, so the new NUUN may not please me. I don't know about monk fruit, I'm not sure if I've ever tried anything with it.
    Yeah I don’t think they’ve used any artificial colors. Monk fruit's antioxidant mogrosides are nuun's primary sweetener and are low glycemic. Not a lot of studies done so far but Buddhist monks in China have been using it for centuries. (years not rides)

    Jean...I remember a pro bike team with its riders all being diabetic....which is good for inspiration, education and empowerment!!!

    eta Team Novo Nordisk
    Last edited by rebeccaC; 03-16-2016 at 08:35 PM.
    ‘The negative feelings we all have can be addictive…just as the positive…it’s up to
    us to decide which ones we want to choose and feed”… Pema Chodron

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Feb 2016
    Posts
    18
    Wow, some good ideas here - thanks!

    I stopped riding 15 months ago when I got my first diagnosis of essential hypertension, high cholesterol, high a1c, and irregular EKG. (Thanks ever so much for those genes, Mom...) So this weekend's ride will be a big event for me and I don't want to get dehydrated or bonk. I think I'll try the NUUN tablets and also make some of RebeccaC's recipe to see which suits me best. Thanks again folks!

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    Boise Idaho
    Posts
    1,192
    My favorite is Ultima - zero sugar look for it at Whole Foods or your local Coop
    We carry Nuun in our shop and as it is easy to pack for touring I use that for trips.
    For me though, I'd rather drink water and eat at Jelly Belly Sports Bean (which I expect has sugar) ~
    Last edited by Sky King; 03-18-2016 at 06:54 AM.
    Sky King
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