Sports and energy drinks have hit the markets in most countries in the last 7 years, especially in the US.
While Red Bull dominates the energy drink industry, we will see a few of the sports drinks which are best known for hydrating the body and replacing lost electrolytes after sweating during workouts and sports.
Though water is the natural best hydrate, many athletes and sportsmen still prefer sports drinks to gain more nutrients.
Year Founded: September 1965
Headquarters: Chicago, UnitedStates
Gatorade is a leading sports-drink company worldwide, holding the largest shares in the US market (about 70%) in its category and in Australia as well. Gatorade is PepsiCo’s 4th largest brand in terms of worldwide retail sales in over 80 countries.
“The sports fuel company” serves as the official sports drink for NFL, NBA, MLB, NHL, Indian Super League, NASCAR, and many others.
Though Gatorade claims to hydrate better than daily water, its daily consumption by others is claimed to result in weight gain and other health concerns.
The Gatorade leader once said: “Our major competitor is tap water.”
Pros- Easily digestible, largest market presence
Cons- High sugar level, only for sportspersons
List of Gatorade Competitors and Alternatives
Year Founded: 1988
Headquarters: Atlanta, Georgia, United States
Like PepsiCo’s Gatorade, Coca-Cola launched Powerade in the sports drink industry. Powerade occupies the next position in the US market with approximately 18% shares.
ION4, Ultra, Power Waters, etc., are a few of Powerade’s sports drink varieties, offering tough competition to Gatorade.
ION4 boasts of providing four primary electrolytes and has more micronutrient contents than Gatorade, while the latter two add vitamins such as B3, B6, and B12 which are not on Gatorade’s list commonly. Powerade also offers sports drinks in a huge variety of flavors.
Powerade’s brand mission is “to champion the power of sports of all.”
Pros- Replaces lost vitamins, high energy
Cons- Weight gain, addictive
Year Founded: 2011
Headquarters: Queens, New York
Another American sports drink that became a fully-owned subsidiary of Coca-Cola recently.
Compared to its main rivals above, Bodyarmor is coconut water with the better potassium mineral as the highest electrolyte (compared to their sodium). Besides that, it contains no artificial flavors, dyes, or sweeteners, as claimed in Gatorade.
It’s all-natural. It tastes better than Gatorade, is cheaper than Gatorade, and is healthier too! Bodyarmor has more variants in sports drinks.
Bodyarmor claims to lead the sports drink market by 2025. In recent years, its sales have spiked by more than 300% compared to previous years.
Pros- Affordable price, healthier than others, strong financials
Cons- A vague list of nutrients, relatively new to the market
Year Founded: 2000
Headquarters: Atlanta, Georgia, United States
As urbanization is rising, people are looking for alternatives to caffeinated and high-calorie drinks, considering the health benefits.
Here electrolyte and vitamin water-based drinks are finding more demand in the market. Especially countries like China which rank second in energy drink markets.
Targeting youths between 15 and 23, Vitaminwater is becoming a great highlight in the market nowadays and has further scope ahead.
Its sales skyrocketed after Coca-Cola purchased it in 2007. Vitaminwater is one of the tastiest brands considering all its flavors and its variety hooks the consumers.
However, the brand has also received many criticisms and allegations in the past. Having fought court cases for advertising the product as an “enhanced water” or “health drink” with eight teaspoons of sugar, Vitaminwater will compete in the market only after its repositioning as an energy drink.
Pros- Law calories, good taste
Cons- Weight gain, youth-oriented
Year Founded: 2000
Headquarters: Brooklyn, New York, United States
A beverage product of Gatorade, it is considered much healthier than the parent. Introduced by PepsiCo in 2000, Gatorade, from 2006 onwards, later manufactured it.
Propel waters are considered like any regular tap water but offer 250 times more sodium than water and 70mg of potassium.
Propel serves the same electrolytes as Gatorade, has more vitamins but with no added sweeteners or flavors, and is healthier than Gatorade.
Pros- Law costs, hydration, replacement electrolytes
Cons- health issues, high prices
Year Founded: 1927
Headquarters: London, United Kingdom
Lucozade falls in the category of soft drinks and is #1 in the UK as an energy drink brand. It was more popular as a health drink (glucose and water solution), until 1987, it was promoted as a sports drink. Lucozade is a carbonated drink, unlike Gatorade and other competitors, but it rules in the UK.
Besides, it also contains caffeine equivalent to a cup of tea and high sugar levels, which are its main energy sources. Though it contains artificial sweeteners, one of its products warns to affect children.
Lucozade sponsors various teams and athletes in Ireland and the UK, including the FA Premier League, England Rugby Football Union, Steven Gerrard, Michael Owen, etc.
Pros- Wide range of flavors, easily available
Cons- Bad ingredients, the price
Year Founded: 1996
Headquarters: Norwalk, Connecticut, United States
Named as an abbreviation for South Beach, SoBe comes in wide varieties such as Water, Elixirs, Tea, and Pure Rush.
SoBe Lifewater is next to Coca-Cola’s Vitaminwater in the competition. Drinks like Pure Rush, Elixir, etc., are popular brand products. Their bold flavors attract the crowd.
SoBe was incredibly popular in the ‘90s and even 2000s. Additives such as ginseng and ginger contribute to unique health benefits and tastes for SoBe.
The digital lizard emblems on the bottles have made the company very popular.
Pros- Source of vitamin c, global presence
Cons- Addictive, short-term side effects
Year Founded: 1783
Headquarters: Madrid, Spain
One of the oldest brands of soft drinks since 1783, Schweppes started as a carbonated soda then. Purchased by Coca-Cola again and other companies in other countries, its popular products are ginger ales, sparkling water, and lemonade.
It comes in various products in different countries. Schweppes generally serves as a base for mocktails and cocktails.
In North America and Canada, Schweppes’ Ginger ale wins the market. Schweppes also has strong advertising and marketing amongst its competitors resulting in increasing net profit and net sales.
Pros- Restores potassium, brand value.
Cons- High price
Year Founded: 1970
Headquarters: Sydney, Australia
Steric is an Australian sports drink company. Sold more popularly as a powder than a readymade bottle drink, it is excellent for sickness recovery, especially after diarrhea and operations. It also hydrates the athletes well, assisting them in quicker muscle recoveries.
Magnesium is Staminade’s major nutrient which plays a vital role in restoration, as compared to other drinks (Magnesium is one of the four electrolyte vitals besides sodium and potassium).
It also helps in glycogen storage which ensures sufficient glucose supply to the brain. Thankfully, it has no caffeine and very less sugar content as compared to other sports drinks.
Staminade was Australia’s most-sold sports drink brand until Gatorade and Powerade dominated these markets in both powder and energy drinks.
Pros- Restores magnesium, no caffeine, less sugar
Cons- High prices, not recognized so much
Year Founded: 1993
Headquarters: United States
All Sport was originally launched by PepsiCo in competition with Coca-Cola in 1994 but was later sold in 2001.
All Sport is a non-carbonated sports drink that comes in 8 flavors. It gives an optimal balance of all nutrients and majorly Vitamin C. Amongst electrolytes, it has more Potassium than Gatorade. So All Sports cannot be considered a mere thirst quencher.
All Sport sponsors many athletes and teams. All sport also comes as powder stick and freezer pops.
Pros- Flavor options, Vitamin C
Cons- High sugar and caffeine, relatively new to the market
FAQs for Gatorade Alternatives & Competitors
How many flavors of Gatorade are there?
Gatorade comes in more than 20 flavors. Some flavors are exclusive to a particular country only.
Does Gatorade contain caffeine?
Who should avoid Gatorade?
Diabetics should avoid Gatorade considering its high glycemic index level. Daily consumption of Gatorade has resulted in weight gain. It contains high sodium as well as sugars like all other sports drinks.
Can Gatorade be taken in excess?
Consumption of any sports or energy drink in excess has its impacts. Like most other sports drinks, Gatorade contains a high level of sodium and sugar which is unsafe if consumed in excess.
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