All Natural, Low Carb Electrolyte Drink Recipe
A few weeks ago, my cardiologist recommended I drink a quart of G2 every morning to boost my blood pressure five points or so (I have low BP), stating that it would perk me up better than a cup of coffee. He also said that some people — celiacs especially — may just not absorb water well enough, and if I start the day with an electrolyte drink, it will help me to better absorb water throughout the day. He recommended G2 because it’s low carb; I agree I don’t want to start the day by chugging a corn syrup-laden liquid. However, I knew that I was going to have to find an alternative. 1) I am too cheap to buy a quart of G2 for every day, and 2) even if G2 is low carb, it’s also chock full of artificial colors and flavors which I really don’t want to drink every day.
So, I did a little research online, but wasn’t able to find any recipe that really fit my needs. Homemade recipes, yes… but either they were chock-full of sugar, and/or recommended using unsweetened Kool-Aid to flavor it, or they seemed too incomplete, or something like that. So, I have experimented the last couple of weeks, and finally came up with a recipe that works. For me, the biggest challenge was overcoming the taste of baking soda. Many recipes online use a whopping 1/2 tsp of the stuff, and it leaves me thinking, “Did the creators of this recipe actually drink this???” However, it’s my understanding that you need the baking soda in order to balance the acid content of electrolyte drinks, so you don’t want to just omit it.
A few notes: I tried a lot of different flavors and flavorings, but True Orange, which is 100% natural, seemed to work best. Also, I use stevia and fructose as a sweetener. As with any sugar, fructose shouldn’t be over-used. But its benefit is that you need significantly less of it to produce sweetness, and fructose has properties that boost the apparent sweetness of other sweet substances. Some studies show that fructose has a much lower glycemic index than table sugar, but other studies show that it really depends on how fructose is combined with other sugars, and how it is metabolized in the body… Ugh. It gets very technical. Still, from what I understand, fructose is still comparatively healthier as a sweetener than sugar. So. I use 1 Tbsp fructose and 2 packets of stevia for a total of 14 carbs. I had to use 3 or more Tbsp honey to make this drink palatable, and that’s 51 carbs, which for my purposes, is too much. Ditto other recipes which call for 3 to SEVEN tablespoons of regular sugar per quart (36 to 84 carbs total). You can try, of course, using plain stevia or other sweeteners, but I have tried many and none of them did the trick. If you come up with a palatable combination of alternate sweeteners — or any other improvements to the recipe — let me know!! I’m especially curious about agave syrup/nectar, which I’ve never purchased, but just may, if someone tries it and says it tastes fabulous.
The total price of a quart, following the recipe below, is less than $0.25, with the biggest contributor being the True Orange (which I found for $1.99 for a box of 20 packets, on sale. Its regular price was $2.49/box).
So. Without further ado…
All-Natural, Low Carb Electrolyte Drink
- 2 packets True Orange
- 2 packets stevia
- 1 Tbsp fructose
- ¼ tsp fine sea salt
- ¼ tsp salt substitute (“No Salt” or Morton’s, or other potassium chloride-based substitute)
- 1/8 tsp baking soda
- optional: ¼ tsp granulated citric acid, or ascorbic acid, or 1 tsp lemon juice
- 1 quart (32 oz) purified water
Measure/pour all ingredients except for water into the bottom of a quart container. Add a little bit of purified water and swirl to mix (solution will fizz a bit). Fill the container the rest of the way with water, cap and shake to mix. Tastes best refrigerated.
(NOTE: On 28 Feb, 2013, I made a gallon of this, so a quadruple recipe… I used 1/4 tsp pure stevia extract, 2 Tbsp fructose, 1 tsp sea salt, 1 tsp No Salt, 1/2 tsp baking soda, 1 tsp citric acid, and 1 tsp pure lemon extract. TASTES GREAT, and half of the fructose used in the original recipe.)