Corporate Fitness and Active Aging

NIFS: Core Power, Coca-Cola invests in a Healthy Protein Shake

core powerA Coca-Cola protein shake? Seriously? You’re telling me the manufacturer of a soft drink (that can clean the gunk off a car battery, mind you) has invested in something that’s actually beneficial for me to drink? Never did I think I would see something like this.

For those who have absolutely no idea what I’m talking about, the Coca-Cola Company has partnered with Fair Oaks Farm Brands to assist in the branding and distribution of a protein shake called Core Power. No, it is not Coca-Cola flavored. It’s vanilla, chocolate, or strawberry, and so on, just like the other protein shakes out there (and honey-flavored, which I found interesting). I personally tried the vanilla flavor. One word: delicious! And why wouldn’t it be? Coke’s primary objective is to make its products taste good. Well, they have succeeded once again in supporting this new drink.

But let’s get down to the nitty-gritty here: it's the nutritional information that really counts. Generally speaking, Core Power is not too far off the mark. However, these five things stuck out to me as a wellness professional when learning about this drink:

  • Taste: We already know…delicious.
  • Protein: It’s a protein drink. Of course this tops the list of things to look at. Compared to the protein shake I normally drink (which shall remain under anonymity), it has only about half as much protein. We’re not off to a good start.
  • Sugar: Protein shakes are not always known to have the best taste, so a little sugar to sweeten things up isn’t the end of the world if it’s going to help you drink it consistently. However, Core Power has a huge serving of sugar. In one 11.5-ounce bottle, there are 26 grams of sugar, compared to the 2 to 3 grams I get with my normal shake.
  • Carbohydrates: Although it’s not as bad as the sugar, the carb count is much higher in this shake than in comparable serving sizes of other brands.
  • Protein: I know, I already mentioned protein, but this is a different topic concerning protein. I’m not denying the fact that there are 26 grams of protein per serving. However, I wanted to point out that I don’t think it’s necessarily “good” protein. Under the ingredients, I don’t see the words “whey” or “casein” anywhere. These can often be signs of a quality protein shake. Not that the protein included in Core Power is negative, it’s just not quite as beneficial as other types.

In conclusion, I unfortunately will have to give Core Power a sad thumbs-down. It just tastes so good, though. It’s like an ice cream shake (see my comments on the sugar above). Perhaps it could be a good “gateway” protein for those new protein users out there. It will get them started on protein consumption, but then they can lean toward using the more beneficial versions once they get their routine down. Sometimes you gotta do whatever works.

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Topics: nutrition sports drinks sugar healthy habits

Ditching Soda Can Be an Amazing Weight-Loss Strategy

This blog was written by Jenna Pearson. Meet our blogging fitness specialists at the NIFS website.

soda, weightlossIn 2010, the average American consumed over 44 gallons of carbonated soft drinks! While this number does include diet beverages, it does not take into account the number of non-carbonated, sugared soft drinks (such as lemonade, iced tea, juice, sports drinks, etc.), which tally up to about 17 gallons per person per year!

Looking at those numbers from a nutritional standpoint is eye-opening to say the least. Here are the facts, according to CalorieKing:

  • A single, 20-ounce bottle of regular soda contains about 250 calories and 17 teaspoons of sugar (70.9 grams).
  • An 8-ounce serving of apple juice contains about 120 calories and more than 6 teaspoons of sugar (26 grams).
  • A 32-ounce sports drink contains 200 calories and nearly 14 teaspoons of sugar (56 grams).
  • A 12-ounce glass of sweet iced tea contains 130 calories and more than 8 teaspoons of sugar (35 grams).
  • A 12-ounce glass of lemonade contains 150 calories and almost 10 teaspoons of sugar (40 grams).

For those keeping track, these numbers show that the average non-diet soda contains about 12.5 calories and .85 teaspoons of sugar per ounce, while an average non-diet, non-carbonated soft drink contains about 9 calories and .6 teaspoons of sugar per ounce. This means that if the average American did not consume diet beverages in the figures above, he or she would have consumed roughly 70,400 calories and 4,787 teaspoons of sugar from carbonated beverages AND 19,584 calories and 1,306 teaspoons of sugar from non-carbonated beverages. That’s a total of 89,984 calories and 6,093 teaspoons of sugar!

Do you see yourself in these numbers? Are you trying to lose weight? If so, think about this: If you were to ditch your sugar and calorie-laden drinks for water—and make absolutely no other changes to your diet or physical activity level—you could lose up to 26 pounds in a year.

Yup, that’s right, 26 pounds.

Topics: nutrition weight loss calories sports drinks sugar