Time to Stop Drinking Vitamin Water

23:39 Tue 19 Jun 2007. Updated: 00:45 20 Jun 2007
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Which is a shame, because I rather like the stuff. Am probably mildly addicted to it, in fact. But this post makes me aware of a bunch of thinsg I’ve been ignoring about it—primarily the true nature of “crystalline fructose”.

Which turns out to be, in essence, high fructose corn syrup that’s been processed into a crystal state. Yes, I should have figured that out, but I didn’t look too closely. Which was a mistake, and now I’m going to cut the stuff out of my diet.

I cut out soft drinks years ago, and never drink soda. I had been drinking mainly juice for a long time, but somehow got seduced by the Vitamin Water brand. It tastes good, it’s conveniently packaged (which makes more difference than I would expect it to if I rationally weighed that as a factor), and it has just the right viscosity. Sadly, two of these things doubtless depend on the HFCS-derived crystals, and the third isn’t enough to make up for that.

I should have been a lot more suspicious, really. How likely was it that a major consumer product rollout would be anything other than very dubious industrial food? It’s possible, but the odds were and are against it… so I need to find something else, and that something else will probably be a lot less convenient. My brother recommended green tea heavily diluted with water, so maybe I’ll try that. Fruit juice is obviously an option, and with a little effort there I can figure out the right dilution level for optimal viscosity. And I could store both of these things in old Vitamin Water bottles, thus retaining the packagin convenience.

Trader Joe’s has good juice and lemonade. The lemonade is probably something of an indulgence, but I am pretty sure it’s HFCS-free.

5 Responses to “Time to Stop Drinking Vitamin Water”

  1. Lev Says:

    Or get off of the processed food chain entirely and make your own lemonade and/or other fruit drinks. It’s easy, tasty and cheap.

  2. Tadhg Says:

    Sounds like a good plan, assuming that all one needs is fruit, a blender, water, and some containers. But step one will be buying juice, because when weaning myself off of bad habits like this, it’s often best to follow the path of least resistance.

    Ultimately, however, I do hope to get away from that processed food chain—reading The Omnivore’s Dilemma certainly pushes in that direction.

  3. Niall O'Higgins Says:

    Smoothies, fruit juices and sodas are all surprisingly high in sugar. In particular, they are hard on your teeth. Much better to drink tea or coffee. Or eat the damn fruit. Blending it just takes out the useful fiber, and makes you feel less full per unit sugar consumed.

  4. Tadhg Says:

    Niall: Well, I’m not likely to start drinking coffee… I should drink more tea, most likely. I’m very used to drinking stuff that’s juice-like, if not juice, and am not likely to give that up, so finding the healthiest thing to drink that fulfills that function is what I have to do. Evidently, it’s not Vitamin Water… more likely 100% juice diluted with water, I suspect.

  5. CB Says:

    Or you could just buy a multivitamin, crush it and include it in your water (or flavored water). Voila! Vitamin Water!

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