How many calories are in a 20 oz blue Powerade?

Many people enjoy drinking sports drinks like Powerade to rehydrate and replenish electrolytes after exercise. However, these drinks also contain calories and added sugars. A common question people have is how many calories are in a standard 20 oz bottle of blue Powerade?

Calories in Powerade

Powerade is a sports drink manufactured by The Coca-Cola Company. It comes in a variety of flavors and sizes, with the 20 oz bottle being a popular option.

According to the nutrition facts label, a 20 oz bottle of blue Powerade contains the following:

Serving Size 20 oz (591 ml)
Calories 130
Total Fat 0 g
Sodium 200 mg
Total Carbohydrate 34 g
Sugars 34 g
Protein 0 g

So a 20 oz bottle of blue Powerade contains 130 calories. The majority of these calories come from carbohydrates in the form of added sugars.

Calories from Sugar

Looking at the nutrition label, we see that a 20 oz Powerade has 34 grams of sugar. Since there are 4 calories per gram of sugar, we can calculate that 34 grams of sugar equals 136 calories.

This means that essentially all the calories in Powerade (130 calories) come from sugar. The main source of sugar in Powerade is high fructose corn syrup.

So the 34 grams of sugar account for over 100% of the total calories. There are also minor amounts of calories from food dyes and other ingredients.

Powerade Nutrition Facts

Here is the full nutrition facts label for a 20 oz bottle of blue Powerade:

We can see the 20 oz bottle contains 130 calories, with the majority from 34 grams of sugars. It also provides some electrolytes like sodium (200 mg) and potassium (60 mg).

There are no grams of fat or protein. So the only macronutrient in significant amounts is carbohydrates from the added sugars.

Powerade Ingredients

What ingredients are in Powerade that account for the calories and nutrition?

The main ingredients in blue Powerade are:

– Water
– High fructose corn syrup
– Less than 2% of: citric acid, natural flavor, sodium citrate, sodium chloride, monopotassium phosphate, glycerol ester of rosin, blue #1, brominated vegetable oil, polysorbate 80

The biggest source of calories and sugar is the high fructose corn syrup (HFCS). HFCS is added to sweeten Powerade and provide glucose for energy.

The food dyes like blue #1 and brominated vegetable oil contain minor amounts of calories. Overall though, the majority of calories come from the HFCS sweetener.

Comparison to Other Drinks

How does a 20 oz Powerade compare to other popular beverages in terms of calories? Here is a comparison:

Beverage (20 oz serving) Calories
Powerade 130 calories
Coca Cola 240 calories
Gatorade 140 calories
Vitaminwater 120 calories
Lipton Iced Tea 70 calories

Powerade has slightly fewer calories than Gatorade, and a bit more than Vitaminwater. It has around half the calories of a 20 oz Coca Cola. So while Powerade is lower in calories than soda, it still contains a significant amount of added sugar and calories compared to unsweetened beverages like iced tea.

Low Calorie Powerade Options

For people looking to reduce their sugar and calorie intake, Powerade does offer some low-calorie options:

– Powerade Zero: Contains zero calories and zero sugar. Sweetened with sucralose and acesulfame potassium.

– Powerade Zero Drops: Liquid water enhancer with zero calories. Can be added to plain water.

– Diet Powerade: Sweetened with aspartame. Contains 40 calories per 20 oz bottle.

So people have alternatives if they want to enjoy the flavor of Powerade without all the added sugars and calories. Powerade Zero provides electrolytes without the calories of regular Powerade.

Calories Needs When Exercising

While Powerade does contain calories and sugar, it can provide energy during intense exercise when the body needs to replenish carbohydrates.

According to the American College of Sports Medicine, the recommended carbohydrate intake during exercise lasting over 1 hour is 30-60 grams per hour. This amounts to 120-240 calories from carbohydrates per hour.

So the 34 grams of sugar in a 20 oz Powerade would help provide fuel for exercise and meets these carbohydrate recommendations. For shorter duration, less intense exercise, added sugars from sports drinks may be unnecessary. But they can provide energy when doing sustained training for over an hour.

The key is balancing electrolyte and carbohydrate needs for activity vs. limiting added sugar intake otherwise. Drinking artificially sweetened Powerade Zero may provide a compromise if not exercising intensely.

Weight Loss Considerations

For people trying to lose weight, the 130 calories in a 20 oz Powerade can be a concern. This accounts for about 7% of a 2,000 calorie diet.

Drinking Powerade routinely could make it more difficult to maintain a calorie deficit needed for weight loss. From a weight loss perspective, zero-calorie beverages or water are better choices.

However, for very active individuals, the carbohydrates in Powerade consumed during or after exercise could help fuel activity and recovery without risk of weight gain. But intake should be minimized otherwise if trying to lose weight.

Youth Consumption of Powerade

Powerade, like other sugary drinks, is often marketed toward youth involved in sports. However, health authorities recommend caution with giving sugary sports drinks routinely to children.

The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that children only consume sports drinks when engaging in prolonged vigorous activity. For more casual activity, water is best for rehydration and electrolyte needs.

Parents should also be aware of how many extra calories from sugar their child is consuming if drinking large amounts of Powerade. Moderation is key.


In summary, a 20 oz bottle of blue Powerade contains 130 calories, with the majority coming from 34 grams of added sugar. The high fructose corn syrup is the primary source of calories, providing a quick fuel source but little nutritional value.

While Powerade can help replenish carbohydrates and electrolytes during intense training, it’s a less healthy choice than water or zero-calorie beverages for day-to-day hydration needs. Consuming too many liquid calories from Powerade and other sugary drinks should be minimized, especially by those trying to manage their weight.

But for serious athletes who train for long periods, the calories and electrolytes in Powerade can provide useful fuel and hydration benefits. As with most things, moderation and smart timing of intake is key.

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