If you’re a fan of Gatorade, you’ll be happy to know that its expiration date is just two years from the date of manufacture.
That’s why Gatorade bottles usually have a sticker with a two-year expiration date on them.
But what exactly is the shelf life of Gatorade?
And how can you tell if your Gatorade has expired?
Keep reading to learn more about Gatorade’s shelf life.
When does Gatorade expire?
The FDA recommends that people throw out any unopened Gatorade products after two years.
However, this recommendation isn’t law in all states.
Some states like New York require Gatorade products to have a one-time use by expiration date.
Because of these discrepancies, it’s important to check the expiration date on your Gatorade before using it.
If the expiration date is less than one year away, there’s no need to worry.
Gatorade also doesn’t specify an expiration date for individual flavors.
However, some brands may have expiration dates printed on their packaging.
How long does Gatorade last?
Since Gatorade is made up of water, sugar, and electrolytes, it will only maintain its taste and texture as long as those three ingredients remain.
But if you don’t consume Gatorade within two years, the sugar and electrolytes will start to degrade.
This means that the product might taste different or become very salty.
In other words, it won’t taste like what you remember.
In addition, the expiration date on a Gatorade bottle is a guideline, not a rule.
For instance, it’s possible that your Gatorade could still be good even though the expiration date is approaching.
How can you tell if Gatorade is expired?
As mentioned above, Gatorade’s expiration date is just two years from the date of manufacture.
To find out if your Gatorade is still fresh, look at the bottom of the label.
If the expiration date is still two years off, then your Gatorade is fine to drink.
But if the expiration date is closer to the current date, then you should toss the bottle and buy a new one.
There are some other signs that your Gatorade might be past its prime.
For example, the color of your Gatorade might change from bright blue to dark brown or black.
Also, the liquid inside the bottle might smell sour or moldy.
You shouldn’t consume Gatorade if these symptoms appear because they mean that the product has spoiled.
What happens if you drink expired Gatorade?
If you open a Gatorade bottle that’s past its expiration date and drink the contents, you risk getting sick.
Most Gatorade manufacturers contain preservatives so that the product doesn’t spoil too quickly.
These preservatives include sodium benzoate, potassium sorbate (E220), and propionic acid (E210).
However, when these chemicals break down, they form harmful compounds that can cause nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and cramps.
Fortunately, these symptoms usually go away within 24 hours.
So if you experience severe stomach pain, nausea, or diarrhea after consuming expired Gatorade, you should contact poison control immediately.
Is it safe to drink expired Gatorade?
The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that children under the age of 6 shouldn’t consume any sugar-based beverages such as sodas, juices, sports drinks, and sweetened teas.
Since Gatorade contains both sugar and sodium, it’s best to avoid giving it to kids who are younger than six.
Although you should never give Gatorade to infants, the American Academy of Family
Physicians suggests that adults over 65 shouldn’t drink Gatorade due to the high levels of sodium found in the product.
How long after the expiration date can you drink Gatorade?
Because Gatorade is made of water, sugar, and electrolytes, it won’t lose its flavor or texture until around two years after it was first manufactured.
So if you bought a Gatorade product that had an expiration date of April 1, 2022, you would be able to sip from it until April 2021.
However, there are exceptions to this rule.
For instance, some states require Gatorade to have a one-time use by expiration date.
Therefore, if you purchased a Gatorade product that had a one-time use by expiration date, you wouldn’t be able to drink it after the initial opening.
What are the consequences of drinking expired Gatorade?
Unfortunately, many people get injured every day while working in dangerous jobs.
One way that workers can get hurt is by slipping and falling into a pool of water.
Unfortunately, many people don’t wear proper safety equipment while performing these tasks.
As a result, they often end up drowning.
If you were to slip and fall into a pool full of Gatorade, your chances of surviving are slim because the product is toxic.
Even worse, you could die from ingesting the chemical compounds in the Gatorade.
What are the risks of drinking expired Gatorade?
As discussed previously, Gatorade is made up of water, sugar, and electrolytes.
When you ingest these components, you’re actually taking in water.
Although water is essential for your survival, it’s also extremely dangerous.
Drinking water can lead to dehydration, kidney failure, and death.
If you accidentally drink expired Gatorade instead of water, you could suffer from serious health problems.
You might feel nauseous, dizzy, and weak.
Or you could develop seizures or hallucinations. In extreme cases, you could even die.
Gatorade is also known to cause allergic reactions in people who are sensitive to certain food additives.
For example, some people react badly to artificial colors, flavors, and preservatives that are found in most sports drinks.
What are the dangers of drinking expired Gatorade?
According to the CDC, Gatorade is one of the top causes of accidental poisoning deaths in the United States.
In fact, it’s responsible for roughly 80% of all accidental poisoning deaths involving sports drinks.
Some of the main reasons that people get poisoned by Gatorade are:
Ingesting the wrong amount of the beverage.
Drinking the beverage instead of water.
Not discarding the container properly.
Not following the manufacturer’s instructions for storing the product correctly.
What are the side effects of drinking expired Gatorade?
Aside from causing serious health issues, Gatorade is also known to cause minor side effects in some users.
For example, some people report feeling anxious, nervous, irritable, and/or hyperactive.
If you suspect that you’ve developed a reaction to Gatorade, call your doctor right away.
This information is written only to teach the basics of nutrition, and it is not meant to replace the advice of a physician or medical professional.
If you have any questions about a medical condition or your health goals, always see a physician or other trained health expert.