I am a sucker for vitamin/health type drinks and will pretty much give any of them at least one shot. I first read about Function Drinks over at New York Magazine, and became intrigued by the fact that even customers claim they work. The drinks come in seven different types: brainiac, urban detox, shock sports, alternative energy, light weight, vacation, and house call. Personally, I would love to try vacation as it is rumored to improve your mood and reduce stress, and urban detox for those long Friday and Saturday nights!
Dr. Alex Hughes is the co-founder of Function Drinks and is currently involved in a year long fellowship at the Hospital for Special Surgery in Manhattan. According to New York Magazine,
“Hughes studied scientific papers online while on call at the UCLA hospital, and he paid attention when doctors recommended soy phosphatidylserine as a brain booster to fight dementia, or spoke about how the amino acid N-acetylcysteine could protect the kidney and liver from damage. On his off hours, he would mix N-acetylcysteine with other natural additives like prickly-pear extract, which has been said to reduce hangover symptoms, in an effort to create the first truly effective morning-after drink.
“I just started messing around in the kitchen–slash–lab–slash–meth lab,” he says. He made syrups and emulsions, trying to find a way to keep the N-acetylcysteine from oxidizing. He’d be up late at night cooking and leave the kitchen cluttered with beakers and pans caked with melted sugar. Once, the mixture fermented and a pair of bottles exploded, burying glass shards in the walls.
By 2004, Hughes had developed Urban Detox, and early the next year he and his partners found a factory in Los Angeles to make 5,000 cases. At first, they sold from an old orange van with HUNGOVER? painted on the side. The brand grew quickly over the course of Hughes’s surgical residency. By the end of 2005, when Function sold $400,000 worth of drinks, they traded the van for contracts with distributors. In 2006, Function raised more money, and revenues leaped to $5 million. Last year’s sales reached $10 million, and that figure is expected to double this year.”
Hopefully, with the new Whole Foods opening in Short Pump, I will be able to get my hands on some of these great elixirs. It would be truly wonderful to drink a health drink that actually works or makes you feel slightly different. Every time I drink Vitamin Water, I just feel full!