The image shown here looks as though it probably predates the 1980’s by at least two decades, but it does indicate the thing I most remember about Lucozade from when I was a kid. Nowadays bottled soft drinks most always come in plastic bottles, but back in the 1980’s we still used glass bottles. Lucozade was always special though, in that it looked like it was made from orange glass by virtue of the orange cellophane in which the bottle was wrapped. It was always disappointing to find that the bottle was actually completely clear once the cellophane had been removed.
Back in the 1980’s Lucozade was looked on as a “special” drink, and certainly not something that you would drink on a day to day basis. Today of course the idea of the energy drink is rife, and Lucozade finds itself fitting in with this niche in the world of fizzy pop, but back then you would only drink Lucozade after a bout of illness. Nobody in their right mind could ever say they enjoy vomiting, but being ill was looked forward to in a peculiar way when you were a child if it meant you were allowed to drink a bottle of Lucozade as a result.
Lucozade and illness went hand in hand, and indeed some of the advertising for the product dating back to the 1950’s made a big point of including a picture of a nurse and stating how Lucozade was used by doctors in hospitals. Of course, those were the times when drinking a pint of Guinness a day was allowed to be advertised as “Good For You“. I’m sure Lucozade must have been available in supermarkets at the time, but I remember how it normally entailed Mum making a trip to the chemist to buy a bottle whenever my sister or myself were ill. Certainly buying the smaller individual size bottles was not easily possible like it is today, and a full size bottle had to be purchased.
Of course, the reason why Lucozade is looked on as a beverage for the sick is because of it’s composition. It is high in glucose, which is a form of sugar which is very easily absorbed by the body, and more readily can be converted by the body to give it the energy it needs. Being sick is not good for your energy reserves, and the ability of your body to absorb nutrients is reduced, so providing a supply of easily absorbed nutrients is obviously a good idea. Hence the product slogan “Replaces Lost Energy“.
Personally I love Lucozade, but I still find I hesitate when buying a bottle because I still think of it as the drink for when you were poorly. Thankfully Lucozade have made the dilemma easier for me by introducing flavours such as Orange or Apple, but I have to admit that the original flavour is still my favourite, even if it does bring back less than ideal memories of shouting Ralph into a bucket…