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Product Comparison Chart: Get The Real Scoop!

DRINK (g) (cal) (mg) (mg) (mg) (mg) (g)
 

infinIT Fluid Energizer

27.2-60

119-418

200-650

46 - 150

12.8 – 41.6

9.6 – 31.2

Up to 10 g

No

200-300

Gatorade Thirst Quencher
read more

28

112

220

60

N/A

N/A

N/A

Yes

373

Gatorade Endurance
read more

28

112

400

180

12

6

N/A

No

295

Accelerade
read more

21

160

253

86

N/A

N/A

5

Yes

310

Cytomax
read more

20

150

120

225

N/A

N/A

N/A

Yes

482

Enervitene Enervit G
read more

28

120

225

45

N/A

13.5

N/A

Yes

325

 

All amounts are per 16-ounce serving



Gatorade® Thirst Quencher

Pros:

  • Includes both sodium and potassium electrolytes
  • Readily available
  • Large variety of flavors
  • MJ likes it

    Cons:

  • Uses fructose as a sweetener can cause stomach inflammation over extended use
  • Osmolality of 373 too high and can lead to cramping, nausea and the shut down of absorption
  • Singular carbohydrate source is inefficient
  • Flavor can be too strong for most athletes
  • No option for protein
  • No adjustability for personal requirements and preferences

  • Notes: Good for cutting your lawn, chopping wood or even mall walking. Not a product to be used by athletes expecting performance from their nutrition. Similar ingredients and nutritional profile to a soft drink. Use over an extended period can result in stomach irritation and cramping known as “Gatorade® gut” because of the excessively high Osmolality and use of fructose as a carbohydrate source.




    Gatorade® Endurance

    Pros:

  • More complete electrolyte profile
  • Osmolality within acceptable limits
  • Does not use fructose

    Cons:

  • Low amount of carbohydrate
  • Flavor can be too strong for most athletes
  • No option for protein
  • No adjustability for personal requirements and preferences

  • Notes: A vast improvement over the standard Gatorade formulation. At only 150 calories per 20 ounce serving it is difficult to get enough calories from Gatorade Endurance alone. No adjustability, you have to force yourself to drink more. GE has enough electrolytes for some athletes. Flavor can be too strong and grow tiresome after drinking it for several hours. To Gatorade's credit, (while not perfect) this is a much-improved product over the old Gatorade.




    Accelerade®

    Pros:

  • Contains protein
  • Adequate amount of carbohydrate
  • Includes both sodium and potassium electrolytes

    Cons:

  • Incomplete electrolyte profile, no magnesium or potassium
  • Osmolality of 310
  • Uses fructose that can lead to irritation of the stomach lining
  • Contains a high amount of protein that can lead to stomach distress in many athletes
  • No adjustability for personal requirements and preferences
  • Taste over long periods and when warm

  • Notes: Pacific Health Labs (PHL) was the first company to use protein in a sports drink. The jury is still out as to the usefulness of protein during exercise. The study titled Effects of a Carbohydrate-Protein Beverage on Cycling Endurance and Muscle Damage in the journal Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise [36(7):1233-1238, July 2004 by SAUNDERS, MICHAEL J.; KANE, MARK D.; TODD, M. KENT] claims a 24% increase in endurance because of the introduction of protein.

    We have two issues with the study. First, we consider their data incomplete since the experiment had no control placebo group to use as a baseline for comparing results. Second, the two solutions used in the study were not calorie-matched. The study contrast was between one 75% solution of Gatorade and one 7.5% solution WITH protein. It is impossible for us to draw the conclution that it was the protein that made the performance diifference because it might have been the additional calories in the protein that made the difference.

    Here is the Gatorade position, and frankly we agree with most of it:

    "We believe that research on the benefits of protein for performance to this point has been inconclusive. In fact, the same research group just presented a follow-up study at the 2004 American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) meeting that showed contrasting results - no additional performance benefit of a carbohydrate-protein mixture. (B.C. Romano et al. Effect of 4:1 ratio of carbohydrate/protein beverage on endurance performance, muscle damage and recovery. Med. Sci. Sports Exerc. 36(5):S126, 2004)." Reference here

    InfinIT Nutrition believes that protein has some benefit but does not have to be at a 4 to 1 ratio as claimed by PHL. Most serious athletes have difficulty processing large ammounts of protein per serving at an elevated heart rate. Most athletes seem to do well with between 2 and 6 grams of protein per serving. This is a ratio of between 10 and 20 to 1 carbs to protein ratio depending on the amount of calories per serving. It is our belief that a lower amount of protein still carries the same benefits of increased performance, better recovery times and keeps you less hungry (a HUGE benefit) without the potential problems.




    CytoMax®

    Pros:

  • Includes both sodium and potassium as electrolytes
  • Multiple carbohydrate sources
  • Maltodextrine is primary energy source

    Cons:

  • Very low amount of electrolytes
  • Very low amount of calories
  • Incomplete electrolyte profile, no magnesium or potassium
  • Osmolality of 482
  • No option for protein
  • No adjustability for personal requirements and preferences
  • Taste, over extended periods and when warm

  • Notes: Cytomax’s claim to fame is their unique lactic acid buffer ingredient Alpha-L-Polylactate™ that is supposed to lower the levels of lactic acid and increase VO2Max. CytoSport has been in the market for a long time and has enjoyed success. The claims about Alpha-L-Polylactate™ are intriguing.

    Cytomax does not include any option for protein and has a very small amount of electrolyte and calories for most endurance athlete. Most athletes would have to supplement with salt tablets if they choose to use this product. A 150-pound athlete typically needs to take 300 calories per hour for extended exercise. That means that you would have to drink almost 50 ounces per hour to get your hourly caloric needs!

    While Cytomax is an interesting product, it would be difficult to use for events lasting much longer that 2 hours.




    Enervit® G Sport

    Pros:

  • Complete electrolyte profile including both sodium and potassium, Potassium, Magnesium and Chloride as electrolytes
  • Multiple carbohydrate sources of maltodextrine, fructose, sucrose and glucose
  • Isotinic

    Cons:

  • Low amount of electrolytes
  • Low amount of calories
  • Osmolality of 325
  • No option for protein
  • No adjustability for personal nutritional requirements and preferences
  • Taste over extended periods and when warm

  • Notes: ENERVIT was started in Italy and used heavily by the European cycling community. It is an excellent product and based on sound science. It has diverse carbs leading to increased absorption (although too few calories for endurance events), and a complete profile of electrolytes.

    The main drawback is there is no adjustability other than putting more or less powder in your bottle. It is also hard to find in the States being a European based company.




    Hammer Nutrition

    Pros:

  • Contains complete electrolyte profile
  • HEED is Isotonic
  • Hammer is a longtime suporter of endurance athletics and their nutrition

    Cons:

  • Taste, especially when the product is warm. While we are aware this is subjective, it is a comment we hear over and over from Hammer users.
  • Cost, very expensive for a generic product
  • Difficult system to use under stressful racing and training conditions. Must juggle salt pills while racing and training to make the system work.
  • Contains only a complex carbohydrate potentially reducing your calorie intake by up to 30%
  • No adjustability for calories and electrolytes other than adding more scoops.

  • Notes: In talking to athletes at races all over the World there are two consistent things that I hear about Hammer Products. They can work well….but for many athletes the taste is tough after they get warm and after an extended period of using the products. It is difficult to use their products while training and racing. You need to juggle multiple drinks (HEED and Perpeptuem for example) and also keep swallowing electrolytes at the same time. Hammer is a quality company that supports the endurance community so it is hard for me to say too many things negative about their product line. Prior to INFINIT Nutrition, Hammer was the closest thing to a customizable nutritional system with their diverse line of products. INFINIT Nutrition personnel have used their products in several Ironman races, Mountain Biking and Adventure Racing events. The biggest issue for us is the difficulty of juggling different powders and pills during racing and training. There is nothing less appealing than having to remember that you need to swallow a pill 3 to 10 hours into racing. At that point my brain is mush and I really do not want to have to think about anything other than putting one foot in front of the other. The second is that their products can be based on the best intentions but if they do not taste good DURING EXERCISE then you are not going to drink them. If you don’t take your nutrition, well……I don’t need to tell you what happens. Lastly, but maybe most important for the racer, the use of a singular carbohydrate source reduces your ability to oxidize carbohydrates by almost 30%! This means that if you use Hammer’s HEED you might be able to absorb 250 calories per hour. If you were using a product that contained multiple carbohydrates of both complex and simple sugars (such as glucose, sucrose and/or fructose) you could absorb well over 300 calories. The ability to take in more calories can lead to improved endurance and performance.


                     

                     

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