A promising ingredient for gaming supplements

Brainberry® – A promising ingredient for gaming supplements

Brainberry® – A promising ingredient for gaming supplements

Last updated: May 17th, 2024

January 11th, 2022

Brainberry® is an Aronia melanocarpa extract that provides an innovative and natural way to boost gaming performance in a safe and effective way. If you plan to get rid of typical sugar- and stimulant-loaded supplements and energy drinks, Brainberry® may be the healthier alternative you are looking for. Thanks to its high content in functional anthocyanins, it promises to enhance gamers’ experience by providing sustained crash-free energy, as well as clinically proven brain benefits. Read more about why this ingredient is important for your gaming supplement!

A promising ingredient for gaming supplements

Why are supplements relevant for gaming?

Gaming has grown exponentially over the last few years, not only in amateur gamers but also in professional ones– eSports.

If you are a gamer, you may have already noticed that gaming requires an incredible number of mental skills. Indeed, gaming is continuous and with very few breaks. Therefore, you need to manage a high cognitive workload, especially if your session lasts for an extended period of time.

Moreover, the visual-spatial skills are essential. These abilities allow you to analyse, recognize and rapidly respond to changes on the screen. In addition, as gaming sessions can last for hours, enhanced attention and focus are crucial. You need to have the skills to stay focused and alert, without getting sleepy and distracted.

Lastly, when gaming, it is important that you manage emotions, such as anger, anxiety and stress, as these can negatively impact your performance.

Even though nutrition has been often overlooked by most gamers, the supplement industry for this segment is growing exponentially, showing that more and more attention is being paid to this important aspect.

Over the last year, several brands have launched gaming formulas on the market and supplement use is continuously increasing amongst gamers looking to up their gaming performance. There is a wide range of products tailored to gamers, ranging from powders to capsules, functional drinks and even gummies.

Whether you are a competitive gamer or not, taking care of your body and mind through proper nutrition, supplements, and rest can yield the best results.

The main problem with most gaming supplements and energy drinks

Supplements have the potential to enhance your cognitive performance when gaming. As mentioned, together with the increased number of gamers, gaming supplement and energy drink interest and consumption have significantly grown in the last years.

However, many of these products contain high amounts of caffeine and sugar. High intakes of these two compounds are generally associated with negative health effects.

After a high caffeine intake, you may experience tachycardia, jitters, headaches or disrupted sleep [1, 2, 3]. In fact, excessive caffeine consumption can negatively impact brain performance. On top of this, high caffeine consumption during the teenage years is associated with an increased risk of suffering from anxiety disorders in adulthood [4].

On the other hand, a high sugar intake may lead to unhealthy weight gain and dental caries, both undesired health effects. Moreover, high sugar spikes in the blood are often followed by an energy crash, which is not ideal when you need to be focused.

If you plan to get rid of typical sugar- and stimulant-loaded supplements and energy drinks, Brainberry® may be the healthier alternative you are looking for.

What is Brainberry®?

Brainberry® is an Aronia melanocarpa extract, standardized for high levels of the anthocyanin cyanidin-3-O-galactoside. This ingredient is clinically validated to improve focus and psychomotor control.

The consumption of anthocyanins has been associated with improved cognition skills, such as memory, attention and psychomotor speed [5, 6, 7].

The active cyanidins present in Aronia berry extract in the form of cyanidin-3-O-galactoside can cross the blood-brain barrier and contribute to brain perfusion.

In the hippocampus, cyanidin-3-O-galactoside lowers acetylcholine esterase activity, which increases acetylcholine, resulting in neuronal signalling. This leads to faster and more accurate reactions due to improved visual processing speed and psychomotor control.

In addition, Brainberry® is water-soluble, easy to formulate and has a pleasant taste. Its possible applications include liquid forms (e.g. ready-to-drink formulas), chewable tablets, gummies, effervescent tablets, stick packs and capsules.

What makes Brainberry® an ideal ingredient for gaming supplements?

Brainberry® is the ideal ingredient for gaming supplements for several reasons:

• 100% natural. It is extracted from high-quality Aronia berries from the Baltics resulting in a completely natural ingredient.

• Clinically proven. It has been validated in 3 randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trials.

• Increased visual processing speed. Its hero compound, cyanidin-3-O-galactoside, significantly improves psychomotor control, enhancing eye-hand coordination.

• Tested in gamers. It has been successfully tested in a consumer study with active gamers.

• Low dosage and stimulant-free. The recommended daily dose is 65 mg. It does not contain stimulants, which are usually accompanied by undesired side effects. This makes it a healthier option compared to other solutions with high stimulants.

• High bioavailability. The bioavailability of the active compound in Brainberry®, cyanidin-3-O-galactoside, has been evaluated and demonstrated rapid absorption [8].

• Easy to formulate. Thanks to its excellent solubility and pleasant taste, it can be included it in a wide range of forms (e.g. drinks, gummies, capsules…).

Research with Brainberry®

Double-blind placebo-controlled trial

Brainberry® has been investigated in the first-ever study to link Aronia berry extract to improved cognitive performance. A 12-week double-blind placebo-controlled clinical study that included 101 subjects linked Aronia berry extract (Brainberry®) to a significant increase in psychomotor speed, eye-hand coordination, and focus.

After only 6 weeks of supplementation with 65 mg of Brainberry® daily, a significant improvement in psychomotor speed was observed, with even a further increase for the rest of the trial (12 weeks).

Brainberry psychomotor speed result

After 12 weeks, concentration was increased by 43% in the group supplemented with 65 mg of Brainberry® [9].

Brainberry focus result

Short-term improvements due to Brainberry®

More recently, a new clinical study has been released investigating the short-term effects of Brainberry® on psychomotor speed and BDNF concentration [10].

Participants in the intervention group showed a significant improvement in reaction time compared to the control group.

Moreover, serum BDNF concentrations were significantly higher with 5.7% in the intervention group after 1-week Brainberry® intake (p<0.05). BDNF is a protein responsible for neuronal survival and growth, essential for learning and memory [11] and highly relevant for the purpose of this research. Its increase showcases Brainberry®’s potential to support young adults in their daily activities such as learning and working.

Consumer study with active gamers

Additionally, a consumer study was conducted on active gamers using Brainberry®. 21 healthy young recreational gamers consumed 65 mg of Brainberry® daily for 7 days.

After just one dose of Brainberry®, participants successfully reported a significant improvement in the most relevant measures for gaming performance, such as eye-hand coordination, focus, reaction time and energy.

As gamers need fast-acting noticeable effects, the significant improvements in eye-hand coordination, focus, energy and reaction after a single dose, confirmed the effectiveness of Brainberry®.

What’s perhaps even more important, is that these improvements were sustained after one week of supplementation.

Brainberry gamer study results

As mentioned before, mood is also key during a gaming session. In fact, not being able to deal with difficult emotions (i.e. anger, stress, anxiety) that are likely to arise while competing, negatively impacts performance. Interestingly, the participants in the study reported an improvement in mood parameters after one week of supplementation with Brainberry®.

Another important outcome to point out is that supplementation with Brainberry® did not have any negative effects on fatigue, sleep quality and anxiety levels. It is well-known that these types of complaints are frequently reported by subjects (often gamers) who consume large quantities of sugar- and stimulant-loaded energy drinks.

The bottom line

Brainberry® is an Aronia melanocarpa extract that provides an innovative and healthy solution to boost gaming performance in a natural and safe way. Thanks to its high content in functional anthocyanins, it promises to enhance gamers’ experience by providing sustained, crash-free energy and clinically proven brain benefits.

Brainberry® is the perfect alternative to supplements and energy drinks that are high in sugar and caffeine. It allows limiting these compounds in your diet while offering sustained crash-free energy, as well as clinically proven brain benefits.


Hesperian supports mitochondrial function

How can we support mitochondrial function?

How can we support mitochondrial function?

Maastricht, 14th April, 2024

Supporting mitochondrial function is essential for maintaining overall health. Mitochondria serve as the cell’s powerhouses, responsible for energy production. Thus, maintaining mitochondrial health is key to cellular vitality and well-being.

Hesperian supports mitochondrial function

The Key to Enhanced Mitochondrial Function

Hesperidin, a flavonoid abundant in citrus fruits (1), exerts multiple positive effects within cells. It acts as an effective scavenger of free radicals, safeguarding cells from oxidative damage. Specifically, hesperidin impacts mitochondrial function through several pathways:

 

Enhanced Efficiency: Research suggests hesperidin can boost mitochondrial efficiency, leading to improved cellular energy production (2).

Mitochondrial Protection: Hesperidin’s antioxidant properties are pivotal in shielding mitochondria from oxidative damage. It scavenges harmful radicals and helps preserve mitochondrial integrity, preventing dysfunction induced by oxidative stress (3).

Improved Resilience: Studies suggest hesperidin enhances mitochondrial resilience against various stressors, including environmental toxins and metabolic challenges (3). By reinforcing mitochondria’s adaptive capabilities, hesperidin supports overall cellular health and longevity.

Reduced Inflammation: Chronic inflammation can compromise mitochondrial function and induce cellular damage. Hesperidin’s anti-inflammatory properties help mitigate inflammation, indirectly supporting mitochondrial health (4).

Cardiovascular Benefits: Some research indicates hesperidin may support cardiovascular health by enhancing mitochondrial function in cardiac muscle cells (5), potentially improving heart function and overall cardiovascular wellness.

Incorporating hesperidin-rich foods or supplements into your diet may provide a natural means to support mitochondrial health and enhance overall well-being.

 

How to Support Mitochondrial Health?

Various lifestyle choices can elevate hesperidin levels in the body, promoting overall health:

  • Dietary Choices: Consuming a diet abundant in citrus fruits is the primary strategy to boost hesperidin intake (6). Oranges, lemons, and grapefruits are excellent sources of this flavonoid. Incorporating these fruits into daily meals or snacks can significantly elevate hesperidin levels.
  • Fresh and Whole Foods: Opt for fresh and minimally processed foods to maximize hesperidin content (7). Freshly squeezed citrus juices and whole citrus fruits contain higher hesperidin levels than packaged or processed alternatives.
  • Cooking Methods: Choose cooking methods that preserve hesperidin content. Lightly steaming or stir-frying vegetables retains more hesperidin compared to boiling, which can leach out the flavonoid.
  • Supplementation: Hesperidin supplements, available as capsules or tablets, offer a concentrated source for those not getting enough through diet alone (8).
  • Physical Activity: Regular exercise can increase the bioavailability of flavonoids like hesperidin. Exercise improves blood circulation and metabolism, potentially enhancing hesperidin absorption and utilization.

 

Conclusion

Overall, hesperidin emerges as a valuable natural compound with the potential to support mitochondrial health and counteract oxidative stress-related disorders. Incorporating hesperidin supplementation or making dietary changes to increase hesperidin intake can further amplify these positive effects.


Increase endurance during sports

How to increase endurance performance during sport

How to increase endurance performance during sport

Last updated: April 5th, 2024

April 14th, 2022

Do you experience an overall lack of energy during sports activities? Then it’s time to increase your endurance performance during physical activity. In this article, we will explain what endurance is and why it is important for you. Additionally, you will discover which nutrients and supplements can support your diet, boost your energy levels, help you recover faster, and enhance your overall performance during your training.

Increase endurance during sports

Endurance performance in different sports

Endurance is the ability to sustain an activity for extended periods of time and usually relates to aerobic or anaerobic exercise [1].

Aerobic endurance applies to sports like long-distance running or swimming where athletes exercise for extended periods. In this type of exercise, the body relies on supplying nutrients and oxygen to working muscles.

On the other hand, anaerobic endurance is related to high-intensity exercises that may last minutes such as weightlifting. In these cases, a different type of endurance (strength) is necessary to achieve the maximum number of sets and reps in a workout plan.

During anaerobic exercise, many athletes also focus on activities that include resistance with the body (calisthenics) or equipment such as weight machines and barbell exercises.

The conclusion in each case is that a high volume of training puts extreme demands on the body from a physical (strength & power), mental (focus) and energy (endurance) retention standpoint.

Why is endurance performance important?

Endurance can benefit your overall wellness by improving heart health, lowering cholesterol levels and blood pressure, preventing injuries and controlling weight [2].

As it concerns your performance skills, studies have shown that endurance helps athletes develop skills like agility, speed, power, and strength [3]. More specifically, it is an efficient way to maintain energy levels before fatigue sets in.

As an example, you can consider a basketball player who wants to jump for rebounds in the final minutes of an intense game or even a marathon athlete who needs to run the last kilometres of a demanding race.

Thus, endurance can keep your circulatory system healthy and make the difference between winning or losing in different sports.

Ways to boost your endurance during sport

Boosting endurance during sports involves focusing on two primary aspects: enhancing training capacities and taking the right nutrition.

To improve training capacities, it is crucial to gradually extend exercise durations [3]. This can be achieved by progressively increasing the duration or distance covered during training sessions over weeks, months, or even years. Additionally, for anaerobic exercises, endurance performance can be enhanced by increasing the number of repetitions with lighter weights.

However, nutrition is also an essential factor that influences the endurance of athletes. More specifically, it has been proven that nutritional supplements play a vital role in enhancing athletic performance and endurance, even though there is a lack of knowledge of their use [4]. Thus, athletes need reliable information regarding supplements they can trust and use in their daily demanding lives.

In the next section, we will focus on the ingredients that a supplement should include for increasing endurance performance.

Ingredients for endurance

L-Glutamine

Even if the body can synthesize glutamine, its levels might not be sufficient for athletes. The body can become depleted of glutamine in the case of high-intensity training [5] and as a result, athletes seek to increase the dosage intake by supplementation.

L-Glutamine accelerates muscle recovery while it helps athletes to exercise harder. The increased sodium uptake reduces muscle fatigue and breakdown while maintaining muscle growth.

The recommended dosage for L-Glutamine is between 3 to 6 grams.

Carbohydrates

As mentioned previously, athletes need endurance for different types of training. For example, marathon runners exercise for extended periods of time and require a lot of carbohydrates to sustain their performance.

Any athlete who exercises for more than 60 to 90 minutes requires carbohydrate intake during their performance to sustain sufficient energy levels for fueling muscles since their glycogen stores may only last a limited time.

A combination of carbohydrates with a small amount of protein has been shown to prevent muscle damage during endurance exercise efficiently [6].

The daily recommended dosage for carbohydrates depends on the type of exercise. Overall, the following is advised:

  • Moderate endurance exercise (1 hour per day): 5-7 g/kg of body weight daily.
  • Moderate to high-intensity endurance exercise (1-3 hours per day): 6-10 g/kg of body weight daily.
  • Moderate to high-intensity endurance exercise (4-5 hours per day). 10-12 g/kg of body weight daily.

Caffeine

Caffeine is a stimulant that athletes can use to boost their energy temporarily [7]. More specifically, it can increase heart rates when athletes feel fatigued and has been proven to improve endurance performance [6].

Even if caffeine improves athletes’ perception of effort, it is important to be aware of the side effects it might have in higher intakes [8]. Some of the side effects of too much caffeine are anxiety, insomnia, muscle breakdown, rapid heart rate and high blood pressure.

It is also possible that caffeine has the opposite result where consuming many caffeinated beverages is followed by fatigue [9].

The recommended clinical dose of caffeine is between 3 and 6 mg/kg.

Citrus flavonoids (hesperidin) – Power and endurance in one ingredient

To increase your endurance, strength, and power during highly intense training, you should consider citrus flavonoids (hesperidin). BioActor has developed a proprietary ingredient that is optimized for bioavailability and performance, backed up by two clinical studies: WATTS’UP®.

WATTS’UP® was studied for its beneficial effects on endurance performance and high-intensity performance at a daily dose of 400-500 mg.

The first clinical trial was conducted at the Dutch Olympic training facility. It confirmed that WATTS’UP® is capable of significantly improving aerobic power in endurance athletes compared to placebo.

A second clinical trial was tested during the Wingate Anaerobic Test. It confirmed that WATTS’UP® can be very efficient for peak force, anaerobic power, and endurance compared to placebo.

 

In conclusion, proper nutrition in addition to a well-designed training plan, can enhance sport performance and reduce recovery time.

Discover YAMAMOTO’s Success Story

Learn how YAMAMOTO integrated WATTS’UP® into their products, driving remarkable success.

Download

hydration wattsup

WEBINAR: Hydration++ with WATTS'UP® - Watch on demand

WEBINAR: Hydration++

With WATTS’UP®

Are you interested in hydration formulas backed-up by science? At this webinar, we will present WATTS’UP® and the benefits of adding it to your formulation. Find out more about the science behind WATTS’UP® and its formulation possibilities.

WATCH ON DEMAND

Why watch?

 

The market for hydration products is steadily growing and consumer demands shape the market outlook. Due to raising customer awareness regarding health and wellbeing, they are looking for products that contain high-quality and scientifically-backed ingredients to health provide benefits beyond hydration.

Hydration products offering additional benefits are an upcoming trend. Find out how WATTS’UP can be the perfect addition to your hydration formula and add health benefits beyond hydration!

hydration webinar solabia nutrition

Presentation by Marit

10 minutes

EU Hydration Market Insights: expected growth, consumer preferences, product examples

 

Presentation by Yala

10 minutes 

The Science behind WATTS’UP®: Discover the clinical data behind WATTS’UP® and understand the advantages it has to offer for sports performance.

 

Presentation by Valeria

10 minutes

Sales and Formulation possibilities of WATTS’UP®: all you need to know about dose, delivery formats, specifications and more 

WATCH ON DEMAND

Which ingredients shoul be included in a pre-workout formula

Which ingredients should a pre-workout formula include?

The best ingredients for a pre-workout

Last updated: March 6th, 2024

January 13th, 2022

If you are looking for the ideal pre-workout formula, you came to the right place. In this article, we explore the most relevant ingredients that your pre-workout should include to target power, focus and endurance.

Which ingredients shoul be included in a pre-workout formula

Many gym-goers seek pre-workout supplements to enhance performance, but choosing the right ingredients remains a challenge.

In this article, we explore a few effective ingredients to target the 3 main benefits a high-quality pre-workout should provide: power, focus and endurance.

What is a pre-workout?

These formulations are combinations of ingredients, designed to boost energy and performance. That’s why athletes from all disciplines typically consume them shortly before their workout or training.

The goal of consuming these formulas is to enhance acute exercise performance [1]. You can find pre-workouts in different forms, like drinks, gels or capsules, yet ready-to-drink powders are by far the most common format.

Essential aspects of a pre-workout

If you consider consuming a pre-workout to improve your performance, there are a few things to take into account before making a purchase.

Firstly, you want an effective product that delivers three main benefits: power, focus and endurance.

Secondly, choosing a product that provides rapid onset of these effects is important, ideally within 15-30 minutes of intake.

Lastly, it is best to select a formula that contains natural ingredients and avoid consuming high amounts of stimulants like caffeine.

In the next section, we look at the ingredients that you should look for in a pre-workout.

Ingredients for power

These ingredients  enhance muscular strength and power, optimizing performance during workouts [2].

 

Citrulline malate

This ingredient consists of citrulline, a non-essential amino acid, and malic acid, an intermediate in the citric acid cycle.

Citrulline malate may improve blood flow during exercise by augmenting nitric oxide (NO) levels, as citrulline is a NO precursor [3].

Currently, it is unclear whether the performance improvement is linked to this mechanism, but several studies support an improvement in peak power output after citrulline malate consumption [4,5].

 

Creatine

Creatine is one of the most well-researched ingredients in sports nutrition. This ingredient increases intramuscular creatine levels. Short-term energy generation in muscle tissue comes virtually 100% from creatine – the phosphorylated isoform, Cr-P.

Daily intake of 3 g promotes anaerobic performance in the gold standard Wingate Test [6]. Furthermore, researchers found beneficial effects on exercise recovery with creatine intake, reducing exercise-induced muscle damage [7].

Ingredients for focus

These ingredients ensure that you can focus on your movements to execute them with high precision [2]. Focus is commonly referred to as the mind-muscle connection.

 

Brainberry®

If you are looking for an alternative to caffeine to boost your focus, you might want to learn more about Brainberry®.
Brainberry® is a natural Aronia berry extract developed by BioActor to enhance cognitive performance. Research revealed that the consumption of Brainberry® increases focus, psychomotor speed and mental flexibility [8,9].

In particular, a study on 35 professional basketball players, showed important benefits after one week of supplementation. This study highlighted the ability of Brainberry® to significantly enhance cognitive performance and improve basketball-specific skills like shooting, rebounding and dribbling.

Cyanidin-3-O-Galactoside is the active ingredient in Brainberry® and plays an important role in improving brain health and cognitive functions.

Want to know more about Cy3Gal, and how it is involved in brain health? Read this article!

 

Caffeine

Caffeine is another ingredients that is well-researched in sports nutrition [2]. It is known for its ability to provide acute ergogenic effects.
A daily dose of 3 mg/kg bodyweight is linked to improvements in alertness, vigilance, mood and cognitive processes during exercise [10].

However, a comparison between non-caffeine and caffeine-containing pre-workout formulas concluded that the caffeine-containing pre-workout reduces calmness. If you are training in the evening, this might be a reason to pass on caffeine [11].

Ingredients for endurance

These ingredients are important to provide nutrients to feel energized until the end of your workout [2].

 

Beta-alanine

Beta-alanine is a carnosine precursor, a compound that buffers lactate build-up in the muscle tissue, prolonging the feeling of soreness.

It has been shown that 4-6 g of beta-alanine consumption per day for two weeks improves high-intensity exercise performance. Regular consumption maintains a certain level of intramuscular carnosine levels, as beta-alanine is the limiting factor in carnosine production [12].

 

Carbohydrates

Carbohydrates play a crucial role in providing sustained energy levels during prolonged exercises. However, the amount needed depends on the type of exercise [13]. For typical gym sessions lasting between 45 to 120 minutes, consuming a small amount of rapidly absorbed carbohydrates shortly before exercise can be beneficial.

For longer endurance activities, such as marathon training or extended cardio sessions, a larger intake of carbohydrates is necessary to optimize performance [14]. Slow-release carbohydrates could be a consideration for endurance athletes.

Citrus flavonoids – For power and endurance

If you want to take your pre-workout to the next level, an additional ingredient you may want to include in your pre-workout formula is citrus flavonoids (hesperidin).

WATTS’UP® is a natural Citrus sinensis extract researched and developed by BioActor. The recommended daily dose (clinical dose) for this ingredient is 400-500 mg.

Two randomized placebo-controlled clinical trials conducted by BioActor confirmed that WATTS’UP® can significantly improve peak force, endurance capacity and anaerobic power in trained subjects.

Further research revealed that WATTS’UP® works by stimulating nitric oxide (NO) synthesis in blood vessels, thus stimulating vasodilation and better blood flow. [15]

Moreover, it was demonstrated that WATTS’UP® boosts mitochondria efficiency and respiration capacity. This resulted in 33% higher ATP production – the fuel for our muscles [16].

Therefore, WATTS’UP® would be a great addition to any sports nutrition supplement.

Conclusion

In conclusion, pre-workouts are tailored combinations of ingredients aimed at enhancing energy and performance for athleses across various disciplines. Each ingredient serves a specific function, contributing to distinct aspects of sports performance.

Citrulline malate and creatine are dedicated to increase power, whereas Brainberry® and caffeine improve focus. Furthermore, beta-alanine and carbohydrates are valuable ingredients to enhance endurance performance.

Lastly, citrus flavonoids, such as WATTS’UP®, offer a promising dual benefit for any pre-workout formulation by boosting both power and endurance.

Discover YAMAMOTO’s Success Story

Learn how YAMAMOTO integrated WATTS’UP® into their products, driving remarkable success.

Download

hydration sports drinks

How to stay hydrated and increase physical performance?

How to stay hydrated and increase physical performance?

Maastricht, 16th February 2024

Hydration is the key to optimal physical activity. Our bodies work constantly to maintain an internal fluids balance. Effectively managing water loss is crucial for sustaining the body’s health and physical performance. In this blog we explore hydration and sports drinks. How can we stay hydrated and enhance performance?

hydration sports drinks

What is water balance?

When engaging in physical activity, body temperature rises due to increased muscle activity. In response, the body produces sweat to cool down. This process helps regulate body temperature as water and mineral salts evaporate from the skin.

Indeed, water loss during physical activity is a desirable natural process. Its rate varies based on factors such as the intensity and duration of the activity, environmental conditions, and individual differences. On average, an hour of moderate physical activity can cause a person to lose around 0.5 to 1 litre of water (1, 2). Maintaining the water balance in the body is essential to avoid dehydration and optimize overall physical performance.

 

How to maintain a healthy water balance and prevent dehydration?

Dehydration can impact performance of any exercise longer than 15s (3) by affecting endurance, strength, cognitive function, and delaying recovery. Therefore, maintaining a healthy water balance is crucial. Sport drinks are a great choice to solve this issue as they provide plenty of water and supply the electrolytes needed to maintain the body water balance (4).

 

The role of electrolytes

Electrolytes are essential minerals that play a crucial role in maintaining proper hydration and overall bodily function. When we sweat during physical activity or in hot environments, we lose electrolytes along with water. These electrolytes include sodium, potassium, chloride, calcium, and magnesium. Electrolytes help regulate the balance of fluids within the body. Sodium, for example, helps the body retain water, while potassium works to balance sodium levels and regulate fluid distribution within cells (5).

Sports drinks with electrolytes

Depending on their electrolyte concentration, sport drinks can be classified as isotonic, hypertonic, and hypotonic. Each of them serves different purposes. The choice of which type of drink to use depends on individual needs and the type and duration of physical activity.

Hypotonic drinks contain a lower concentration of sugars and electrolytes that the one the body has. Hypotonic drinks are ideal for quick hydration for low duration sports (6).

Isotonic drinks have a concentration of sugars and electrolytes that tries to mimic the body’s concentration and are typically used for electrolytes and water replenishment. They are ideal for endurance events longer than 40 minutes (7).

Lastly, hypertonic drinks contain a higher concentration of electrolytes and sugars than the body does (8). This high dose of electrolytes and sugar is particular useful for long duration sports and is ideal for glycogen stores and fluids replenishment (9).

 

How to improve your standard sports drink beyond electrolytes?

Several beneficial ingredients can be added to a sports drink to enhance its functionality and provide additional benefits to athletes and individuals engaging in physical activity. Here are some examples:

Carbohydrates: Carbohydrates are a primary source of energy for muscles during exercise. Fast absorbed ones like glucose, fructose and maltodextrin are a perfect fit for a sports drink to provide a readily available fuel source (10). On the other hand, adding slow digestible carbohydrates such as isomaltulose or arabinoxylans is also a good strategy to sustain endurance and performance during prolonged activity.

Polyphenols: polyphenols from sources like citrus extracts and Aronia berries can help improve performance by increasing focus, force and endurance.

Caffeine: Caffeine is a stimulant that can enhance mental alertness, focus, and endurance performance. Including caffeine in a sports drink can provide an extra boost of energy and improve exercise performance, particularly during intense workouts or endurance activities.

Vitamins and Minerals: Adding vitamins and minerals such as vitamin C, vitamin E, B-vitamins, and zinc can support overall health, immune function, and recovery from exercise-induced oxidative stress.

Amino Acids: Branched-chain amino acids (BCAAs) such as leucine, isoleucine, and valine may aid in muscle recovery, reduce muscle soreness, and support muscle protein synthesis. Other amino acids like glutamine may help maintain immune function and gut health during intense training.

Adaptogens: Adaptogenic herbs like rhodiola, ginseng, or ashwagandha may help improve resilience to stress, enhance endurance, and support recovery from intense exercise.

Conclusion

Preventing dehydration is crucial for physical performance and subsequent recovery. Choosing the right sports drink with the best quality ingredients according to individual needs is the best strategy to keep hydrated and boost performance.


New Approved Health Claim for Watts'Up®

WATTS’UP® receives an additional approved health claim from Health Canada

Maastricht, 14th February 2024

PRESS RELEASE

Health Canada has issued a new Product Licence for WATTS’UP® and has approved the use of an additional health claim: “Helps to improve average power output during high intensity exercise in moderately trained individuals.

power strength wattsup bioactor solabia

WATTS’UP®, a customized flavonoid extract from sweet orange, has been tested in 2 double-blind placebo-controlled studies. The latest study was conducted in moderately trained men and women and showed a significant improvement in exercise performance with a significant increase in peak force and average 30 seconds power output.

Health Canada has issued a new Product Licence for WATTS’UP® with an enlarged scope. Pursuant to this Product Licence, WATTS’UP® is recommended to be used as “Athletic support” or “Workout/Exercise supplement.”

The following specific claims have been allowed by Health Canada: “Helps to improve average power output during high intensity exercise in moderately trained individuals” ; “Helps improve physical performance during exercise in trained male athletes”; and “Provides antioxidants that help cells to fight against the oxidative effect of free radicals and that helps protect cells and reduce oxidative damage and cell damage caused by free radicals”

The Journal of the International Scoiety of Sports Nutrition has published the results of the latest clinical study with WATTS’UP®. WATTS’UP® is a patent-protected citrus extract with enhanced bioavailability. It was tested in moderately trained athletes (both men and women) and showed a significant increase in power output during the Wingate anaerobic exercise test.

WATTS’UP® can be found on the market in multiple products in the USA, Europe, and Asia. It can be applied in various finished dosage forms, including powders, effervescent tablets, capsules, RTD sachets and beverages.

Feel free to contact us via info@bioactor.com for more information on the possibilities WATTS’UP® has to offer.

Further information can be found on: www.wattsup.eu

 

About Solabia – BioActor

BioActor, a Solabia Nutrition company, based in Maastricht, Netherlands, is a product development company that has developed a range of proprietary bioactive formulations with clinical studies. The company focuses on the development of innovative bioactives that address healthy living and ageing. The goal is to provide the nutrition & healthcare industry with science-based innovations that confer a real health benefit to the consumer.

For further information, see www.bioactor.com


men health

Top 5 ingredients for men's health

Top 5 ingredients for men’s health

October 30th, 2023

Incorporating health ingredients into daily routines helps to support men’s well-being and health. We will provide you with evidence-based recommendations on five key ingredients supporting men’s health and sexual function, including fenugreek seed extract, zinc, B vitamins, pomegranate extract, and hesperidin.

men health

In today’s fast-paced world, prioritizing our health and well-being is becoming more and more important, also for men. As the increasing expectations and pressures of our lives continue to evolve, it is important for men to develop a proactive approach to maintain their physical, mental, and sexual health.

Health ingredients are designed to meet men’s health needs, ensuring that they stay healthy and full of energy. In this article, we will provide evidence-based recommendations on five key ingredients supporting men’s health and sexual function.

Fenugreek seed extract

As men age, they experience a decrease in testosterone levels. This phenomenon is also known as andropause. Testosterone plays a role in many aspects of health, including sexual function, muscle and bone mass, energy levels, and metabolism. One of the ingredients that may help to combat the problems related to andropause is fenugreek seed extract . Fenugreek (Trigonella foenum-graecum) is a very interesting herb with many potential health benefits.

A study performed on 120 healthy men showed that a 12-week supplementation of fenugreek seed extract (600 mg/day) increased testosterone levels and improved sexual function, compared to placebo [1]. Also, supplementation of fenugreek seed extract in healthy male athletes resulted in increased fat-free mass, lean body mass, and elevated testosterone levels compared to placebo [2]. These findings suggest that fenugreek seed extract is a promising ingredient for men’s health, especially in terms of increasing testosterone levels and improving sexual function.

Zinc

Zinc is an essential mineral, which means that it is not produced by the body itself. It plays an important role in many physiological functions, such as supporting the immune system and healing damaged cells. Zinc is a critical mineral for men’s health as even a small deficiency can impact the immune system, cardiovascular health, reproductive function, and fertility [3].

Sufficient intake of zinc contributes to normal fertility and sexual function in males. Low levels of zinc are related to low levels of testosterone. Besides, it is also important for the normal functioning of the immune system, and the maintenance of bone health [4].

Therefore, we can state that zinc is an important mineral that can help men improve their sexual health and energy levels and maintain a healthy immune system.

B Vitamins

B vitamins play a vital role in the human body. They are involved in many important functions. For example, they are crucial for energy production, oxygen support, and bone health.

The vitamin B complex consists of a total of eight B vitamins, with several of them having beneficial effects on men’s health, for example:

Vitamin B12: Adequate levels of vitamin B12 are important for the production of red blood cells, which are responsible for oxygen transport. Also, studies showed that vitamin B12 is important for bone health [5, 6].

Vitamin B9: Vitamin B9, also known as folate, is not only an important vitamin for women but also for men. Research has shown that folate contributes to the reduction of fatigue, which is a common complaint nowadays [7].

Vitamin B6: Vitamin B6 plays a vital role in energy and vitality. Intake of this vitamin contributes to normal energy metabolism. Studies also showed that it leads to a decrease in fatigue and tiredness [8].

Vitamin B5: Pantothenic acid, also known as vitamin B5 is an essential vitamin, which plays a vital role in various functions in the body. It is mainly known for its important role in the metabolism of food, leading to energy production [9].

All in all, B vitamins are important for energy production. Increased energy levels lead to improved stamina and sexual performance.

Pomegranate extract

Pomegranate (Punicagranatum L.) is a fruit that contains lots of healthy phytochemical compounds, such as polyphenols, flavonoids, and nitrates [10]. These phytochemicals have many antioxidant and anti-inflammatory qualities beneficial for men’s health [11].

The polyphenols within pomegranate fruit are the main bioactive compounds responsible for the various health benefits attributed to this extract. The peel of the pomegranate contains the highest amounts of polyphenols. Two of the primary polyphenols in the peel are ellagitannins (punicalagin and punicalin) and ellagic acid [12].

Studies showed that pomegranate extracts are associated with the treatment and prevention of many diseases and disorders in men , such as cardiovascular diseases, infertility, and erectile dysfunction [13, 14, 15]. For example, pomegranate has a positive effect on blood flow, key for erectile function and sexual performance [16].

Hesperidin 

Hesperidin is a bioflavonoid found in citrus fruits, abundant in sweet oranges (Citrus sinensis). After ingestion, hesperidin is converted to hesperetin by the microbiome. Hesperetin is considered the active metabolite of hesperidin and has been shown to have several beneficial health effects for men.

One of the health effects of hesperidin is that it has antioxidant activity, through neutralizing Reactive Oxygen Species (ROS) [17]. This may eventually lead to enhanced overall well-being and an increase in energy when you need it most. This antioxidant activity also has a positive effect on fertility in men, since free radicals (ROS) decrease sperm motility and increase DNA damage [18].

Additionally, hesperidin is known for its positive effect on blood flow. The active ingredient achieves this by increasing the availability of nitric oxide [19]. Eventually, this leads to an improved supply of nutrients and oxygen during physical and sexual activity, and to an improved erectile function.

Actiful®: An ingredient containing hesperidin and punicalagin

Actiful® is a natural orange and pomegranate complex and is standardized for highly bioavailable hesperidin and punicalagin: the primary polyphenols present in sweet orange (Citrus sinensis) and pomegranate peel (Punica granatum).

The health benefits of this ingredient have been scientifically validated and confirmed through multiple randomized double-blind controlled trials. It is clinically proven that Actiful® results in enhanced physical performance in men [20, 21].

Actiful® not only influences physical performance. It also boosts energy levels by targeting the mitochondria within the cells [22]. Additionally, Actiful® has been demonstrated to positively impact mental health [19].

Lastly, it has been shown that Actiful® positively affects blood flow [21], by increasing the availability of nitric oxide. Hereby it promotes improved erectile function in men, leading to longer-lasting erections.

Overall, Actiful® stands as a promising and scientifically backed choice for men aiming to improve their physical performance, sexual function, and overall health.


Watch-Sports-Performance-Webinar-On-Demand

WEBINAR - Sports Performance

WEBINAR – Sports Performance

Product concepts with WATTS’UP® to improve performancein both endurance and strength

March 30th, 2023 at 3PM CEST.

A critical component of athletic performance is nutrition, and there exists a substantial market for supplementation within this domain. Join us while we dive in the clinical evidence supporting the sports performance boosting citrus extract WATTS’UP®, and product formulations with this ingredient. Watch it now on demand!

WATCH ON DEMAND

Sports nutrition is a specialized field that focuses on optimizing the diets of athletes and active individuals to enhance performance and promote recovery. Proper nutrition can help athletes achieve their goals by providing the necessary energy, macronutrients, and micronutrients for their bodies to function at their best.

Supplementation of specific macronutrients is an important way to improve sports performance. It can help boost your energy, increase blood flow and enhance your power output.

Join our webinar and discover the clinical evidence supporting WATTS’UP® and how BioActor’s sweet orange extract can be integrated into effective products targeting sports performance.

Watch now on demand!

WATCH NOW ON DEMAND

Meet the Speakers:

Meet the speakers! Yala-Stevens,-PhD,-Chief-Scientific-Officer-and-Bjarne-Maas,-Marketing-&-Account-Manager

What was discussed during this webinar?

Clinical Research

Presentation by Yala Stevens, PhD – Chief Scientific Officer, who introduced the science behind WATTS’UP® and the clinical trials showing the positive effect of WATTS’UP® on power, peak performance and blood flow.
Duration: 15 minutes

Sports Performance trends & consumer insights

Presentation by Bjarne Maas – Marketing & Account Manager, who discussed the consumer insights and product formulation examples related to sports performance.
Duration: 15 minutes

Q&A session

Duration: 10 minutes

WATCH NOW ON DEMAND

Actiful-physical-and-mental-benefits

Actiful® - New Publication Reveals Physical and Mental Health Benefits in Elderly

Actiful® – New Publication Reveals Physical and Mental Health Benefits in Elderly

Maastricht, The Netherlands, August 29th, 2022

Press release
A new randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled clinical trial with Actiful® was recently published in the Journal of Nutrition, Health & Ageing. The study investigated whether Actiful® improves physical fitness and mental well-being in healthy elderly. Additionally, blood biomarkers for oxidative stress and endothelial function were measured. Key findings of the study were an improvement in handgrip strength, a measure of physical fitness, and psychological functioning facets, such as thinking, memory, learning, and concentration.

Actiful-physical-and-mental-benefits

The study

The new research, published in the Journal of Nutrition Health & Ageing, was conducted by researchers at Maastricht University led by Dr Freddy Troost in collaboration with BioActor, the developer and manufacturer of the branded ingredient, Actiful®.

Actiful® is a citrus flavonoid and pomegranate complex designed to boost vitality and support energy levels for an active lifestyle. The ingredient is standardised for its content in highly bioavailable 2S-hesperidin, an important citrus flavonoid which already showed in previous BioActor studies the efficacy in improving blood flow and sports performances in both highly trained and recreational athletes.

The new study investigated whether daily supplementation with 700mg of Actiful® would affect physical fitness and psychological functioning in a healthy elderly population.

As life expectancy increases rapidly, the elderly population is growing in numbers. Ageing is one of the main risk factors for a wide variety of diseases, such as cardiovascular disease, cognitive decline and reduced physical function. Therefore, strategies to support vitality in senior subjects are becoming increasingly relevant.

 

The methods

The study included 36 active seniors aged between 60-75 years old. The design of the clinical trial was a randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled, crossover study. All participants received both treatments and placebo: four weeks of supplementation with Actiful® and four weeks of supplementation with the placebo, separated by a washout period of 4 to 8 weeks.

During the intervention, participants completed the WHOQOL-100 questionnaire, a list of 100 questions created by the World Health Organisation and validated to assess the quality of life. In addition, a senior fitness test and handgrip measurements were performed, which are validated measures of physical performance.

Furthermore, nitrate levels were measured as a marker of endothelial function. Nitrate is considered an important signalling molecule involved in endothelial function by inducing vasodilation, leading to improved blood flow.

Oxidative stress was also evaluated by determining malondialdehyde (MDA) plasma levels. Oxidative stress is an imbalance between free radicals and antioxidants in your body and can damage cells, proteins and DNA, contributing to ageing.

 

The results

The study results indicate that four weeks of daily Actiful® supplementation significantly improved handgrip strength in healthy elderly. Handgrip strength is an important measure of physical fitness associated with reduced all-cause mortality, as well as increased cognitive function, mobility, and functional status.

According to the researchers, a potential mechanism that might be associated with improving handgrip strength is improved mitochondrial function. In fact, the role of hesperetin – the main metabolite of Actiful®, in mitochondrial functioning, increased intracellular ATP production, and mitochondrial spare capacity was already observed in vitro.

“With age, the number and functionality of mitochondria decreases. Dysfunctional mitochondria have reduced the capacity for producing ATP – our muscles’ principal energy source. Therefore, the next step is to confirm the effect of Actiful® on mitochondrial biogenesis and functionality in humans in vivo”, the researchers commented.

In addition to the handgrip strength, also psychological function improved after the 4 weeks of supplementation with Actiful®.

Specifically, the researchers found a significantly higher score for the treatment group than the placebo in the thinking, memory, learning, and concentration facet. As the quality of life is an important factor in successful ageing, improved psychological functioning is deemed increasingly relevant.

MDA and NO3 were also analysed as a measure of oxidative stress and endothelial functions. After supplementation, plasma MDA decreased compared to the placebo, a sign of improved oxidative stress status.

Finally, higher production of NO3 was observed. NO3 is an important signalling molecule involved in endothelial function by causing vasodilation in smooth muscle cells and can contribute to improving blood flow and exercise capacity, as demonstrated in previous studies.

Overall, the study results suggest that Actiful® consumption results in improved physical performance and better quality of life, which are two crucial factors in successful ageing.

We are pleased with the results of this clinical trial, which includes improvements both in physical fitness and mental well-being, as well as improved oxidative stress markers. These results have piqued our interest regarding potential underlying mechanisms of action, which are currently being investigated in our new clinical trial.” Commented Sanne Ahles – clinical researcher at BioActor.

 

Opportunity for innovation

Actiful® has been developed to support vitality and energy levels contributing to healthy ageing. The active ingredient can already be found in various products on the market worldwide. Actiful® is easy to formulate, and it can be added to a wide variety of dietary supplements in several convenient formats, including gummies, effervescent tablets, capsules, ready-to-use sachets and drinks.

 

About BioActor

BioActor, based at the Maastricht Health Campus, Netherlands, is a life science company that has developed a range of proprietary bioactive ingredients for the nutrition & consumer health industries. The company focuses on the development of plant-based health ingredients for active living and healthy ageing. The goal is to provide the nutrition & consumer health industries with clinically tested innovations that confer a real health benefit to the consumer.

Feel free to contact BioActor via info@bioactor.com for more information on the possibilities that Actiful® has to offer.
Further information can be found on: www.actiful.eu and www.bioactor.com