Results 1 to 21 of 21
  1. #1
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Posts
    95

    sports drink: lowest sugar and GI?

    Hey All - has anyone looked into this. Looking for the lowest sugar/GI riding drink for endurance calories and energy. I've been using cytomax for years but I'm trying to cut back on all sugars in my diet. I still need something for those 90 minute+ rides. I don't care what it tastes like! Thanks.

    Chris
    Last edited by cjcrawford; 04-19-2011 at 06:02 PM.

  2. #2
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Posts
    637
    Sure, it's called Water. Works great.

  3. #3
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Posts
    17
    Checkout HEED by Hammer Nutrition. 2g of sugar per 100 cal.

  4. #4
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Posts
    13
    Quote Originally Posted by cc mtb
    Checkout HEED by Hammer Nutrition. 2g of sugar per 100 cal.
    One more vote for Heed from me.

    I use two scoops of Heed in a 24 oz. bottle per hour; this amounts to 200 calories along with 52 grams of carbohydrates of which 4 grams are sugars.

    On the other hand, Cytomax recommends 1.5 scoops in 15 oz. of water but recommends drinking 20 oz. per hour; this amounts to 2 scoops which is 180 calories along with 44 grams of carbohydrates of which 22 grams are sugars...
    Cor

  5. #5
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Posts
    1,297
    Does it really matter if the carb is a sugar or not?

  6. #6
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Posts
    13
    Quote Originally Posted by flargle
    Does it really matter if the carb is a sugar or not?
    Some may say that Hammer Nutrition is biased towards their own products, but you might find the following article interesting:

    Article location: http://www.hammernutrition.com/knowl...ibrary-section
    SIMPLE SUGARS AND COMPLEX CARBOHYDRATES - AN INCOMPATIBLE COMBINATION

    If you look on a container of a Hammer Nutrition fuel you'll find something that you'll probably not see on another energy drink or gel, a warning. For example, on a container of HEED you'll find these words: "Do not combine HEED with any product containing simple, refined sugars. Negative side effects may occur." Similarly, you'll find the following on a container of Perpetuem: "WARNING: Do not combine Perpetuem with any product containing simple, refined sugars."

    What's up with that? Why are we so adamant about not combining simple sugars with complex carbs? Well, the reason for that is simple: we want you to enjoy your workout or race, we want you to achieve your best possible results, and we want you to do that without having stomach issues such as bloating, cramping, diarrhea, and a host of others. However, when you consume a simple sugar fuel at or near the same time as any of the Hammer Nutrition fuels (which contain no added simple sugars) you very much put your workout and race, and your stomach, in jeopardy.

    Here's the deal: simple sugars (glucose, sucrose, fructose, dextrose, etc) need to be mixed in concentrations no higher than 6-8% in order to achieve an acceptable absortion osmolar value of body fluids (280-303 mOsm) and be digested with any efficiency. That's it. The problem is that a 6-8% solution is a pretty weak mix and will only yield about 100 or so calories an hour, which is inadequate for maintaining optimal energy production. Some athletes realize that and try to resolve the problem by making a double or triple strength batch of their simple sugar product. Unfortunately, that solution is now far too concentrated, it's much higher than 6-8% and, unless more water is consumed or added to the mix (at which point the athlete might very well be flirting with over hydration) that concentrated simple sugar solution will not pass the gastric channels. Energy production is compromised and stomach distress is sure to follow.

    The same problem occurs when an athlete combines a simple sugar fuel with a complex carbohydrate fuel. The beauty of complex carbs is that they will match body fluid osmolality, not at a 6-8% solution, but a more concentrated 15-18% solution. Even at this seemingly too-high concentration complex carbohydrates (such as maltodextrins/glucose polymers) will empty the stomach at the same efficient rate as normal body fluids and provide substantially more calories (up to three times more) than simple sugar mixtures will. However, when simple sugars and complex carbs are consumed together or near each other, it increases the solution concentration beyond what either source can be efficiently digested at. In other words, when you consume simple sugars and complex carbohydrates together or within close proximity of each other you negate the efficient digestibility of either source. Once again, energy production will be compromised and a variety of stomach issues are likely to occur.

    SUMMARY:

    • If the athlete consumes a simple sugar fuel the body will only permit 6-8% of it in solution into circulating serum for fuel replacement.

    • Complex carbohydrate fuels are easily and more-rapidly absorbed in a 15-18% solution. More calories are absorbed faster, and are available for energy production, from complex carbohydrates than simple sugar.


    The higher the simple sugar content, the higher the solution osmolality, the less of it is absorbed immediately. The longer the chain of sugars linked together as a complex carbohydrate the more of it is absorbed in higher solution because its osmolality is closer to that of body fluids. Therefore, the ideal carbohydrate source for athletes is long-chain complex carbohydrates, which is what all the Hammer Nutrition fuels are comprised of.

    BOTTOM LINE: You don't want nor need to consume ANY simple sugars with any of the Hammer fuels. The Hammer fuels will meet all your energy needs and you won't have to worry about any stomach issues that can occur when you consume simple sugars with them.
    Cor

  7. #7
    mtbr member
    Reputation: LATAH_M.E.'s Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Posts
    39

    Not HEED!

    Quote Originally Posted by cc mtb
    Checkout HEED by Hammer Nutrition. 2g of sugar per 100 cal.
    Heed has the highest Glycemic Index of all the sports drinks. On the hammer forum, Steve actually admitted that the Glycemic Index of Heed is almost 150.

    My body has a strict aversion to high glycemic index foods (highly reactive) so Heed and other Hammer products are worse than nothing. Maltodextrin may be a long chain "complex" carb but the rapid rise in blood sugar that it creates can cause a instant and powerful insulin response that may crash your blood sugar level. After reading all of the vast info on the Hammer site a few years ago, I thought that their products would work very well for my body, but the marketing doesn't quite match the results. I am probably an exception to most people, but the OP probably has the same problem that I do.

    I need to have Low-GI intake when riding, and I have tried almost everything out there. My testing has proven that solid food is better than liquid. At the top of my list are Balance Bars and bananas, which work the best for me. For liquid carbs, powdered Gatorade mixed weak or G2 actually work pretty well for me in short events, but not anything over 2-3 hours.

    BTW...the lowest GI sports drink is All-sport, if you can still find it.

    Check out this site. http://www.glycemicindex.com/

  8. #8
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Posts
    13
    My earlier posts did not take into account any special medical conditions that the OP might have. I thought that he was trying to minimize his intake of simple sugars.

    Upon re-reading the original post I now see that the author seems to be concerned about the Glycemic Index (GI) as well.

    I normally tend to put more value on the Glycemic Load (GL) of something as opposed to the Glycemic Index, but that is another discussion... Check out http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Glycemic_load to find out a bit more about Glycemic Load.

    Finally, the following might be interesting for those of us who are lucky enough not to have to worry about reactions to high GI food items:

    Glycemic Index

    People often ask about the Glycemic Index (GI) of various carbohydrates and how those figures relate to fueling for endurance exercise. Here’s the scoop: GI rates the speed at which the body breaks down a carbohydrate into glucose. The lower the GI, the slower the process, and therefore the more stable the energy release. For food eaten at times other than exercise and recovery, GI is an important dietary factor, and we recommend eating foods with a low–to–middle GI rating.

    However, during and immediately following exercise, a high–GI carbohydrate—one that elevates blood sugar levels rapidly—is desirable, as long as you keep caloric intake within approximately 280 cal/hour, as hormones associated with sympathetic nervous system activity will inhibit GI impact on insulin release. Negative diet/health–specific effects associated with consumption of high GI carbohydrates are not a concern during and immediately after exercise; high GI carbs actually perform better than low GI carbs at these times.

    Long–chain, high–GI maltodextrins have a GI value of about 130, compared to glucose (100) or sucrose (62). This means that maltodextrins raise blood insulin more effectively than simple sugars, but without the rapid and precipitous drop that is a common (and deleterious) effect of simple sugars. Also, as mentioned earlier, maltodextrins allow you to absorb a greater volume of calories than you can from simple sugars.
    Cor

  9. #9
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Posts
    82
    I have been making up my own drinks with a mix of glucose and maltdextrin (at about 100cal each) plus some salts, amino acids and flavoring. This combo is not to sweet to my taste but that is subjective.

    Some things to consider when making your own endurance brew, as stated above to high a concentration of sugar may cause gastric distress. Another thing to consider is absorption rates of various sugars (glucose, fructose, maltdextrin, ect). There are max absorption rates in the GI tract, excess carbs will go undigested.

  10. #10
    Team Awesome
    Reputation: playpunk's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Posts
    939
    I really, really, really like Carbo-Rocket, which is partially sweetened with fructose. It doesn't kill my gut. Half-Evil (CR 333) probably has the lowest GI of all - because there is quite a bit of protein in it, as well.

  11. #11
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Posts
    95
    My OP was motivated by three things:

    1. cut down on sugars to help curb appetite swings to lose that 6 lbs I can never lose.

    2. Overall sensitivity and big energy swings after sugar/carbs (i.e. can't keep my eyes open at 3 after eating pasta lunch at 1)

    3. New axis of evil identified by big Sunday NYT article on sugar research (fructose = bad, glucose slightly better, all excess sugars leading to insulin resistance otherwise known as metabolic syndrome with subsequent high levels of insulin possibly pleasing cancer cells.

    I am confused about the high GI of HEED (maltodextrins) given that there is no fructose in its metabolism. I'm also confused about sugar/insulin metabolism during heavy exercise.
    Anyway, it's just another little yuppie sports obsession - but I can't help myself. I do know that calories on the ride keep my energy up. thanks for the inputs!

    Chris

  12. #12
    Team Awesome
    Reputation: playpunk's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Posts
    939
    I *think* and I am not a nutritionist, or expert, or anything, but the calories that you take in during exercise function mostly as a wick to your fat stores. You can only take in 300ish calories an hour while biking (at least that's about my limit) but are burning in excess of 800.

    That would burn through your glycogen stores pretty quickly. Carbs ignite your fat - and I'm pretty sure while exercising your insulin response is different, but I don't have any proof of this, or studies I could cite to.

    I straight up hate HEED - I think it tastes terrible and it makes my stomach blow up. I like hammergel though... Go figure.

  13. #13
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Fakie1999's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Posts
    891
    Quote Originally Posted by playpunk
    I straight up hate HEED - I think it tastes terrible and it makes my stomach blow up. I like hammergel though... Go figure.
    I also dont like heed. But, I do use hammer gel. I tried using infinit too. Made a custom batch. Seemed to work pretty good for me. A little pricey though...

  14. #14
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Posts
    82
    Fructose seems to be popular in sports drinks these days. The therory goes that that are maximum absorption rates of different carbohyrates (i.e. glucose and fructose) in the intestine. By having fructose and glucose (dextrose and/or maltdextrin) one can increase the overall absorption of carbohyrate therefore increasing the amount of fuel to do work. OK, I am somewhat convinced on the literature supporting this. What I am not totally convinced on is that all of this fuel, once absorbed, will provide engergy (fuel) for what an endurance athelete needs because fructose is only metabolized in the liver, whereas glucose is metabolized in the liver and muscle. Since the endurance athelte is primarily supplying fuel for work in the muscle I am not convinced on the value of fructose.

    I combine dextrose with matdextrin to provide simple and complex carbohyrate that is completly glucose and glucose polymer based and so far it is working pretty well, performance and taste wise.

    I am trying to find better flavoring agents. Right now I am using Kool Aide flavoring, but it is a little bit on the artificial side with the after taste. Anyone using something else?

  15. #15
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Posts
    95
    Hi Wavewagon - what are you using for dextrose/glucose in your drink?

    Chris

  16. #16
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Posts
    82
    Quote Originally Posted by cjcrawford
    Hi Wavewagon - what are you using for dextrose/glucose in your drink?

    Chris
    Now dextrose. It's sold on various body building nutrition websites. Just Google Now dextrose and you will find some vendors. It should only be about $2-3/lb, pretty cheap and cheaper the more bulk you buy.

  17. #17
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Posts
    32
    cranksports E-Gel. It's main selling point is less sugar. their website will compare E-Gel between all others. Comes is Gu and Drink. I love the stuff.

  18. #18
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Posts
    285
    Quote Originally Posted by cruiten
    Some may say that Hammer Nutrition is biased towards their own products, but you might find the following article interesting:

    I wonder where hammer is getting their information as I've seen several studies that have shown a glucose/fructose combination to be superior to maltodextrin as far as absorption rate.


    Also to the poster questioning fructose and its metabolism in the liver.. liver glycogen is a major source of energy during an endurance event.(also, during recovery the faster the liver glycogen stores are replenished, the faster muscle glycogen stores are replenished)

  19. #19
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Posts
    82
    Also to the poster questioning fructose and its metabolism in the liver.. liver glycogen is a major source of energy during an endurance event.(also, during recovery the faster the liver glycogen stores are replenished, the faster muscle glycogen stores are replenished)[/QUOTE]

    My point about fructose was that it is only metabolized in the liver and not in the muscle. Since the muscle tissue is doing the work during exercise I would hypothesis it is best to give your body carbohydrate that can be metablized in that tissue (i.e. glucose). It is true gycogen is stored in the liver. Glycogen is also stored in muscle and broken down to glucose when glucose is depleted allowing for glycolysis to continue.

  20. #20
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Posts
    285
    half of your body's glycogen stores are in your liver, not your muscles. You need liver glycogen during a race/workout. Saying that it is only metabolized in the liver is misleading, in the liver it is converted to glucose, then converted to liver glycogen, then release to the bloodstream(if needed) but because of enzyme kinetics it happens faster than glucose/malto digestion.

    The vast majority of energy used during endurance work is provided from sources outside of the muscle cells

  21. #21
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Posts
    82
    Quote Originally Posted by Bioteknik
    half of your body's glycogen stores are in your liver, not your muscles. You need liver glycogen during a race/workout. Saying that it is only metabolized in the liver is misleading, in the liver it is converted to glucose, then converted to liver glycogen, then release to the bloodstream(if needed) but because of enzyme kinetics it happens faster than glucose/malto digestion.

    The vast majority of energy used during endurance work is provided from sources outside of the muscle cells
    My intent was not to mislead anyone but to engage in discussion and learn what others have found to work most effectively and gain understanding why. I do understand the importance of glycogen and the benefits of training in improving the stores of glycogen in the muscle and the liver. You got me thinking so I revisted my biochem text (Voet and Voet) to refresh my understanding of fructose metabolism via glycolisis. Fructose can enter glycolysis in the muscle in a one step reaction via hexokinase (I stand corrected). It is in the liver where the metabolism is different. In the liver six enzymatic reactions are required for fructose to enter the glycolysis pathway.

    I would be intersted in any references you have come across showing that fructose metabolism is more efficient in vivo than glucose? I was considering adding fructose to my drink blend but I have not found any convincing data to support a significant performance benefit but I am open and very interested in learning if there is one.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •