Real Solutions to Fight Pre Workout Insomnia

Hate sleepless nights on a pre workout supplement?

Pre Workout Insomnia

Although pre workout supplements are often taken for massive energy, focus, motivation, and drive we don’t want this feeling all the time, especially right before bed.

Caffeine is the leading factor that causes insomnia.  Caffeine has a half life of 5 to 7 hours. This means it would take 5 to 7 hours for 50% the caffeine in your body to be processed by the liver and another 8 to 10 hours for 75%. Often people turn to pre workout supplements without caffeine or with a low amount if they workout late.

It goes without saying the less time lapse between stimulation and sleep, the greater chance of sleep deprivation. Pre workout stimulants should be taken 4-6 hours before sleep to help decrease the chance of insomnia.

Optimum Nutrition’s Essential AmiN.O. Energy “Contains 50 mg of caffeine per scoop, so do not consume after 5:00 PM if you have difficulty sleeping.”
BSN’s N.O.-Xplode 2.0 “To avoid sleeplessness, do not consume within 4 hours of bedtime.”
Jim Stoppani’s Pre JYM “To avoid sleeplessness, do not consume within 6 hours of bedtime.”
Gaspari Nutrition’s SuperPump Max “To avoid sleeplessness, do not take within four hours of bedtime.”

6 Sleep Solutions That Really Work

  1. Melatonin
    • Naturally produced in the brain and is one of the most popular sleeping solution.
    • Melatonin regulates the sleeping cycle in the body and production is increased at night and decreased during the day.
    • Sleep Latency has been proven to decrease by 4 minutes.
    • Sleep efficiency increased by 2.2-3.1%.
    • Total sleep duration increased by 12.8-13.7 min.
    • Most effective to help keep regulation of ‘your body’s internal clock’.
  2. Magnesium
    • This muscle relaxer is used to benefit workouts and as a sleep aid.
    • Those who have very tight or restless muscles at night would benefit the most from the relaxing properties of magnesium.
    • During a workout it increases peak oxygen uptake and total work output during work capacity tests. As magnesium levels decrease during exercise heart rate increases and oxygen use becomes less efficient.
  3. Valerian root extract
    • This is another natural sleeping aid proven safe for short-term use but lacks long term use studies.
    • Can improve the quality of sleep and slightly reduce asleep latency.
  4. Passionflower (Passiflora incarnata)
    • Relieves restlessness and irritability and significantly increases sleep quality.
  5. Chamomile Tea
    • Helps sooth upset stomachs, sore throat, and endues sleep.
    • This is most beneficial when sick.
  6. Kava
    • Can help reduce anxiety and stress.
    • Used as a pain relevant and healing agent.



References

Bent, Stephen. “Result Filters.” National Center for Biotechnology Information. U.S. National Library of Medicine, Dec. 2006. Web. 20 Mar. 2014.

Brzezinski, Amnon. “Result Filters.” National Center for Biotechnology Information. U.S. National Library of Medicine, Feb. 2005. Web. 20 Mar. 2014.

Rivara, S. “Result Filters.” National Center for Biotechnology Information. U.S. National Library of Medicine, 2008. Web. 20 Mar. 2014.

Ngan, A. “Result Filters.” National Center for Biotechnology Information. U.S. National Library of Medicine, Aug. 2011. Web. 20 Mar. 2014.

Craze Pre Workout Pulled From Shelves

Why is Craze being Pulled from Shelves?

Company’s are unsure whether ingredients in Craze are safe. Founder of Driven Sports, Matt Cahill has a criminal record of distributing risky substances in the market. Driven Sports is doing everything they can to prove Craze is safe but things don’t look good for this product line.

Driven Sports launched in July 2008 and grew fame quickly after the release of its flagship pre workout Craze in late 2011. Most users strive for it’s intense focus and long lasting energy. Craze is based off of an ingredient called dendrobium extract.

Drive Sports Craze Pulled from Shelves

Labs Test Positive for Amphedimines

A methamphetamine analog (N,α-diethyl-phenylethylamine) identified in a mainstream dietary supplement

A Harvard Medical School study performed by Pieter A. Cohen of the Cambridge Health Alliance revieled the presence of N-alpha-methylphenethylamine in 3 different samples of the pre workout Driven Sports Craze. Each sample had different lot numbers.

  • Sample 1 was purchased at The Natural Health Shoppe, an online supplement store. There were strong signs of the presence of N-alpha-methylphenethylamine.
  • Sample 2 was purchased at GNC in the US and contained 4 mg/g or 21 mg per severing of N-alpha-methylphenethylamine.
  • Sample 3 was purchased at a European based online store BodyStore.nl. This sample contained 6 mg/g or 35 mg per severing of N-alpha-methylphenethylamine.

The U.S. Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) included Craze under it’s  “USADA Dietary Supplement High Risk List“. They also include Gaspari Nutrition Detonate that shares similar ingredients with Craze (Dendrobium extract and B-Phenethylamine).

  • Lot 1202487 Contains amphetamine;  N-methylphenethylamine,   beta-methylphenethylamine,  ethylamphetamine

Craze servings were estimated to provide 21 to 35 mg of N-alpha-methylphenethylamine. N-alpha-methylphenethylamine has not been tested on humans and may have adverse unknown side-effects.

The Sweden Drug Analysis Unit at SKL found that phenethylamine has a chemically similar structure to amphetamines. On Craze’s supplement facts they list  N,N-diethyl-phenylethylamine but do not mention any trace of N-alpha-methylphenethylamine found in Pieter A. Cohen’s study.

World Anti Doping Agency (WADA) Drug Test Failure

These athletes claim they failed a drug test due to use of Driven Sports Craze. They argued that Craze mislabeled there product and failed to include this methamphadamine like chemical.

Driven Sports Defense Response

Driven Sports tested their pre workout craze in DEA registered labs located in Michigan and Sweden. Craze sales were suspended on Oct. 15th 2013 in order to investigate issues brought about by the media.

In response to those who claim methylphenethylamine isn’t a natural analog of dendrobium, Driven Sports claim that there is an “absence of a careful analysis of dendrobium”. They allude to a lack of understanding and knowledge by those who make such statements about this ingredient.

Through rigorous testing they were able to find N-beta-methylphenethylamine but no N-alpha-methylphenethylamine. Driven Sports claims that these compounds are very similar in structure and unless tested for specifically the n-beta form can be easily mistaken for the n-alpha. They propose that previous tests did not take into account for the presence of n-beta so they came up with a “mistaken conclusion that any given sample contains n-alpha”.

“Driven Sports contracted Avomeen Analytical Services an FDA-registered, DEA-licensed, cGMP-complaint independent testing laboratory that specializes in custom chemical testing and material analysis to have a certified analytical reference standard created at great expense…Driven Sports is the only party to have tested Craze against a certified analytical reference standard for the compound in question.”

Certificates of Analysis by Driven Sports

Background of the creator of Craze Matt Cahill

Matt Cahill dropped out of Nassau Community College pursuing a degree in exercise physiology. He has a history of releasing risky supplements into the market place without background knowledge in chemistry or pharmaceuticals.

Designerlabs.com: DNP Diet Pills

DNP (2,4-Dinitrophenol) gained popularity with claims of increasing metabolic rate by 50% and weight loss claims of 10-12 pounds in about a week. This chemical was proven too toxic for humans after causing numerous cases of blindness and death in diet pills. The FDA banned use of DNP for dietary consumption in 1938.

Matt Cahill partnered up with a friend to start a business selling weight loss pills online. He sold DNP diet pills,  ecstasy, and steroids. The company showed up on the radar after a vial of liquid steroids broke in the mail containing hypodermic needles.

In order to obtain the DNP Cahill masked his name and claimed he needed DNP as an insecticide for a landscaping company. He encapsulated the deadly chemical with baking soda to formulate this diet pill.

On September 2002, teenager Leta Hole took a a dozen DNP diet pills to commit suicide. She was rushed to the hospital after regretting the decision. The high concentration of DNP burned up her insides and killed her.

Cahill and his partner were not charged with Leta’s death but charged with CONSPIRACY TO COMMIT MAIL FRAUD and INTRODUCTION OF A MISBRANDED DRUG INTO INTERSTATE COMMERCE. Cahill’s diet pills did not contain any directions on use or warnings prohibiting use cases.

Designer Supplements: Superdrol

As litigation for his previous offense panned out, Cahill launched a company called Designer Supplements in 2003. In 2004, he introduced a designer steroid called Superdrol containing methasteron. Cahill found this chemical in a chemistry book listed along with other steroids. This chemical had not been tested on humans before Cahill got his hands on it. Before distribution he tested it on himself and friends.

Two batches of Superdrol were released in late 2004 and early 2005. Both times Superdrol sold out in 15 minutes. In April 2005, Cahill sold the Superdrol formula to Anabolic Resources before facing his sentence for his DNP conviction.

In March 2006, the FDA sent a warning letter to Anabolic Resources about the synthetic steroid methasteron in Superdrol. “These products claim to be anabolic and problems associated with anabolic steroids include: liver toxicity, testicular atrophy and male infertility, masculinization of women, breast enlargement in males, and short stature in children.”

The product cannot be a dietary supplement because the active ingredient used in the product, methasteron, is not a vitamin, mineral, amino acid, herb or other botanical, or dietary substance for use by man to supplement the diet by increasing the total dietary intake, nor is it a concentrate, metabolite, constituent, extract, or combination of any dietary ingredient described above. Rather, it is a synthetic steroid.

Numerous complaints of liver problems were brought about. Anabolic Resources was charged with selling unapproved drugs through Superdrol distribution. They were forced to pay fines, settlements, and discontinue any products containing  methasteron. In 2008, Cahill closed Designer Supplements and started a new company called Diven Sports. Founder Matt Cahill gave himself the title of VP of Operations as his wife was given the role of CEO.

Driven Sports Craze Timeline

  • (Nov. 2011) Driven Sports Craze entered the market
  • (July 25th 2013) Pulled From Walmart
  • (Aug. 2nd 2013) Pulled form Bodybuilding
  • (Oct. 14th 2013) Pulled from ebay: Craze prices shot up to $200+
  • (Oct. 14th 2013) Pulled form Amazon: Craze prices shot up to $200+
  • (Oct. 15th 2013) Pulled from GNC
  • (Oct. 15th 2013) Driven Sports halted production and sales

Bodybuilding named Craze its 2012 New Supplement of the Year. They have since removed it’s nominee from competition in 2013.

Caffeine

Caffeine Powder

Caffeine Supplementation

.9-4.5mg/lb…2-10mg/kg…150lb=140-680mg/day

Caffeine enhances nervous system activity providing mental and physical improvements. This stimulant could be found in coffee, soft drinks, tea, and chocolate. It has the ability to reduce fatigue, increase alertness, and causes a feeling of euphoria. It is often seen as the most effective ingredient to promote stimulation in a pre workout. This stems from the ability to increase adrenaline production.

This drug has been used by athletes throughout history as a performance enhancer. It is so potent that in large doses (about 500mg) it would cause an athlete to fail a drug test. The stimulant benefits both aerobic and anaerobic activities.

Reduce Adenosine Receptor Properties

Adenosine receptors are responsible for neurotranmission, arousal, and pain perception. Caffeine works against the the adenosine receptors by decreasing pain perception and lowering perceived exertion during exercise. These effect result in a decreased firing rate of the motor units allowing for more sustainable and forceful muscle contractions.

Increased Muscle Calcium Ion (Ca2+) Concentration

Caffeine consumption induces and enhances production of calcium ions (Ca2+) in muscle fibers. Calcium ions are used by all muscle fibers as there primary signaling and regulatory molecule. This allows for an increased ability to turn electrical stimulus into a mechanical response. Without calcium ions the nerves and muscle fibers would not be executable.

Aerobic Endurance Increased

2008  Caffeine improves physical and cognitive performance during exhaustive exercise.
Dosage: Caffeine 100mg + 45g Carbs vs Performance bar vs and Placebo
Method: Twenty-four well-trained cyclists performed a 2.5-h exercise followed by a time to exhaustion trial.
Results: Those who took caffeine had significantly better results in the computerized complex information processing tests and time to exhaustion test.

Caffeine allows the user to perform at a higher power output for a longer amount of time. Noticeable enhancements are seen in speed, resistance to fatigue, and complex cognitive abilities. This is ideal for prolonged aerobic situations.

More fat is used as an energy source which slows down the use of glycogen and delays fatigue. This improves time to exhaustion by 22%.

Caffeine helps increase blood lactate levels. As you reach closer to your lactate threshold your muscles fatigue and exercise becomes difficult to maintain. Caffeine helps you perform at a higher level without reaching your lactic threshold. This helps maintain aerobic metabolism before tapping into the more limited anaerobic energy production process.

Anaerobic Power Production Enhanced

2008 Caffeine supplementation and multiple sprint running performance.
Dosage:  Caffeine 5mg/kg vs Placebo Maltodextrin
Method:  21 physically active men participated in multiple sprint intervals (12 x 30 m; repeated at 35-s intervals)
Results:  Caffeine ingestion resulted in a 1.4% faster sprint time and an increase in average heart rate of 3.4 beats per minute.
2008 The effect of caffeine as an ergogenic aid in anaerobic exercise.
Dosage: Caffeine 5mg/kg vs Placebo
Method: Eighteen male athletes competed in leg press, chest press, and Wingate test
Results: Caffeine increases the amount of weight pushed during chest press and peak power during the Wingate test. There was no significant difference in the leg press test.

Caffeine positively effects performance during high-intensity intermittent exercise. Anaerobic metabolism is aided by the increase of adrenaline production and release of calcium ions. Greater energy, concentration, and response time helps improve short-term exercise that lasts about 5 minutes. There are mixed studies on proving whether caffeine can benefit anaerobic activities lasting 90 seconds and less.

Pre Workouts Caffeine (1 Serving)
Assault 150 mg
C4 Extreme 135 mg
Jack3d micro 125 mg

Caffeine vs Coffee

1998 Metabolic and exercise endurance effects of coffee and caffeine ingestion.
 Dosage:
  • Caffeine 4.45mg/kg in Water 7.15 ml/kg
  • Caffeine 4.45mg/kg in Coffee 7.15 ml/kg
  • Caffeine 4.45mg/kg in Decaf Coffee 7.15 ml/kg
  • Decaf Coffee 7.15 ml/kg
  • Placebo
 Method:  Nine healthy, fit, young adults ran at 85% of maximal O2 consumption until voluntary exhaustion.
 Results:
  • Plasma epinephrine (adrenaline) levels were increased the greatest by caffeine in water than in coffee.
  • Endurance was only increased with caffeine in water and not in coffee.

Greater performance benefits from caffeine are seen through pure supplementation rather than through a food source like coffee or soft drink.  Improvements in aerobic endurance may not be seen at all and if so very little when ingested through a source like coffee. Coffee contains hundreds of biologically active compounds including caffeine and there seems to be some that counteract the performance enhancing benefits in caffeine.

In the study by Graham TE direct Caffeine supplementation was proven to increase performance over caffeine intake through coffee. His study compared the same amount of caffeine ingested  in a water solution with a coffee solution.

Caffeine appeared to be absorbed equally from the different sources, but only when it was consumed independent of coffee was there an enhancement of endurance. In addition, in this trial the initial impact on circulating epinephrine [adrenaline] concentration was greatest. Thus it appears that some component(s) in coffee interferes with the normal ergogenic response of caffeine.

Product Servings Caffeine
Coffee 1 Cup (8 fl. oz.) 95 mg
Coca-Cola 1 Can (12 fl. oz.) 34 mg
Green Tea 1 Cup (8 fl. oz.) 25 mg
Dark Chocolate 1 Bar (162 g) 70 mg
Monster 1 Can (16 fl. oz.) 160 mg
Red Bull 1 Can (8.46 fl. oz.) 80 mg

Caffeine In Coffee

Side Effects

Caffeine use can result in restlessness, insomnia, headaches, and irritability. While caffeine use becomes more frequent, tolerance builds up and a higher dosage is needed.  This drug is addictive and after long term use can cause signs of withdrawal.  Caffeine is also a diuretic causing loss of fluids needed during exercise. This adds to the already increased water intake needed during exercise.

Creatine

Creatine

Creatine

Is it safe?

Yes, Creatine is naturally produced in the liver but it is also created in the kidney and pancreas.  It travels from these areas to the muscles via blood circulation. Generally high protein foods like red meats, fish, and poultry contain creatine. Prime sources of creatine can be obtained through consumption of beef, steak, pork, tuna , salmon, and herring. Meat contains about 2 grams of creatine per pound. Most fish contain over 2 grams per pound and Herring contains about 4.5 grams of creatine per pound.

Bad for your Liver?


2008 Creatine supplementation does not affect clinical health markers in football players.
Dosage: Creatine Monohydrate 15 g/day for 7 days and 3 g/day for 49 days.
Method:  14 Football players performed football specific training for 8 weeks.
Results:  Blood and urine tests showed no negative health effects.
2003 Long-term creatine supplementation does not significantly affect clinical markers of health in athletes.
Dosage: Creatine Monohydrate 15.75 g/day for 5 days and an average of 5 g/day over 21-months in 5-10 g/day doses
Method:  98 Division IA college football players were given creatine after training sessions for 21 months.
Results:  Blood and urine markers showed that health status was not negatively affected by long-term creatine use.

Benefits

Creatine is essential for providing energy during short-duration of highly demanding exercises in the form of Creatine Phosphate. Creatine Phosphate levels decline during strenuous training.  As these levels decline so does the ability to meet maximal performance. Glucose and fats are used for energy consumption during less intense conditioning.

High Intensity Training Creatine Phosphate Levels
6 seconds -35% to -57%
10 seconds -64% to -80%
16 seconds -88% to -100%
3-4 minutes of rest +80% to +95%

Overall performance is heightened when creatine concentrations are maximized. Significant improvements are present in strength, recovery time, and fatigue resistance. In general creatine increases the overall quality of each workout session.

Increased weight is often noticed from creatine use. Body weight increase of 2-4 pounds can occur at first from an increase in lean muscle and water absorption. Muscle gains result in an increase in lean muscle weight. Long term use of creatine increases the water absorption levels of your cells thus adding to your body water weight. Since the cells are absorbing more water staying hydrated is very important.

2007 Reliability and detecting change following short-term creatine supplementation: comparison of two-component body composition methods.
Dosage: Creatine 20 g/day and Dextrose 140 g/day.
Method: 55 Healthy male athletes were tested, 30 of which were given creatine for 7 days.
Results: Creatine significantly increased body mass by 4lb and fat-free mass increased by 2lb.

Supplementation: Loading and Maintenance

Supplementation allows for creatine concentrations to remain high, resulting in longer duration of strenuous conditioning. Supplementation can increase creatine concentrations in the muscles by 20%. Once we reach this level of concentration our muscles are considered saturated with creatine. When the muscles are saturated creatine concentration is maxed out and will not increase anymore. After stopping creatine supplementation it takes about 4 weeks for creatine levels to return back to base level.

Loading Phase

The loading phase occurs during the first 5 days of supplementation. About .135 g/lb or 20-25 grams of creatine should be consumed during this time.  I recommend splitting up the dosage throughout the day in increments of 5g at a time to minimize nausea. The goal here is to saturate the muscles in order to see quicker elevations in creatine concentration. Loading is not necessary but by doing so creatine levels will reach saturation within 5 days as opposed to a month of just maintenance.

Maintenance Phase

After the initial loading phase only 2-4 grams or .0135 g/lb of creatine a day is needed to keep up muscle saturation. Maintenance can be done without loading but it can take 25 days longer to maximize creatine concentrations.

Creatinine

Creatinine is the by-product of creatine degradation. Creatine is degenerated in the gastrointestinal intestinal tract at a rate of 0.1 g of a 5 g dose per hour. The skeletal muscle is the main source of creatinine production. As muscle saturation of creatine increase, creatinine levels increase due to reduction in the skeletal muscle uptake.

Creatinine, urea and urate levels increase as the kidney’s ability to filter fluid in the body weakens. High creatine intake also increases creatinine levels. High levels of Creatinine are often used by doctors as a indicator for kidney failure. This leads to the misconception that creatine is harmful to your kidneys.

Types of Creatine

Creatine Monohydrate

27mg/lb…60mg/kg…150lb= 4.05g/day

This is the most common and basic form of creatine. Other forms of creatine were created to improve this original formula. Most people still use Creatine Monohydrate and it is often considered the best form of creatine because it’s benifits are backed by the most studies.

  • 40% Muscle Cell Absorption Rate: resulting in a need for high dosages
  • Bloating
  • Loss of Definition: due to water retention
  • Not Very Soluble in Water
  • Upset Stomach
  • 5g of monohydrate = 4.40g of creatine
  • Loading Dosage: 20g
  • Maintenance Dosage: 5g

Creatine Ethyl Ester (CEE)

  • Loading Dosage: 10g
  • Maintenance Dosage: 5g

This form of creatine was engineered to absorb into the muscles quicker by combining ethyl alcohol found in beer with creatine monohydrate. It was also thought to decrease bloating by having less creatine sitting outside of the muscles, lower dosage, and avoid nausea.

”…creatine ethyl ester is very unstable in the bloodstream. Within a few minutes the ester completely breaks down into creatine and ethanol. The decomposition is most likely much faster than absorption into the muscle cells. As a result, taking creatine ethyl ester is no different from taking creatine.” Analysis of Creatine Ethyl Ester from Tulsa University

So before creatine ethyl ester even reaches your muscles the ethanol (that was suppose to help absorption) is already decomposed. This makes creatine ethyl ester no better than taking creatine monohydrate. Creatine ethyl ester contains 17.4 g of creatine for a 20 g dose and 4.37 g for a 5 g dosage. Don’t waste your money on Creatine Ethyl Ester.

2009 The effects of creatine ethyl ester supplementation combined with heavy resistance training on body composition, muscle performance, and serum and muscle creatine levels
Dosage: Creatine Ethyl Ester 20g/day for 5 days and 5g/day for 42 days. Creatine Monohydrate 20g/day for 5 days and 5g/day for 42 days.
Method: 30 Recreationally active healthy males participated in leg press and bench press maximal strength tests. Along with a  resistance-training program 4 days a week. They were tested on days 0, 6, 27, and 48
Results:
  1. Total Muscle Creatine Content

    • Creatine Ethyl Ester: Increase muscle creatine content in 27 days.
    • Creatine Monohydrate: Increased in 6 and 27 days.
  2. Serum Creatine Concentrations
    • Creatine Ethyl Ester: Did not have any significant increase.
    • Creatine Monohydrate: Increased in 6, 27, 48 days.
  3. Serum Creatinine Concentrations
    1. Creatine Ethyl Ester: Increased in 6, 27, and 48 days.
    2. Creatine Monohydrate: Did not have any significant increase.

Micronized Creatine

Micronized Ceatine

The process of micronization refines monohydrate molecules at a particle size of 200-300 mesh. Micronized Creatine reduces the powder’s molecule diameter from 300-500 microns to 45-75 microns.

The smaller molecule size benefit water solubility and decreases bloating. More creatine is absorbed quicker minimizing nausea by decreasing the amount that sits in your stomach. Micronized Creatine is more effective than Creatine Monohydrate that is not micronized.

When buying Micronized Creatine it is important to look for one that is milled with a mesh of at least 200 with a molecule size of at most 75 microns. Some companies use a mesh as small as 80, with a diameter of 180 microns and still market it as micronized.

Creatine Malate

Creatine Malate is Creatine Monohydrate bonded with Malic Acid. This acid bonds with water very quickly helping to increase the rate of creatine transfer into the muscles. L-malate by it self has been proven to help improve stamina and muscle damage during exercise.

The problem is the bond created between Malic Acid and water is so strong that it has a hard time releasing.  This causes some Creatine Malate to be flushed through the body without ever reaching the muscles.

Creatine Nitrate

APS Creatine Ntirate

In 100mg of Creatine Nitrate there are 77mg of creatine and 23mg of nitrate. As a salt once it interacts with a solution it disassociates itself.  Meaning it no longer maintains its bond and separates in creatine and nitrate.

Nitrate offers effects of nitric oxide such as increased hyperemia and vascularity. The same effects of creatine nitrate can be obtained through separate monohydrate and arginine supplementation.

Creatine Kre-Alkalyn

1.5g/day

Kre-Alkalyn consists of Creatine Monohydrate and alkali-buffering salt. This combination was thought to increase the pH level protecting the creatine from the digestive tract saving it from being broken down into creatinine before it reaches the muscle. This buffer is suppose to eliminate the need for a loading phase.

Tallon and child found that, “Kre-alkalyn supplementation has no beneficial effect on creatine-to-creatinine conversion rates”. They set up an environment with 1 pH solution and compared the breakdown rate of both Kre-Alkalyn and Monohydrate. Contrary to what was expected the Kre-ALkalyn actually broke down 35% more. This study was done to emulate the low pH environment of the stomach.

Class Action Lawsuit: Dino Bruce v. Ultimate Nutrition, Inc.

Ultimate Nutrition is facing a class action lawsuit for false marketing claims. Dino Bruce argues that the product Ultimate Nutrition Kre-Alkalyn is being falsely advertised as better than creatine monohydrate.

  • “Kre-Alkalyn is creatine which is 100% stable and will not break down into creatinine. This stability allows the creatine to be absorbed more efficiently into the bloodstream”
  • “Kre-Alkalyn allows athletes to use smaller serving sizes while experiencing even more explosive results.”
  • “Kre-Alkalyn has been referred to as a new form of creatine; however, it is actually the best form of creatine (creatine monohydrate) that has been fully stabilized.”
2012 A buffered form of creatine does not promote greater changes in muscle creatine content, body composition, or training adaptations than creatine monohydrate
Dosage:
  • Creatine Monohydrate 20g/day for 7 days and 5g/day for 21 days
  • Creatine Kre-Alkalyn 20g/day for 7 days and Creatine Monohydrate 5g/day for 21 days
  • Creatine Kre-Alkalyn 1.5g/day for 28 days (manufacturer’s recommended dose)
Method: 36 resistance-trained participants performed Wingate Anaerobic Capacity (WAC) tests at 0, 7, and 28-days and 1RM strength tests at 0 and 28-days.
Results:  No significant difference in muscle creatine content, body composition, strength, anaerobic capacity or side effects.

Creatine Hydrochloride(HCl)

7.5mg/lb…16.5mg/kg…150lb=1.125g/day

Con-Cret

Creatine HCl has a pH of 2 protecting it from being converted into creatinine since the stomach is a similar pH. It is water soluble which helps it absorb quickly and avoid bloating. Increased absorption requires only .75g/100lb and does not require a loading phase vs monohydrate’s 3g/100lb.

Creatine HCl is about 50% more bioavalable than creatine monohydrate. Bioavailability refers to the rate and amount of a supplement that reaches the systemic circulation of a patient following administration of the supplement. A study in a patent administered 5g of both creatine monohydrate and creatine HCl a week apart. Peak creatine plasma concentrations were significantly greater with creatine HCl. This bioavailability stems from it’s enhanced solubility.

According to the same patent, Creatine HCl has a solubility ranging from 250 mg/ml to about 1000 mg/ml. Other creatines like creatine monohydrate and creatine citrate have a solubility ranging of 10 mg/ml to about 16 mg/mL.

“The aqueous solubility of the creatine HCl is preferably 42 times greater than that of creatine monohydrate when tested at room temperature (25° C.) after a time period of about 1.5 hours.”
2009 Effects of BIOCREAT supplementation on strength and body composition during an 8-week resistance training program
Dosage: Dextrose 75g (Placebo), Creatine Monohydrate 5g + Dextrose 75g, Creatine HCL 900mg + Creatine Monohydrate 3.5g
Method: 47 Resistance trained men trained for 8 weeks, 4-day per week. At 0, 4, and 8-weeks they were tested on body composition, 1 RM strength, muscular endurance, and anaerobic capacity.
Results: Those who took Creatine HCl + Creatine Monohydrate had a significantly greater Wingate peak power performance. Overall there was no significant difference between the creatine groups in upper body strength and body composition.

Creatine Citrate

As a salt creatine citrate disassociates into citric acid and creatine monohydrate. Since creatine has a slower solubility than citric acid this leaves creatine monohydrate behind to absorb in the muscle or degradate into creatinine. The amount of time it take to reach peak concentration of creatine citrate is identical to creatine monohydrate.

This form of creatine has a very low creatine per gram rate. For every 5 grams of Creatine Citrate there are 2 grams of actual creatine. This requires double of the recommended dosage to be as effective as monohydrate.

2007 Comparison of new forms of creatine in raising plasma creatine levels
Dosage: Creatine Monohydrate 4.4g, Creatine Citrate 4.4g, Creatine Pyruvate 4.4g
Method: Six healthy subjects consumed 1 dose of creatine and plasma concentrations were tested within 8 hours.
Results: There was no significant difference between creatine monohydrate and creatine citrate.

Creatine Phosphate

When creatine enters the body it must bond with a phosphate group to be effective in producing ATPs. By combining the two before consumption it is thought that it would be better than taking monohydrate but there are no significant improvements.

At a composition of 63% creatine and 38% phosphate, 5 grams of Creatine Phosphate contains 3.12 grams of creatine.

2005 Effect of creatine phosphate supplementation on anaerobic working capacity and body weight after two and six days of loading in men and women.
Dosage:
  • Dextrose 18 g as placebo
  • Creatine Monohydrate 5.0 g + Dextrose 20 g
  • Creatine Monohydrate 5.0 g + Sodium and Potassium Phosphates 4 g + Dextrose 18 g
Method:  Sixty-one men and women were tested on anaerobic working capacity and body weight.
Results: There is no statistical significant increase in anaerobic working capacity between creatine monohydrate and creatine phosphate.


Summary

Creatine Monohydrate

  • 40% Muscle Cell Absorption Rate: resulting in a need for high dosages

  • Dosage 3g/100lb

  • Bloating

  • Loss of Definition: due to water retention

  • Not Very Soluble

  • Upset Stomach

  • 5g Monohydrate = 4.40g Creatine

#1 Creatine Hydrochloride(HCl)

Con-Cret Creatine

  • Increased Absorption Rate: +50% Bioavailability 

  • Dosage .75g/100lb

  • No Bloating

  • No Water Retention

  • +42% Soluble

  • No Nausea

#2 Micronized Creatine

Miconized Creatine

  • Increased Absorption Rate

  • Decreased Bloating

  • Very Soluble

  • Decreased Nausea

#3 Creatine Nitrate

Creatine Nitrate

  • Same as Monohydrate

  • Nitric Oxide Production

 #4 Creatine Citrate
  • Goal: Increasing solubility
  • Result: Citric acid and Creatine disassociate before reaching the muscle
  • Same as Monohydrate
  • Con: 5g Creatine Citrate = 2g Creatine

#5 Creatine Phosphate

  • Containes 63% creatine vs the 88% in monohydrate
  • Same effects as Monohydrate

 #6 Creatine Ethyl Ester (CEE)
  • Goal: Greater absorption rate
  • Result: Ethanol and Creatine decompose before reaching the muscle
  • Same effects as Monohydrate

 

#7 Creatine Kre-Alkalyn

  • Goal: Protect Creatine from breaking down in the stomach
  • Result: Creatine wound up breaking down 35% more
  • Same effects as Monohydrate

#8 Creatine Malate

  • Not guaranteed to reach the muscles before leaving the body.

Sodium Bicarbonate

Sodium Bicarbonate


136mg/lb…300mg/kg…150lb=20,400mg/day

Food Source: Baking Soda

Sodium Bicarbonate

This antacid is used as baking soda and is naturally created in the body. The pancreas produces sodium bicarbonate into the small intestine as food digests and the stomach empties. This decreases the acidity of food as it enters the intestines and protects against acidic gastric digestive fluids.

As a base Sodium Bicarbonate acts as an antacid by increasing the pH level of blood and decreasing hydrogen ions. Hydrogen ions move out of the muscle cells due to the differential of low pH caused by contraction and high pH through blood saturation of Sodium Bicarbonate.  Through pH regulation Sodium Bicarbonate has the potential to increases peak power, strength, fatigue resistance, and work capacity. Studies have shown mixed results on whether sodium bicarbonate supplementation is actually beneficial.

Supplementation should be broken up through out the day because high doses at one time often causes gastric problems.

PH Stabilizing

During intense activity carbon dioxide and lactic acid build up, causing the body’s pH level to decline (becoming more acidic).  A decrease in pH level hinders performance through muscle fatigue and is correlated with an increase in hydrogen ions. Hydrogen ion build-up cause an atrophy in  peak power, overall strength, endurance, training capacity, and anaerobic threshold.

Sodium Citrate

Food SourceFruits, Berries, Citrus, Soft Drinks, and Ice Cream (as a flavoring agent or a preservative)

Blood interaction causes Sodium Citrate to break down into Sodium Bicarbonate. This provides us with the benefits Sodium Bicarbonate has to offer against muscle fatigue through decreasing pH levels.

Where Sodium Bicarbonate seems to benefit short bursts of highly intense activity, Sodium Citrate seems to benefit high intense endurance based exercises that last anywhere from 2-15 minutes.

Studies Proving Significant

2013 Additive effects of beta-alanine and sodium bicarbonate on upper-body intermittent performance.
Dosage: Sodium Bicarbonate 500 mg/kg and Beta-Alanine 6.4g
Method: 37  Judo and Jujutsu competitors completed four 30 second high-intensity intermittent upper-body Wingate tests, separated by 3 min.
Results: Total Work Done

  • Placebo + Placebo =0%
  • Beta-Alanine + Placebo = +7%
  • Sodium Bicarbonate + Placebo = +8%
  • Sodium Bicarbonate + Beta-Alanine = +14%

Combining the buffering abilities of both sodium bicarbonate and beta-alanine significantly enhanced high-intensity intermittent upper-body performance in athletes by 14%.

2012 The effects of serial and acute NaHCO3 loading in well-trained cyclists.
Dosage: Serial loading (split doses over 3 days) vs acute loading (all on one day).
Method: 8 male cyclists completed a 4-minute performance test on a cycling ergometer.
Results: Both loading methods of sodium bicarbonate produced a significantly higher average power output than the placebo.
2008 Sodium bicarbonate improves swimming performance.
Dosage: Sodium Bicarbinate 300 mg/kg
Method: 9 elite male swimmers completed 3 200m freestyle swims testing maximal effort swimming performance.
Results: 200m Swim times were significantly faster with sodium bicarbonate supplementation.

Studies Proving Non-Significant

2013 Effect of lactate supplementation and sodium bicarbonate on 40 km cycling time trial performance.
Dosage: Sodium Bicarbonate 21.5 mg/kg – 300mg/kg
Method: 7 recreationally active males completed 5 40 km cycling time trials.
Results: There was no significant difference between the various doses of sodium bicarbonate and the placebo.
2010 Increased blood pH but not performance with sodium bicarbonate supplementation in elite rugby union players.
Dosage: Sodium Bicarbinate 300 mg/kg
Method: 25 male rugby players participated in a 25 minute warm-up, followed by 9 minutes of high-intensity rugby-specific training, followed by a rugby-specific repeated-sprint test.
Results: There was no increase in exercise performance. A greater sense of stomach cramps, belching, stomachache, bowel urgency, diarrhea, vomiting, stomach bloating, and flatulence was reported.