myedge is your edge

News Written by Richard Harris

Our ethos at My Pinnacle Nutrition is to improve your performance, naturally, without sacrificing your health. We aim to provide you with sports nutrition supplements that give you everything you need, and nothing that you don't.

As a company that thrives on the latest scientific evidence known to benefit sporting performance, we have thoroughly researched which ingredients should be included in all of our products, including myedge.

myedge is your edge

myedge has been uniquely formulated to be taken before your endurance sport or event. myedge has genuinely been transforming our customers sporting performances. Don't take our word for it; please see what our customers think here.

Below is a short insight into the ingredients included within myedge, explaining what, why and how they combine to improve your endurance performance.

Karbo-Lyn™

What?

Unlike other simple carbohydrates, Karbo-Lyn™ is a complex (starch) carbohydrate (CHO) that is absorbed very quickly without any side effects, stomach bloating or discomfort. Karbo-Lyn™ is sourced from rice, potato and corn. It is the only CHO source we use in our products here at MPN.

Research behind Karbo-Lyn™:

Karbo-Lyn™ is a homopolysaccharide, made up of many monosaccharides joined together by glycosidic bonds. These are very large bonds that are branched macromolecules. The 'molecular mass' has been precisely manipulated to create absorption through the stomach at a rate much greater than maltodextrin, dextrose, breads, pasta, or any other carbohydrate product on the market. In fact, Karbo-Lyn™ has been shown to move through the stomach 18.21% faster than dextrose or sugar. This is due to a higher solution osmolarity of Karbo-Lyn™ when compared with dextrose, sucrose or other carbohydrate powder mixes on the market.

Why?

Research suggests that one of, if not the biggest factor in athletes ‘hitting the wall’ during endurance sport is the depletion of stored glycogen stores within the muscles and liver. Once they’re empty, they’re empty!

Evidence also highlights an increased uptake of creatine phosphate into our cells when ingested alongside a fast acting CHO. Please read the ‘Creatine’ section to understand why this phenomenon is important in endurance performance.

How?

‘Pre – loading’ the body by ingesting a fast acting CHO such as Karbo-Lyn™ can help reduce the risk of fatigue during the latter stages of your endurance event. By increasing blood glucose levels through the ingestion of Karbo-Lyn™, we can help preserve and maintain our muscle and liver stores of glycogen, therefore minimizing the risk of ‘hitting the wall’. Evidence highlights we can digest roughly 1 gram of CHO per minute. Therefore, we have included 60 grams of Karbo-Lyn™ in myedge, effectively sparing your body of utilising 60 grams of stored glycogen.

Amount in myedge (90 g serving): 60 g

To obtain 60 g of carbohydrates from rice/potato, you would need to eat roughly 240 g of cooked rice and 3 – 400 g of potato depending on type.

Branched Chain Amino Acids (BCAA’s)

What?

BCAA’s refer to just three key essential amino acids*: Leucine, Isoleucine, and Valine.

Why?

BCAA’s play a vital role in the reduction of both physical and cognitive fatigue during and after exercise; something that is vital to manage for effective performance in prolonged endurance activity. In fact, the ingestion of BCAA’s (90mg per kg bodyweight) prior to activity in trained cyclists highlighted a reduced rating of perceived exertion and cognitive fatigue by 7% and 15% respectively.

Due to their role in muscle protein synthesis (repair and growth), BCAA’s, particularly Leucine, are suggested to reduce the effects of delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMs) post exercise. Interestingly, BCAA’s may also indirectly help spare stored glycogen levels, the importance of which has been discussed previously.

How?

During exercise, BCAA levels are reduced within the blood stream and levels of the amino acid Tryptophan increase. This phenomenon would normally cause an influx of Tryptophan into the brain, causing an increase in serotonin production, promoting both physical and cognitive fatigue. Research suggests that supplementing with up to 20 grams of BCAA’s prior to physical exercise is therefore vital to prevent the decline of BCAA levels, thus reducing the effects of fatigue during endurance activity. This will also assist in maintaining one’s ability to make accurate decisions during the latter stages of endurance exercise.

Amount in myedge (90 g serving): 10 g

Natural sources to obtain 10 g of BCAA’s:

You would need to consume around 60 g of protein, which equates to a 9 oz beef fillet steak, or 8 large eggs.

 

L – Citrulline

What?

L – Citrulline is one of three amino acids present in the urea cycle**. The other two amino acids within the urea cycle are L – Arginine and L – Ornithine.

Why?

Studies have associated doses of 6 to 8 grams of L – Citrulline as Malate (the ingredient in myedge) with increased efficiency of ATP production within our cell powerhouses; the mitochondria. This result noted a reduced relative intensity for the same given workload; the same speed/distance, without working as hard (something we'd all love)!. It is thought the increased contribution of the aerobic energy system promotes this effect.

Research has also shown L – Citrulline can itself assist in the buffering of increased acidity and ammonia concentrations, both signs of increased exercise intensity and thus fatigue. Increased levels of L – Ornithine from L – Citrulline ingestion is a vital part of assisting in the reduction of ammonia accumulation, aiding in the maintenance of muscular contraction, and therefore exercise performance.

How?

Ingestion of L – Citrulline has been shown to simultaneously increase blood plasma levels of L – Arginine and L – Ornithine, as well as itself. The importance of this is twofold. L – Arginine is a vital amino acid to help synthesize the nitric oxide metabolism, a vital system to help maintain good blood flow and vascularity of blood vessels. L – Ornithine on the other hand helps reduce the increase in ammonia that arises from increased exercise intensity.

Why not just take L – Arginine and L – Ornithine? The ingestion of L – Arginine itself has not shown increases in blood plasma levels as effectively as through supplementing L – Citrulline. Furthermore, supplementing L – Arginine and L – Ornithine has been implicated in causing severe digestive problems, something L – Citrulline hasn't been linked too.

The mechanism behind the increased efficiency of muscular energy production can be summarised by the increased circulating levels of L – Arginine, thus increasing nitric oxide metabolism, through L – Citrulline supplementation.

Amount in myedge (90 g serving): 6 g

Natural source to obtain 6 g of L - Citrulline:

You would need to consume a watermelon weighing approximately 2.85 kg. 

Creatine Monohydrate

What? 

Creatine Monohydrate is the active ingredient within myedge, and is a molecule that exists within the body as Creatine Phosphate. Creatine Phosphate is a source of adenosine triphosphate (ATP: the fuel currency for our cells) where energy demand is high and in need of being resynthesized rapidly; the phosphocreatine energy system.

Creatine is the world’s most researched supplement. In fact, Creatine is one of only very few ingredients labelled by the European Commission of Permitted Health Claims (ECPHC) where claims of its benefit as a nutritional supplemental can be made. According to ECPHC, Creatine supplementation in doses of 3 g or more can 'cause increases in physical performance during repeated short-term, high intensity, exercise bouts'. 

Previous evidence pointed to Creatine as a supplement for bodybuilders, to increase strength and size. This theory although true, is but a small benefit of Creatine supplementation.

Why and How?

Creatine is suggested to act as an aid in carbohydrate loading. It has been shown that when cellular Creatine levels are increased, co-ingestion of a carbohydrate source is thought to have a role in improving accumulation of glycogen into the muscle.

During endurance exercise, our muscles produce high amounts of heat as a result of energy production. Creatine supplementation in doses from 5 to 20 grams daily has been shown to help improve heat tolerance, especially when exercising in warm environments. It is thought that the water retaining properties from Creatine supplementation, alongside a carbohydrate source, can help maintain blood plasma levels (blood plasma is 95% water by volume), thus preventing dehydration and allowing the sweating response to cool our bodies.

Creatine has also been proven to enhance power output, a vital element of endurance sports such as cycling. During periods of intense effort such as a sprint finish or hill climb, the majority of energy is provided by the phosphocreatine energy system.

Further evidence suggests that Creatine supplementation closer to the activity of choice; either before or after, has greater benefit of promoting Creatine storage within the muscle. It is thought that Creatine transportation is increased in response to repeated muscular contractions.

Amount in myedge (90 g serving): 5 g

Natural sources to obtain 5 g of Creatine:

You would need to eat 1.1 kg of very lean red meat, or 1.47 kg of lean chicken.

Beta – Alanine

What?

Beta – Alanine is an amino acid, that along with L – Histidine, is converted into Carnosine. Carnosine is an important molecule present mostly in skeletal muscle and the brain. Its primary role is to help with the buffering of increased cellular acidity.

Why and How?

Sports that involve intense efforts of 30 seconds or more have been shown to cause increased hydrogen ion accumulation and a gradual drop in blood pH levels. Blood lactate also begins to accumulate and gradually exercise performance will suffer as a result.

Carnosine, formed from the ingestion of doses of up to 6 grams of Beta – Alanine daily, has been associated with helping reduce the intensity of cellular acidity increases, prolonging the continuation of high intensity exercise.

Improvements of 2.85 to 10.49% in exercise time to exhaustion have been noted from Beta – Alanine ingestion prior to activity. The effectiveness of Carnosine as a buffering agent is suggested to be governed by how much Beta – Alanine is present in the cell prior to muscular contraction.

Some individuals may experience a tingling feeling from Beta – Alanine ingestion. This is called paresthesia; it is a harmless side effect.

Amount in myedge (90 g serving): 5 g

Natural sources to obtain 5 g of Beta – Alanine:

You would need to eat 2.1 kg of pork or 2.7 kg of beef.

 

Caffeine

What?

Caffeine is a compound that is extracted from coffee beans, and is also in various teas. Its primary role is to sensitize one’s nerve endings and to promote increased alertness through mental stimulation.

Why?

Caffeine ingestion prior to prolonged endurance exercise is proven to provide significant increases in performance. Doses of Caffeine ranging from 200 to nearly 500 mg have shown improvements in time to exhaustion and distance completed in cycling time trials, to name but a few benefits. However, increasing the dose to 500 mg is not proven to be of greater benefit than the smaller 200 mg dose of Caffeine.

How?

One of the mechanisms behind the above association is Caffeine’s binding to adenosine receptors in the brain. Adenosine increases the feeling of sedation when it acts upon its receptors. Thus Caffeine blocking the action of adenosine increases the feeling of alertness.

Caffeine intake has also been shown to significantly reduce the perception of pain in subjects, as well as influencing a reduced rating of perceived exertion, aiding in the continuation of high intensity exercise, improving performance.

To maximally benefit from Caffeine ingestion, one must have a reasonable sensitivity for Caffeine. For more information on this phenomenon, and Caffeine and its benefits on endurance activity, please click here.

Amount in myedge (90 g serving): 200 mg.

Natural sources to obtain 200 mg of Caffeine:

Caffeine amounts vary between sources, but Coffee contains between 50 – 200 mg per drink. Teas contain between 20 – 50 mg per drink. Raw Cocoa powder also contains caffeine, but only 0.2% by weight.

L-Theanine

What?

L – Theanine is an amino acid most commonly found in green tea.

Why and How?

L – Theanine primarily acts as a relaxing compound without promoting sedation, but rather increasing attention.

L – Theanine, taken synergistically with caffeine has been proven to help improve cognition and attention, which in terms of the benefits to endurance sport is vital, especially towards the latter stages of competition. It is suggested that the co - ingestion of L – Theanine and caffeine can preserve the benefits of caffeine discussed previously, also reducing the ‘crash’ symptoms associated with caffeine intake, especially in extreme doses.

L – Theanine has also been linked with helping enhance our nitric oxide metabolism.

Amount in myedge (90 g serving): 200 mg

Natural source to obtain 200 mg of L - Theanine:

3 – 4 cups of green tea. Green tea contains roughly 20 – 60 mg of L – Theanine per cup.

Stevia

Stevia is the only sweetener we will use in our products to help make them taste great. To find out why we only use Stevia, please see this separate article here. 

We also hope you’ve enjoyed this article. If so, please do share with your friends.

Thanks for reading! 

Team MPN

 

* an essential amino acid is one that cannot be synthesized by the human body; it must be provided exogenously (from our diets).

** the urea cycle will be discussed in a separate article.

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