Science (and paradox) Behind Bang Energy – Quick Review

*If you’re looking for information on the Monster vs VPX Bang Lawsuit – see below. Since this trial is ongoing, I’ve left out any accusations regarding Bang’s ingredients in the review below.

The world of energy drinks is vast, and there isn’t enough time to give every drink the full “Energy Drink of the Month” deep dive review. In my attempt to guide my fans through this world of energy drinks, I like to share the science behind the various caffeinated beverages I come across in my travels.

The Science Behind Bang Energy

THIS DRINK IS A PARADOX!!! The caffeine content means you should not have this every day, but the ingredients suggest this drink is trying to be an everyday workout supplement. Even the purposes of the ingredients create a paradox.

Look at the four Key Ingredients:

⚡(1) Caffeine content is 300mg per can – you can only have 400mg caffeine per day if you’re a healthy adult, and you’re only supposed to have 200mg caffeine at one time according to several scientific and regulatory bodies like the EFSA. This is Fatigue Level 4 (of 5!). Bang Energy is powerful stuff! This is not for everyday use: save the big guns for when you ABSOLUTELY need it.

⚡(2) “SUPER Creatine”, because when you PATENT an ingredient, you get to NAME it! If Super Creatine has the same benefits as regular creatine that means it will help with muscle gainz! Creatine is used during the first seconds of exercise, before anaerobic metabolism (that’s glycolysis for you biochem nerdsor aerobic metabolism (meaning the Krebs cycle and electron transport chain).

what-is-creatine-phospate

The biggest problem with regular creatine (or creatine monohydrate, as it’s usually sold) is that it’s not that great at staying soluble in water. SUPER Creatine is chemically structured (via amide bond protection) to be more soluble in liquids than regular creatine. Super! Here’s a preview of the patent:

“The subject invention provides stable aqueous compositions of at least one amide-protected, biologically-active form of creatine (creatyl-amide) molecule, wherein the carboxylic acid group of creatine is linked to, for example, an amino group of an amine, an amino acid or a peptide, thereby forming an amide bond.”

-Patent – Stable aqueous compositions comprising amide-protected bioactive creatine species and uses thereof  [US 8445466 B2]

The Caffeine – Creatine Paradox:

Caffeine is better for endurance events than power/strength exercises. For creatine, the opposite is true. Creatine is better for short duration exercises because creatine becomes phosphocreatine aka creatine phosphate, which releases energy to the cells during stress. [SEE IMAGE ABOVE] Creatine and caffeine serve opposite purposes, meaning it makes little sense to take them both.

The disparity in how they work suggests caffeine and creatine don’t have any synergistic effect. It’s highly unlikely the two interact, pharmacokinetically, but a few studies suggest caffeine and creatine have opposing effects on muscle relaxation time: caffeine prolongs muscle relaxation time because it is a vasodilator; creatine shortens muscle relaxation time. Consuming both caffeine and creatine may decrease the effectiveness of creatine, but this evidence is very limited. Think about it: you’d want to test one-rep-max in a clinical trial with creatine supplements but you’d want to test endurance in clinical trials with caffeine.

⚡(3) “Ultra CoQ10” – This one also has an extreme sporty sounding name because, like “Super Creatine”, “Ultra CoQ10” is patented to be more soluble, according to this article by New Hope Network. But what does it do?

CoQ10 helps the production of ATP, the chemical form of energy. CoQ10 acts as an antioxidant by reduce plaque buildup in the arteries and reducing the damage LDL does to blood vessels.

CoQ10, aka coenzyme Q10, supplementation longer than 4 weeks has been reported to provide benefits for the long-term endurance athlete, however, this benefit has not been proven conclusively. There’s much more evidence around caffeine and endurance, so it’s difficult to justify using CoQ10 since it doesn’t seem to do anything at doses under 90 mg.

⚡(4) “BCAA Aminos” (Yes, this is redundant – “Branched Chain AMINO Acid Aminos”!) –   BCAAs prevent fatigue during exercise because they limit the amount of muscle broken down during exercise. Like caffeine and CoQ10, BCAAs are better for endurance events than for power/strength events (which makes creatine the odd duck in this energy drink).

BCAAs are proven to help with muscle fatigue since the muscle uses these types of amino acids as fuel during long-term endurance events.  In long-term endurance events, your body starts using amino acids after it’s used up the available carbohydrates as fuel.

UPDATE MAY 2019: Monster has levied some serious accusations against Bang regarding their formula. A judge has YET to weigh in, and the trial is scheduled for June 2020! As such, I present this info only as a recap of the lawsuit and not as proven fact.

🤓❤️🏋️‍♀️☕🔬

Thank you for reading/liking/sharing! ~GreenEyedGuide.com

 

5 thoughts on “Science (and paradox) Behind Bang Energy – Quick Review

  • Quick question: do you know the amounts of creatine in this product? I have a feeling its ridiculously low based on its placement in the ingredient statement. I’m supplementing creatine monohydrate at around 7g per day. Also have you heard of any other drinkable creatine products?

    • I suspect the creatine content is very low – look at how much Vitamin C is in this product, 50% DV = 45 mg. So Creatine content is less than that! The Effective Dose of creatine is 2.5 grams (or 55.5x the 45mg dose probably in this can).
      Creatine is not very good at staying in solution – creatine becomes creatine monohydrate in water, and creatine monohydrate is soluble at only ~1 gram per 75 mL water.
      There aren’t many drinkable creatine products with doses large enough to be effective, but that’s fine – why does creatine have to be drinkable anyway? In scientific studies, the gold standard of nutrient delivery is in pill form. Pills and capsules are the best way to ensure the full dose is getting into your body as opposed to getting stuck on the walls of your shaker cup.
      Thanks for reading GreenEyedGuide!

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