I declared myself a biochemistry/chemistry major in 2003 – right at the beginning of the Energy Drink Boom. Fascinated by these drinks and all the fears surrounding their use, I’ve applied my education (and basically all my free time) toward understanding the science behind energy drinks and their ingredients. In 2003, energy drinks contained synthetic caffeine as well as caffeine extracts from guarana and yerba mate. While synthetic caffeine was often criticized for being synthetic, guarana and yerba mate were often criticized for being “dangerous stimulants”. Then along came green coffee bean extract and coffeeberry/coffee fruit. As a caffeine consumer, you may be wondering, what is it about green coffee beans and coffeeberry that make it special? I encourage you to geek out with me over these game-changing energy drink ingredients.
Start with water. Add flavor. Add vitamins. Add color. Add sweetener. At what point does “water” become something else? Consider a drink with only caffeine, water, and flavor – what do we call this? For this month’s energy drink pick, let’s discuss a beverage contrary to energy drink expectations and the science behind the green coffee beans used to fuel it. Read more
Following your passion requires vision, commitment, persistence, and long hours. October challenges your vision and commitment because it brings shorter days, midterms, the distractions of a looming Holiday Season, and the time crunch to meet End of the Year company objectives. This month, we review an energy drink-in-disguise designed to “complement your work hard/play hard lifestyle” with green coffee beans, monk fruit, erythritol, and coconut water. Read more
In this article I wrote for ScienceMeetsFood.org, I discuss the growing world of caffeinated food in general and caffeinated peanut butter in particular. How does caffeinated peanut butter compare to regular peanut butter? To energy drinks?
Science Meets Food is the official blog of the IFT Student Association (IFTSA), which has over 2,500 members from around the world. IFT Student Association members love science and have an everyday passion for food. They are Official Food Geeks, and IFT is their home.
“Moderating caffeine intake can be a challenge. There are some days it seems there’s not enough caffeine in the world to keep your mind focused or your eyes from drooping, and there are other days when it seems like the smallest cup of coffee makes your heart race and hands shake. I’ve studied energy drinks and the science behind their ingredients for 10 years, and I find these products fascinating. I may know a lot about caffeinated drinks, but caffeinated food – well, that’s a whole new ballgame.
According to Caffeine Informer’s caffeine database , there are almost two hundred different food products enhanced with caffeine, including ice cream, granola, brownies, waffles, marshmallows, jelly beans, candy, gum, jerky, and good old fashioned dark chocolate. Okay, so that last one is actually naturally caffeinated… However, the food that interests me most on the list is the caffeinated peanut butter (because hello, it’s peanut butter and it’s delicious).
Read more from the Day in the Life of a Food Scientist series
- Browse the whole series here
- The Unexpected Daily Challenge — What They Didn’t Teach Me in Food Science
- The Xanthan Gum Disaster
- Oyster Crackers, Carbonated Water, and Spitting
- Stability Studies May Lead to Instability
- The Linger — A Food Science Horror Story
- Quality Assurance and Parenting
- Ingredient Testing — Day in the Life of a Food Scientist Quality Professional
- Risk Assessments and 5 Most Shocking Discoveries
- What Consumer Testing is REALLY like
What if you could delay caffeine delivery and make it last longer? This month we review the newest addition to the “energy-drink-in-disguise” brand that continues to defy energy drink stereotypes. We discuss key ingredients, how it compares to other caffeinated beverages of the same strength, and when to consume it per Level of Fatigue.
The Energy Drink of the Month for March 2017 is AvitaeXR.
Key Ingredients and Benefits
The ‘Xtended Release’ beads of caffeine – ZUMXR Proprietary Energy Blend
This energy blend is what makes up those tiny little beads you see floating around in the clear can of AvitaeXR. These beads contain caffeine but since the caffeine is tucked inside the little ball, it delays the delivery of caffeine to your system.
Attention Science Nerds and Chemistry Buffs: How this delayed delivery works is worth a separate post (coming soon). If you’re a science nerd like me, we can geek out together over the magic of delaying (not preventing) digestion in the complex gradient of digestive juices and pH levels in the GI tract.
For the rest of the Avitae line, the source of caffeine is green coffee beans. It’s safe to assume the ‘natural caffeine’ in this product comes from the same source.
- Carbonated Water – makes the beverage crisp and refreshing; Notably, carbonation slightly irritates the stomach, which slightly improves delivery of caffeine through the stomach lining
- Cane Sugar
- Citric Acid – helps combat the bitterness of caffeine
- Natural Flavors
- Sodium Citrate – the sodium salt of citric acid; Used for flavor and as a preservative; has a sour-salty taste
- Pectin – gives a little more mouthfeel (liquid thickness/heaviness)
It’s unusual to find an energy-drink-in-disguise so clean, ingredient-wise, and yet so powerful, caffeine-wise. Avitae has 250 mg caffeine per can, which is about the same as a can of Rockstar Energy (240 mg)!!! However, it’s crucial to note that with AvitaeXR you are only getting 125 mg of caffeine at a time: 125 mg free floating caffeine immediately in the liquid; 125 mg later once your body finally breaks open those little beads. This makes AvitaeXR almost more powerful than Rockstar because of its ability to last.
When to Consume = Fatigue Level 4
***Because this energy drink has an extended release of caffeine, you’ll want to avoid drinking this one if you plan on sleeping in the next 6 hours.***
During the GreenEyedGuide Caffeine Challenge (Day 6), we talked about how Fatigue Level 4 is for Energy Emergencies! This is Level 4 out of 5, and Level 5 is the point where no caffeine can save you. [watch the whole YouTube video]
For Fatigue Level 4, the caffeinated beverage you choose should have the following characteristics:
- Carbonated or concentrated (energy shots)
- Over 200 mg caffeine per serving (400 mg is the daily max for adults)
- Does not have to be sugar-free
To learn more about how carbonation and juice play a role in a drink’s potency, visit the 5 Levels of Fatigue page. The 5 Levels of Fatigue system helps people reap the benefits of caffeine while avoiding addiction, dependence, tolerance, and toxicity,
If you are entering an Energy Emergency and want something STRONG without having to settle for something super sugary and artificial, AvitaeXR is the solution.
Review the entire ENERGY DRINK OF THE MONTH SERIES
- Get your copy of MY BOOK: “Are You a Monster or a Rock Star: A Guide to Energy Drinks — How They Work, Why They Work, How to Use Them Safely”
- HELP ME TURN MY BOOK INTO AN AUDIO BOOK – SUPPORT ME ON PATREON
- Explore the CAFFEINE INFORMER database
- Need help with quitting caffeine? I HIGHLY recommend this guide: Awake: How to Quit from Caffeine for Good