We all know what exhaustion feels like. Feeling burnt out by work, struggling to find the motivation to exercise and feelings of general tiredness plague many of us.
What causes fatigue?
It's common for Americans to experience fatigue - even without health conditions associated with chronic fatigue.1 It's also common to experience fatigue during intense exercise, resulting in decreased performance.2,3 Both general fatigue (feelings of tiredness) and fatigue experienced during exercise have mechanisms that are influenced by multiple factors in the central nervous system, including adenosine accumulation in the brain.4 Adenosine is a neurotransmitter that interacts with receptors in the brain to induce drowsiness and sleepiness. Caffeine works by blocking the adenosine receptors and stimulating the central nervous system.5,6
A 2016 supplement use survey conducted by the Council for Responsible Nutrition (CRN) suggests that of the 170 million supplement users in the United States, the second most prevalent reason for taking supplements is to increase energy.7 Many products with claims of increased energy contain some type of central nervous system stimulant, like caffeine. Market research continues to suggest that the demand for more energy will continue to grow, especially among millennials who want to achieve maximum levels of mental and physical performance every day.8
When it Comes to Caffeine, Clean-label Matters
Of the consumers that are looking for a boost in energy, 1 in 4 are committed to finding safe products with all-natural ingredients.8 Caffeine, the standard active ingredient in energy-boosting products, can come from both natural and synthetic sources. Caffeine naturally occurs in over 60 different plants and is most commonly consumed in the diet through coffee and tea.5 Natural and synthetic caffeine are chemically identical, but natural caffeine - especially that sourced from tea plants - can provide a range of health benefits like improved fat oxidation, improved antioxidant status and benefits during exercise.9-15
A Cup o' Tea Won't Cut It
So why not just brew a cup of tea before working out? Although brewed tea is a natural solution for consuming energy-boosting caffeine, there are limitations. The caffeine content in brewed tea can vary based on plant type, growing conditions and brewing conditions. Studies have shown ranges of 40-120 mg caffeine per 8 oz serving of brewed tea.5 The low end of this range falls below the dose at which increased energy, focus and athletic performance benefits of caffeine have been supported by research, so your cup of tea may not offer the same pick-me-up as more concentrated caffeine sources.
Chemical Extracts Aren't the Only Answer
To alleviate the variability of caffeine content, energy-boosting product manufacturers commonly extract caffeine from natural sources and concentrate it at higher, more consistent levels. The downside to these extracts is that most require the use of chemical solvents that remove other beneficial active compounds. According to CRN research, consumers' number one reason for purchasing supplements is overall health and wellness benefits, so why strip your product of its natural health-benefitting compounds?
XSurge™: Water-extracted Caffeine
Kemin has gone to great lengths to find a proprietary ratio of green and black tea (Camelia sinesis) that provides optimal levels of caffeine for a natural energy boost. By using a water extraction process, our tea retains the catechins from green tea and the theaflavins from black tea to provide additional health benefits. In addition to the benefits of caffeine, results from clinical trials of XSurge have shown improved antioxidant status, muscle recovery and reduced inflammation after damaging exercise.
Add XSurge to Your Formulation
XSurge meets two popular consumer needs by providing an energy boost alongside antioxidant and exercise-recovery benefits. Click here to learn more about our safe and natural tea extract.
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