2020 was a year of canceled sports and closed gyms, but according to the Nutrition Business Journal (NBJ), there was no decline in demand for the sports nutrition category and sales growth remained steady. Not only did overall growth remain stable, beverages and energy beverages also rose by 8.3%.
The numbers suggest that far more people lead active lifestyles and care about the category than just extreme athletes and regular gym goers. Whether for the early morning jogger or the peloton biker at home, the industry offers opportunities to help consumers find “active nutrition”.
This segment is also expanding as dietary supplements and functional food options become more mainstream and accessible. And the market is seeing increasing demand for products that have potential benefits in other categories such as immune health and weight management.
The ingredients capsaicin and beetroot are positioned to support consumers looking to start a more active lifestyle.
Capsaicin is the molecule responsible for the spiciness of hot peppers, and research has shown that it can play a huge role in both energy production and consumption.1,2 Capsaicin by itself is not a great source of energy. Rather, it helps start a specific feature called Non-Exercise Activity Thermogenesis (NEAT), which is an essential part of improving energy expenditure – calories burned – to support an active lifestyle
NEAT usually occurs when performing subordinate tasks or non-sedentary activities that are not considered exercise, sleeping, or eating. By initiating NEAT, capsaicin helps provide more energy to the individual but goes further by also oxidizing and metabolizing fat stores and converting this existing fat into energy for better weight management.2 This means capsaicin supplementation Can help obese individuals improve more efficiently in efforts to begin healthier, more active lifestyles while providing energy benefits to consumers currently living active lifestyles. Even small doses of capsaicin can help improve exercise endurance and promote fat oxidation with increased energy expenditure
Beetroot is one of the best-researched nutritional supplements for an active diet and can be of great support as it is a rich source of nitrates that help increase nitric oxide (NO) levels. 4 Beetroot increases in nitric oxide -Supplementation can support cardiorespiratory functions and mitochondrial efficiency. It is important for the mitochondria to function optimally as they are one of the largest producers of cellular energy in the body and synthesize adenosine triphosphate (ATP) to convert it into energy. By improving blood circulation, blood pressure and oxygen consumption, the entire body can be quickly supplied with fuel.
Additionally, beetroot has been shown to reduce the oxygen cost of ATP synthesis, so increased oxygen helps reduce the time it takes to convert ATP to energy Muscle contraction results in improved performance over longer periods of time, which greatly improves performance in both aerobic and anaerobic exercise or exercise.
A double-blind, placebo-controlled study supporting these benefits found that nitrate-rich beetroot juice can help lower systolic blood pressure and improve muscle oxygenation to increase exercise tolerance and endurance with moderate exercise – and possibly longer-term exercise like exercise gut – increases the measured endurance by up to 16% .6
2020 created a nationwide – and even global – push for health improvement, and regular exercise is an essential step in achieving that goal. Research has shown that capsaicin’s ability to burn fat through increased thermogenesis makes it a viable option for obese people who need a boost of energy to turn a new leaf and an excellent choice to support endurance for those who have already done sport are an integral part of their lives. And the formulation of beetroot into active nutritional supplements can contribute to increased physical performance and endurance coupled with an improvement in oxygen consumption and ATP synthesis, transfer and cost, making it possible to work harder longer.
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President of UnibarSevanti Mehta was brought up to appreciate good health through diet and Ayurvedic tradition. He has made it his life goal to help mankind through scientifically based solutions to improve health and now brings 20 years of experience to the natural product industry. Mehta actively supports eye health and education in poor communities in India.
1 Chung N et al. “Thermogenesis without physical activity (NEAT): a component of total daily energy consumption.” J Exercise Nutrition Biochem. 2018; 22 (2): 23-30.
2 RogersJ et al. “Capsaicinoid Supplementation Decreases% Body Fat and Fat Mass: Adjustment Using Covariates in a Post Hoc Analysis.” BMC Obes. 2018; 5:22.
3 Janssens PL et al. “Acute effects of capsaicin on energy consumption and fat oxidation with a negative energy balance.” Plus one. 2013; 8 (7): e67786.
4 Domínguez R et al. “Effects of Beetroot Juice Supplementation on Cardiorespiratory Endurance in Athletes. A systematic review. ”Nutrients. 2017; 9 (1): 43.
5 Cuenca E. et al. “Effects of Beetroot Juice Supplementation on Performance and Fatigue in a 30 Second Sprint Exercise: A Randomized, Double-Blind, Cross-Over Study.” Nutrient. 2018; 10 (9): 1222.
6 Bailey SJ et al. “Nitrate supplementation reduces the O2 costs of low-intensity exercise and improves tolerance to high-intensity exercise in humans.” J Appl Physiol. 2009; 107 (4): 1144-1155.