Core Nutritionals : PWO Chocolate Brownie Batter 4lb
It’s been called the most important meal of the day.
Eating high quality, fast-acting carbohydrates and protein create the conditions for growth after a workout. Core PWO takes the guesswork out of post workout recovery, containing the fast-acting proteins and carbs needed to maximize muscle recovery after weight training.
- 2 scoops per serving.
- 28 servings per container.
- High carb for maximum recovery.
It has been called the most important meal of the day, “the anabolic window,” and eating for anabolism. Whatever name you give it, the premise remains: post workout (PWO) nutrition is crucial to reaching your fitness and physique goals. Post workout nutrition plays a number of critical anabolic (tissue building) functions, chief among them the maximization of glycogen storage and protein synthesis, while simultaneously minimizing protein breakdown and the excessive release of catabolic (tissue destroying) hormones. Incomplete or insufficient PWO nutrition is like fueling your new Maserati with regular unleaded – you simply don’t do it.
This all raises the question: what is the ideal post workout nutrition? Is it well known, or a secret? Maybe a certain ratio of carbohydrates to protein, or fat to protein; maybe the timing and frequency? In fact, the situation is vastly less complex, more well-known, and easier to implement than most would have you believe.
High quality, fast-acting carbohydrates and protein have been shown time and again to induce the most optimal conditions for growth in clinical studies – and that is precisely what Core has attempted to emulate with Core PWO. Core PWO takes the guesswork out of post workout recovery, containing the fast-acting proteins and carbs (whey isolate, dextrose, Carb10™ and Cluster Dextrin®), along with other anabolic agents (free-form L-Leucine and Velositol®) needed to maximize muscle recovery after weight training. These ingredients quickly replenish muscle glycogen and shuttle much needed amino acids to muscle cells. Whether you are bulking up or slimming down, all of these ingredients are crucial for proper recovery.
Recovery Carb Blend (Dextrose, Carb 10™ and Cluster Dextrin®):
As mentioned above, one of the main goals post workout is to restore muscle glycogen that has been depleted during the workout. The body will even break down muscle tissue for this purpose if an adequate influx of glucose – obtained from the consumption of carbohydrates – is not provided. For this reason, it is vital to include carbohydrates in the post-workout drink.
Though opinion varies, the scientific literature is relatively clear that fast–digesting carbohydrates such as dextrose, Carb 10™, and Cluster Dextrin® create optimal conditions for the post-workout synthesis of both skeletal muscle protein and muscle glycogen. Not only have all three of Core PWO’s carbohydrates sources demonstrated higher rates of post-exercise glycogenesis (glycogen resynthesis) as compared to other carbohydrate sources, they have also been shown to optimize insulin response and blunt cortisol release to a greater degree than other carbohydrate sources.
Dextrose functions at such a higher capacity because of molecular structure, given that it is otherwise known as pure glucose – your body’s preferred energy substrate and the necessary component for the synthesis and resynthesis of glycogen. Bypassing the lengthy and metabolically costly process of digestion and breakdown, dextrose can be absorbed directly through the gut into the bloodstream and can cause an insulin response faster than any other carb. Additionally, since dextrose is already in the form the body requires, it can be used immediately for glycogen replenishment.
Carb10™ is an entirely different creature, which functions in PWO to round out the insulin response. Created not from maltodextrin or glucose, but rather peas, Carb10™ is a clean and sustained means of providing your body with its nutritional needs in the post workout environment. Carb10™ also possesses low osmolality, a term used to describe the concentration of a solution. In this case, low osmolality means that Carb10’s transit through the stomach and into the intestine’s is both quicker and more efficient than other carbohydrates sources – meaning it delivers nutrients quickly, while still being low glycemic and reducing bloat. Think of it like other carbohydrates causing a traffic jam, while Carb10™ cruises through the carpool lane.
In total, Carb10™ possesses a wide range of benefits. Including:
- Minimal blood-sugar and insulin response
- Fast gastric-emptying formula reduces bloating
- Low osmolality
- Prebiotic, non-allergenic, non-GMO and gluten-free.
Cluster Dextrin®, the last of PWO’s carb sources, is derived from corn. Though dissimilar in molecular structure and source from Carb10™, it’s similar in terms of its low osmolality leading to expedient stomach clearing and low bloating. Research conducted on top swimmers, swimming in a flowing water pool, confirmed that Cluster Dextrin’s fast gastric emptying contributed to increased endurance (longer swim times). Swimmers provided a sports drink containing Cluster Dextrin had approximately 50% longer swim time than swimmers provided a mixture of water and glucose only.
In combination, the carbohydrates in Core PWO, in their precise serving sizes, interact to form a comprehensive post-workout nutrition strategy:
- Dextrose acts quickly to create an immediate supply of glucose and to stimulate post-workout insulin levels.
- Due to their molecular structure, Carb-10™ and Cluster Dextrin balance that insulin response.
- Together, they all rapidly, and in a sustained fashion, provide your body with a prime environment for the synthesis of both glycogen and skeletal muscle
- And most importantly, they do so without the bloat!
Clinical research is clear that carbohydrates of this type, in combination with whey protein isolate, rapidly reverse high levels of cortisol and low levels of insulin that are associated with high intensity exercise. The rapid, but very beneficial, influx of glucose from oral carbohydrate supplementation quickly suppresses cortisol and the negative effect it has on the expression of metabolically critical proteins and growth factors – ensuring that myocytes (muscle cells) function in an ideal environment. In addition, these carbohydrates induce a beneficial insulin response, the effects of which include stimulating glycogen storage, the transport of glucose into muscle cell mitochondria, and an increase in amino acid utilization.
Cold-Processed Microfiltered Non-GMO Whey Protein Isolate:
If the post-workout environment were a jungle, whey protein isolate would be the lion – its king. While it is difficult to overstate the critical role that post-exercise protein consumption plays in both a macro (body composition) and micro (small-scale, physiological changes) context, some ambiguity remains: what is the ideal form, frequency, timing, and amount of protein consumption post-exercise? Luckily for you, Core Nutritionals’ research hounds have crunched the numbers and read the studies for you, and the result is a very precise amount of whey protein isolate included in Core PWO.
In a statement that should not surprise a single athlete or casual weightlifter, intense resistance training has a profound effect on the function and structure of skeletal muscle and muscle proteins. Immediately following an intense bout of resistance exercise, a process known as muscle protein breakdown – with its sidekick, leucine oxidation – begin to literally tear down your skeletal muscle from the inside. While resistance training simultaneously increases a process known as protein synthesis, the fractional synthesis rate (how quickly the protein is synthesized) is often far exceeded by the rate of muscle protein breakdown and leucine oxidation. The result is that, in that absence of mitigating factors such as post-workout nutrition, your body is in a state of negative protein balance – i.e., catabolism.
In order to counteract a negative intramuscular protein balance, a number of things need to occur – mostly, a rapid increase in the availability of amino acids, and the optimization of several metabolically critical hormones (such as insulin). The combination of protein and carbohydrates contained in Core PWO achieves precisely this balance, and research on whey protein and dextrose in combination demonstrates that this combination maximizes the stimulation of muscle protein synthesis and results in even greater muscle anabolism than either alone.
Free Form Leucine:
The branch-chained amino acids leucine, isoleucine, and valine are famous for their role in skeletal muscle protein synthesis and metabolism, and additionally comprise approximately one-third of all skeletal muscle protein. Of the three, leucine is both the most physiologically important with respect to muscle mass, and the most extensively studied. Data on leucine demonstrate this amino acid plays critical roles in stimulating skeletal muscle protein synthesis, and ribosomal biogenesis and assembly (the literal building of muscle tissue), along with playing a lesser role in insulin signaling and gluconeogenic processes. As a result of these diverse roles, leucine has been demonstrated to significantly stimulate skeletal muscle protein synthesis, and attenuate protein degradation, by both insulin-mediated and non-insulin mediated mechanisms.
Leucine’s insulin-mediated effects are largely the result of its activation of the classical insulin receptor substrate (IRS)/phosphatidylinositol (PI) 3-kinase (PI3K)/Akt/mTOR signal transduction pathway. In this pathway, the bonding of a substrate (Insulin activates a compound known as PI3K, which in turn activates, Akt. Once phosphorylated and activated, Akt signals the release of the famous mammalian target of rapmycin (mTOR). mTOR then increases the translation of muscle-cell ribosomal proteins that increase ribosome biogenesis, which is the literal production of proteins. Leucine plays a critical role in all of this, creating the translation initiation factors that are the rate-limiting step in the production of the ribosomes spoken about above. Carbohydrates alone, other essential amino acids, and non-essential amino acids have not been shown to have the stimulatory effects on muscle protein synthesis – leucine alone has, highlighting is primacy as a muscle protein activator. Leucine has additionally been shown to positively regulate protein synthesis independent of insulin. In certain trials where rapamycin and leucine were co-administered, rapamycin showed only partial inhibition of leucine’s effects on muscle protein synthesis. Rapamycin is also a critical component to the PI3K/Akt/mTOR pathway, as the mTOR (mammalian target of rapamycin) suggests. One of rapamycin’s primary functions is to inhibit mTOR. So, if leucine-mediate protein synthesis is only partially blocked by rapamycin, but rapamycin fully inhibits mTOR, this suggests that leucine-mediate protein synthesis is only partially dependent on the PI3K pathway.
Velositol™, a patented complex of amylopectin/chromium, is a fascinating compound – with emerging clinical data to suggest that it is effective in significantly enhancing skeletal muscle protein synthesis when combined with whey protein (vs whey alone).
In a double-blind crossover study, featuring 10 exercise-trained adults, researchers combined Velositol™ with 6g of whey protein to measure what effects, if any, the compound would exert on skeletal muscle protein synthesis. (The control group consumed 6g of whey alone.) After collecting baseline muscle biopsies – to measure phenylalanine, a marker of muscle-building – the subjects performed eight reps of leg extensions. A final muscle biopsy was taken post-workout, to measure the changes in muscle protein synthesis between the study and control group.
The results were significant: the researchers found that muscle protein synthesis had nearly doubled in the Velositol™ group, compared to the control. The researchers hypothesized that the mechanism of action of Velositol is the stimulated uptake of leucine and other amino acids due to an influx of insulin (from the chromium).
While further study is warranted, the existing data on Velositol™ suggests it’s a must-have addition to any recovery matrix.
For references, see below file;
Core Nutritionals : ABC
Core ABC is the athlete’s BCAA.
The most effective, scientifically-established ratio of BCAAs because we know it’s the difference between your first mile and your last. Include clinically-verified servings of beta-alanine, citrulline malate, and glutamine because we know your last rep depends on it.
- 2 scoops per serving.
- 50 servings per container.
- Comprehensive recovery blend.
Rep by rep. Mile by mile. Breath by breath. Every muscle screams at you with pleas of mercy; every bone aches to its core from the pressure. Yet, you still don’t quit – you push on. By hook, or by crook, you will make it. You will succeed. You will win.
You see, you’re an athlete. You are someone defined to your core by the competitive drive to better yourself at all costs. You need neither trophies, nor accolades; neither cheers, nor recognition. You pay the sweat price for every gain marked in your battle-worn ledger, detailing the struggle your body has endured.
You’re an athlete, and so are we. We don’t make Core ABC for everyone, we make it for you and us. We use the most effective, scientifically-established ratio of BCAAs because we know it’s the difference between your first mile and your last. We include clinically-verified servings of beta-alanine, citrulline malate, and glutamine because we know your last rep depends on it. We know this because we know you, and we know ourselves.
Core ABC is the athlete’s BCAA. It was formulated by athletes, for athletes, for the needs only an athlete can understand. If you can’t say the same about your BCAA, then it may be time for a switch.
If one were to think of the body as a construction project, amino acids would be the most basic building materials: raw lumber, mortar, bricks, and so on. While the assembly of these building blocks is of course critically important to the function of the building – and one of the amino acids, leucine, controls its own assembly – the quality and availability of the materials themselves is arguably more important. Not enough concrete? The foundation cracks and the building falls.
Your body is the exact same way. It is comprised of various amino acids, both essential and non-essential, that comprise the cellular basis of each and every cell in your body. When it comes down to skeletal muscle, the three most important are known as the BCAAs – or branch chained amino acids. Comprised of leucine, isoleucine, and valine, these three little amino acids effectively control the rate at which your muscle grows (hypertrophies), its contractile force, its endurance, and so on – to say they are massively important is an understatement. For this reason, they form the basis of any competently-designed supplement protocol.
Collectively, as stated above, the branch-chained amino acids leucine, isoleucine, and valine are famous for their role in skeletal muscle protein synthesis and metabolism, and additionally comprise approximately one-third of all skeletal muscle protein. Of the three, leucine is both the most physiologically important with respect to muscle mass, and the most extensively studied. Data on leucine demonstrate this amino acid plays critical roles in stimulating skeletal muscle protein synthesis, and ribosomal biogenesis and assembly (the literal building of muscle tissue), along with playing a lesser role in insulin signaling and gluconeogenic processes. As a result of these diverse roles, leucine has been demonstrated to significantly stimulate skeletal muscle protein synthesis, and attenuate protein degradation, by both insulin-mediated and non-insulin mediated mechanisms.
Leucine’s insulin-mediated effects are largely the result of its activation of the classical insulin receptor substrate (IRS)/phosphatidylinositol (PI) 3-kinase (PI3K)/Akt/mTOR signal transduction pathway. In this pathway, the bonding of a substrate (glucose) eventually activates a compound known as Akt. Once phosphorylated and activated, Akt signals the release of the famous mammalian target of rapmycin (mTOR). mTOR then increases the translation of muscle-cell ribosomal proteins that increase ribosome biogenesis, which is the literal production of proteins. Leucine has additionally been shown to positively regulate protein synthesis independent of insulin. In certain trials where rapamycin and leucine were co-administered, rapamycin showed only partial inhibition of leucine’s effects on muscle protein synthesis.
In more practical terms, there is a significant body of evidence demonstrating the positive effect of BCAA’s on athletic performance. Extensive studies in exercise-trained populations reveal that, collectively, BCAA’s may:
- Reduce total muscle soreness after intense resistance training, and/or further delay its onset.
- Decrease muscle recovery time between bouts of intense resistance exercise training.
- Increase lean body mass when used daily, in conjunction with diet and exercise.
While products with larger BCAA ratios (ratio of leucine, to isoleucine, to valine) have recently flooded the market, Core Nutritionals has remained with the gold standard of 2:1:1. This decision is made in recognition of the fact that, for all its potential benefits, there is no evidence demonstrating a realized effect of a larger BCAA ratio – and in fact, all the benefits mentioned above derive from evidence using the gold standard 2:1:1 ratio.
Carnosine is a bit of an odd duck: we know that it is crucial for muscle function, and that dietary sources of caronsine are essential, but we don’t know precisely how its working. Moreover, for decades, we had no idea how to increase intramuscular concentrations, as exogenous carnosine sources degraded in the body so fast as to be effectively useless.
Enter beta-alanine. Simply a different iteration of one of the amino acids that comprises carnosine itself (alanine), beta-alanine has proven to be the most effective means of significantly increasing intramuscular concentrations of carnosine – and therefore of promoting all of carnosine’s various beneficial effects on muscle performance. If that weren’t enough, beta-alanine has also demonstrated beneficial physiological effects independent of its parent compound. In order to understand why, though, we need to first understand some of the basic behind carnosine itself.
Carnosine, a cytoplasmic dipeptide synthesized from the precursors L-histidine and l-alanine, is present in high concentrations in skeletal muscle and plays a pivotal role as a, “chemical buffer” in myocytes (muscle cells). It has long been known that carnosine concentrations are highest in glycolytic, rather than oxidative muscle fibers (roughly speaking, explosive vs., endurance muscle fibers, respectively), and thus long hypothesized that this amino acid is required for sustained performance during supramaximal exercise. Recent research demonstrates that carnosine exerts its physiological effects in long hypoxic (low oxygen) drives by functioning as a high-capacity pH buffer in skeletal muscle, preventing the pH ratio of plasma from dropping too low – and therefore preventing crucial pH-dependent processes such as protein synthesis from being inhibited by acidosis.
Despite its critical role in skeletal muscle anaerobic performance, intramyocellular synthesis of carnosine is rate-limited by the availability of l-alanine. Unfortunately, the majority of literature demonstrates that attempting to increase intramuscular levels of carnosine via either direct carnosine or alanine supplementation is largely ineffective due to carnosine/alanine pharmacokinetics. Enter beta-alanine. Research with beta-alanine demonstrates consistent and dose-dependent increases to intramuscular carnosine concentrations with beta-alanine supplementation, with certain studies showing an increase of 40-60% with chronic administration. These same literature reveal a synergistic effect of exercise on beta-alanine supplementation, whereby the muscle adaptive changes associated with resistance training promote further intramuscular carnosine production in response to beta-alanine supplementation.
In simpler language, this essentially means that beta-alanine is a dietary supplement that promotes its own effects in combination with exercise. As you exercise, you simultaneously intensify beta-alanine’s physiological actions – both directly, as well as in the production of intramuscular carnosine. Once ingested, beta-alanine’s exercise-specific beneficial activity is well-established. Elevation of intramuscular caronsine content via beta-alanine supplementation has been show to improve performance in the following ways:
- Both acute and chronic increases in total work capacity, measured by total volume during exercise sessions.
- Highly significant increases to TTE (total time to exhaustion), one of the most accurate and comprehensive measures of endurance. In various trials, beta-alanine supplementation has been shown to increase TTE by upwards of 20%.
- Increases to total muscle power output in both acute and chronic trials, suggesting that beta-alanine’s most significant benefit is to those engaging in power-dependent resistance training.
In total, a significant body of research exists to suggest that beta-alanine may significantly increase muscle power output, strength, training volume and output, overall performance in hypoxic (oxygen-deprived) conditions and peak VO2 max (oxygen holding capacity).
These myriad benefits make beta-alanine both one of the most-studied, and most well-rounded dietary supplements. Beta-alanine not only has direct, actionable physiological effects, but also promotes critical muscle physiologic adaptations that promote its own effects.
Citrulline is a non-essential, non-protein amino acid heavily involved in the urea cycle. Citrulline is also a critical source of endogenous (natural) arginine, as it is rapidly and efficiently converted to arginine in the vascular endothelium and other tissues. Arginine, in turn, is used as the substrate by NOS (nitric oxide synthase) to produce NO, more commonly known as nitric oxide.
Citrulline’s benefits have been shown to be greater than its parent compound. While arginine undergoes direct hepatic (liver) metabolism through the enzyme arginase, citrulline bypasses hepatic metabolism entirely and it is delivered straight to the bloodstream. The result is that gut absorption and plasma (blood) bioavailability studies comparing citrulline and arginine have shown two things. First, that citrulline is less readily destroyed and has greater absorption than arginine. Second, that citrulline supplementation increases arginine levels more effectively than arginine supplementation itself.
This translates to promising results. For example, animal studies show a significant increase in anaerobic performance at a 250mg/kg/day serving of citrulline, while studies in humans implicate citrulline in both aerobic and anaerobic performance increases. As a critical part of the urea cycle, citrulline’s performance benefits are thought to be a result of its role in ammonia clearance. Citrulline is implicated in reducing the oxygen cost of muscle processes, along with increasing the rate of post-exercise ATP and phosphocreatine replenishment. As ATP and phosphocreatine are the body’s ‘exercise fuel,’ this may result in citrulline delaying time to exhaustion in aerobic and anaerobic exercise.
Prior to discussing the physiological effects of glutamine – and more specifically, whether or not it poses any tangible benefits to the proliferation of skeletal muscle tissue – we need to discuss its place in supplementation, in general. Glutamine is perhaps the most lamented of all the amino acids, regularly denigrated to the point that it’s a joke to many athletes. This is largely a problem of perception: glutamine is not, specifically speaking, an anabolic amino acid, and therefore is of little use as it pertains to, “building tissue.” But, “building tissue” is not the only purpose a supplement may have, and the corollary, preserving tissue (or anti-catabolism) is arguably as important. It is in this capacity that glutamine shines, and for this reason it is included in Core ABC.
The literature in this context is encouraging. Various studies demonstrate that glutamine supplementation may suppress or inhibit the action of enzymes known as proteases, responsible for the hydrolytic breakdown of protein and amino acids into smaller compounds. These studies show both site-specific and whole-body reductions in this process known as, “proteolysis” in the later stages of skeletal muscle recovery. While encouraging, these data are perhaps not as promising as glutamine’s more indirect effects on the catabolic process – namely its effect on glucose metabolism. In both in vitro and in vivo trials, glutamine has shown the ability to promote the synthesis and storage of glycogen (glycogenesis), both in concert with an independent of carbohydrate ingestion.
These effects are most pronounced in physiologic situations where carbohydrate metabolism reliant on insulin signaling are compromised – such as the chronic caloric deficits present in a dieting situation. In this context, glutamine may function as a critical addition, potentiating the body’s glycogen synthesis and storage response; maximizing the limited amount of carbohydrates a dieter may be ingesting.
1: Valerio, A., D’antona, G., et al. BCAAs, Mitochondrial Biogenesis, and Healthspan: An Evolutionary Perspective. Aging. May 2011. 3(5), 464-470.
2: Bajotto, G., Sato, Y., et al. Effect of BCAA Supplementation During Unloading on Regulatory Components of Protein Synthesis in Atrophied Soleus Muscles. European Journal of Applied Physiology. 2011. 111, 1815-1828.
3: Borgenvik, M., Nordin, M., et al. Alterations in Amino Acid Concentrations in the Plasma and Muscle in Human Subjects during 24 Hour of Simulated Adventure Racing. European Journal of Applied Physiology. 2012. Published Ahead of Print.
4: a Luz, Claudia, Nicastro, H., et al. Potential Therapeutic Effects of BCAA Supplementation on Resistance Exercise-Based Muscle Damage in Humans. Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition. 2011. 8(23).
5: Dualano, A, et al. Branched-Chain Amino Acids Supplementation Enhances Exercise Capacity and Lipid Oxidation During Endurance Exercise After Muscle Glycogen Depletion. Journal of Sports Medicine and Physical Fitness. 2011.51(5), 82-88.
6: Hsu, M., Chien, K., et al. Effects of BCAA, Arginine, and Carbohydrate Combined Drink on Post-Exercise Biochemical Response and Psychological Condition. Chinese Journal of Physiology. April 2011. 542), 71- 78.
7: Glynn, E., Fry, C., Drummond, M., Timmerman, K., Dhanani, S., Volpi, E., Rasmussen, B. Excess Leucine Intake Enhances Muscle Anabolic Signaling but Not Net Protein Anabolism in Young Men and Women. The Journal of Nutrition. 2010. 140(11), 1970-1976.
8: Sharp, C., Pearson, D. Amino Acid Supplements and Recovery from High-Intensity Resistance Training. Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research. 2010. 24(4), 1125-1130.
9: Ipoglou, T., King, R., Polman, R., Zanker, C. Daily L-Leucine Supplementation in Novice Trainees During a 12-Week Weight Training Program. International Journal of Sports Physiology and Performance. 2011. 6(1), 38-80.
10: Jourdan, C., et al. Body Fat Free Mass is Associated with the Serum Metabolite Profile in A Population Based Study. PLOS One. 2012. 7(6), e40009.
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