Biogen Cytogen RaceMix
Biogen Cytogen RaceMix is marketed as a multi stage energy and electrolyte solution. Essentially it is a carbohydrate drink that consists of a blend of sugars that exhibit different rates of absorption. In addition there are the standard electrolytes in the form of sodium and potassium as well as other nutrients such as vitamin C, tyrosine, glutamine, phosphatidylserine and caffeine plus a little cinnamon extract.
[table caption=”Nutritional Information per 50 g serving” width=”500″ ]
Energy, 180 kcal
Protein, 1.2 g
Carbohydrate, 44.8 g
Sodium, 259 mg
Potassium, 61 mg
Phosphatidylserine, 100 mg
L-Tyrosine, 200 mg
Vitamin C, 100 mg
L- Glutamine, 500 mg
Caffeine, 25 mg
To begin this review let’s look at the most important element; the carbohydrate content. A single serving provides almost 45 g of carbohydrate. For endurance requirements this falls quite nicely between the recommended intake of 30-60 g per hour for sessions lasting 1 to 3 hours.
The type of carbohydrate is an interesting one in that both fast acting glucose (dextrose) or glucose polymers (maltose, maltotriose) are combined with the slow acting sugar isomaltulose (Palatinose™). Isomaltulose is a sugar made up of one molecule of glucose and one molecule of fructose, similar to sucrose. Due to its structure and absorptive qualities it has less of an effect on blood sugar levels and insulin secretion. This promoted interest in using it for sports drinks as these characteristics can improve fat oxidation which is usually inhibited by insulin production and may subsequently enhance performance. However the slow absorption rate of isomaltulose is a limiting factor for high intensity exercise and as such “low GI” fuels are seldom recommended here.
Cytogen RaceMix could be the perfect fuel for you if you require a slower, more sustained energy supply for moderate intensity or slow and long sessions. It could also be valuable as a source of carbohydrate leading up to an event or training session particularly if you struggle with “high GI” drinks or tolerance issues. A carbohydrate content of 9 g per 100 ml if mixed according to instructions provides a hypertonic drink but this could be diluted to provide a hypotonic drink that is better tolerated and more quickly absorbed.
The electrolyte content provides sodium in a good range (52 mg/100 ml) and a little potassium (12 mg/100ml). The potassium content is nothing to write home about although there is little requirement to replace potassium during or after exercise.
Phosphotidylserine has limited research into its effect on exercise and performance although some evidence is emerging that it may benefit cognitive function during exercise, particularly when taken with caffeine. Caffeine is a hot favourite in many sports products at the moment and a large body of evidence supports its effect on the perception of fatigue and consequently performance. However 25 mg per serving is below the level used in a majority of studies and is possibly below the threshold that could illicit a positive response in those that do responder.
The benefit of the amino acid tyrosine and cinnamon extract are not well established and not really worth focusing on.
The amino acid glutamine is another ingredient found in Cytogen and while it may not enhance performance, recovery or health acutely more evidence is emerging that it may improve gut health in athletes and benefit immune function too.
Cytogen is available in 5 flavours (Grape, Cherry, Naartjie, Orange, Apple) but I have only tried the Cherry version and find it to taste great. I use it regularly on long trail runs and have tolerated it extremely well. Whether it is the carbohydrate alone or the combination with a little caffeine it has picked me up during a few tough moments and it will be an option I continue to use for a top up drink before sessions and in the early, moderate intensity stages.
And best of all Biogen Cytogen RaceMix is an Informed Sport product, low risk and better suited to athletes who should be taking note of the quality of supplement they choose.
You can find Cytogen RaceMix at Dischem for R279.95 (and currently on special for R199.95 – December 2013).
- Great tasting carbohydrate drink
- Blend of immediate and slow acting sugars for energy
- Source of sodium and potassium for replacing losses
- Addition of phosphatidylserine and caffeine for cognitive and perception of fatigue benefits
- Perfect for pre-event top up and moderate intensity exercise