2015 Supply Innovation: PLT Health Solutions
OXYSTORM Standardized Nitrate
A food-based, standardized form of nitrate that can help sports nutrition formulations rise to the challenge.
The use of nitrate for improving human health and enhancing sports performance has been the subject of numerous scientific publications of late. As a result, increasing media attention has been given to this topic as well. The story is actually very interesting and centers around nitric oxide (NO). This signaling molecule plays a variety of critical roles in normal functioning of the body, including neurotransmission, vascular control, mitochondrial respiration and muscle contraction—many of the processes that are critical to exercise performance. Until the past decade or so, it was thought that NO was generated solely through oxidation of the amino acid l-arginine via NO synthase enzymes, with nitrite (NO2-) and nitrate (NO3-) being inert metabolites in the process. However, recent evidence has demonstrated nitrate and nitrite reduction to NO via bacterial and mammalian enzymes occurs and that dietary nitrate ingestion increases plasma and tissue concentrations of nitrate and nitrite. Subsequently, it has been shown that dietary consumption of sodium nitrate or nitrate-rich vegetables (e.g. beet) elevates plasma nitrite and NO concentrations that are associated with several benefits.
Indeed, research has demonstrated that short-term dietary intervention with nitrate improved exercise efficiency and potentially performance (Larsen 2007), the efficiency of muscular work (Bailey 2009) and exercise tolerance during high-intensity exercise (Baily 2009, Bailey 2010, Lansley 2011, Vanhatalo 2010, Vanhatalo 2011). Most of these studies have focused on supplementing nitrate in the 350-500 mg range to achieve these results—although lower levels of nitrate or dose-response studies to determine more precisely an effective level of nitrate consumption need to be conducted. As example, achieving the 350-500 mg level could require 500 mL (about two cups) of beet juice to achieve these levels—which has the potential to cause digestive distress and lacks convenience. In addition to this, the nitrate content of vegetables can vary considerably, dependent on factors such as soil conditions, season, water availability and storage conditions. These reasons make current sources of dietary nitrate challenging to use.
New OXYSTORM Standardized Nitrate is an extract of red spinach (Amaranthus dubius)—one of the richest sources of nitrate in nature. A patent-pending production process for OXYSTORM delivers the highest nitrate content ingredient from the leaves of red spinach—9 percent or 90 mg/gram of product. This level is conservatively five times the nitrate found in beetroot powder and 50 times that found in beet juice—two commonly discussed sources of nitrate for sports nutrition. The levels of nitrate in OXYSTORM are standardized, while the levels found in natural sources such as beetroot powder and beet juice are highly variable based on a variety of phytochemical, harvesting and processing conditions.
Offered as a powder, OXYSTORM is highly water soluble. OXYSTORM does not contain oxalate, which is often found in spinach, and beet greens and which has been found to contribute to kidney stones. It also does not contain sugar—which many beet-based products do in relatively high amounts. Along with its neutral pH and mild flavor, these factors make OXYSTORM an ideal ingredient for a wide variety of sports nutrition formulations—including bars, beverage powders, chewables, nutrition powders, as well as sports and energy drinks. As one of the only standardized forms of nitrate available on the market, OXYSTORM offers sports nutrition formulators the ability to deliver nitrate content with precision.