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Omniade: The Perfect Sports Hydration Drink

April 1, 2017

Most active people recognize that hydration is important. However, an optimal sports rehydration drink goes far beyond water and carbohydrates.

Omniade: The Perfect Sports Hydration Drink

Makes 12 oz

  • High-glycemic Carbohydrates: Glucose, Sucrose, or Maltodextrin 20-26g
  • Vanilla or Flavorless Whey Protein 5-6g (Soy Protein for a vegan option)
  • Leucine 1g
  • Vitamin C 100mg
  • Vitamin E 60 IU
  • OmniBlue Ocean Minerals 1 tsp

(Feel free to add your own flavorings to taste)

During your workout or athletic event, your muscles will be required to repeatedly generate high levels of force. A proper sports drink during this period of time will help you produce the energy needed to achieve a stronger workout, better athletic performance, and minimize muscle damage that occurs as a natural consequence of exercise, and, most important, sets the stage for a faster recovery following your workout.

Physiological and Metabolic Changes During Exercise and Athletic Performance

Exercise stresses many systems of the body. At the onset, there is an immediate need to produce great amounts of energy; as exercise intensity increases, so do the muscles energy requirements. To accommodate these increased energy needs, the body must initiate multiple physiological and metabolic changes. While these changes are essential for providing an adequate supply of energy to the working muscles, they may also result in transient adverse effects such as muscle damage and immune system suppression.

ATP Replenishment

Muscle fibers need a rapid supply of energy during resistance or cardiovascular activity. This requires the utilization of large numbers of ATP molecules. The breakdown of ATP releases the energy that directly drives muscle contraction. There is however, only enough ATP stored in the muscle for a few seconds of maximal effort. Therefore, ATP has to be rapidly and continuously replenished during repetitive or sustained muscle contraction.

The primary sources for rapid repletion of ATP during intense exercise are creatine phosphate (CP) and muscle glycogen. Unfortunately, CP stores in the muscle are also quite limited and are depleted with just ten to twelve seconds of maximal-intensity work. If you combine the amount of ATP stored in the muscle and the amount of CP available to replenish ATP, you only have enough energy to drive exercise for twelve to eighteen seconds.

The rapid repletion of ATP and CP involves the aerobic energy system or glycolysis. In the anaerobic energy system, muscle glycogen is broken down to generate ATP. Most strength athletes do not realize how much muscle glycogen is used during a training session or game. One set of Bicep curls results in a 12 percent loss of muscle glycogen; three sets results in 35 percent depletion, and six sets results in 40 percent depletion.

Hormonal Changes

During resistance exercise there are changes in a number of key hormones. Anabolic hormones such as testosterone, growth hormone, and IGF-1 are elevated for a short period of time and are not believed to play a major role during exercise. There is also a rise in epinephrine and norepinephrine, two catabolic hormones that increase the breakdown of muscle glycogen and fat for energy.

The two most important regulatory hormones during exercise are insulin and cortisol. The opposite actions of these two hormones affect the degree of muscle damage and glycogen depletion during exercise. In the absence of a proper sports nutrition, insulin levels decline during exercise while levels of cortisol begin to rise.

Effect on the Protein Pool

During sustained exercise, a net muscle protein loss occurs. This is mainly because there is an increased use of branch-chain amino acids (BCAAs) for energy. BCAAs are generated by muscle protein breakdown. Because BCAAs serve as precursors for the synthesis of glutamine, muscle glutamine stores decline as well. Glutamine, the most abundant amino acid in muscles, plays an important role in providing fuel for the immune system. During prolonged stressful exercise, glutamine stores can be almost completely depleted, potentially compromising immune system function.

Muscle Damage

Muscle damage is perhaps the most significant physiological effect of exercise or physical activity. Exercise physiologists measure muscle damage by using a number of key biochemical markers such as 3-methylhistidine, creatine phosphokinase (CPK), and lactate dehydrogenase (LDH). Because 3-methylhistidine is only found in the muscle contractile protein, its presence in the urine indicates that the muscle fibers have been damaged. Like 3-methylhistidine, CPK and LDH are usually found within the muscle fiber but appear in the blood when muscle fiber membranes are damaged.

There is no single cause of exercise-related muscle damage. The three primary causes are physical, hormonal, and biochemical. Initial damage occurs as a result of physical forces acting on the muscle cell. Eccentric exercise, in which muscle fibers lengthen while contracting, places great stress on muscle fibers, resulting in an over stretching and tearing of the contractile proteins, which can lead to inflammation. Some of this damage may be beneficial since it stimulates remodeling of muscle cell fibers, which ultimately results in strength and muscular size gains.

The second cause of muscle damage is hormonal — specifically, the hormone cortisol which stimulates muscle protein breakdown.

The third cause of muscle damage is the generation of free radicals (highly reactive molecules that can damage muscle protein). Free radicals may come from the mitochondria, from capillaries, or even from specific types of cells associated with the immune system. Regardless of their origin, free radicals can damage cell membranes and may indirectly inactivate key enzymes associated with proper functioning of the immune system.

Acute Inflammatory Response

The acute inflammatory response is the body’s response to tissue injury, whether it’s caused by exercise, an ankle injury resulting from a fall, or even a cut. Within hours of an injury, specific cells called neutrophils migrate to the site of the damage, where they begin to remove tissue debris. This process causes inflammation and swelling, which further damage muscle cell membranes. The acute inflammatory response continues for a considerable period of time after exercise (which is one reason why muscle soreness often isn’t felt for twenty-four hours or more).

Immune Response

Resistance exercise triggers a strong immune response. The immune system responds anytime there is cellular damage, whether it's caused by a virus, a wound, or exercise. The immune system’s response to the different types of injuries is quite similar. There is an increase in white blood cells, an increase in natural killer (NK) cells, and an increase in T cells, important fighters of infection. However, during strenuous exercise or physical activity, there is suppression of the immune system as evidenced by a decrease in the number of T Cells and NK Cells. This suppression has been found to be intensity and duration related. The higher the relative exercise intensity and the longer it is performed, the greater the suppression of the immune system. Immune system suppression can last up to seventy-two hours following exercise and may increase your susceptibility to infection.

Fluid Loss

Water, of course, is a vital nutrient that serves many functions. It is the major constituent of blood. Consuming water during exercise helps maintain blood volume, lower body temperature, and reduce stress on the heart. For the endurance athlete, because dehydration represents the number one physiological risk during exercise, the number one nutritional objective is fluid replacement, For an endurance athlete, a loss of 2 percent body water (3.6 pounds for an 180 pound athlete) will compromise performance, In sports such as football, basketball, and soccer fluid losses exceeding 2 percent of body weight are frequently observed.

Resistance exercise does not produce fluid losses to the degree that extended aerobic does, but dehydration is still a factor. In a study, researchers found that dehydration equal to a 1.5 percent loss of body weight adversely affected strength performance.

In summary, during exercise

  • ATP Levels - Depleted
  • Muscle Glycogen - Partially depleted
  • Cortisol Levels - Increased
  • Insulin Levels - Decreased
  • Blood flow to muscles - Increased
  • Protein degradation - increased
  • Muscle damage - increased
  • Immune system - Suppressed
  • Acute inflammatory response - Stimulated
  • Fluid Loss - Increased

Sports Drink Main Goals

  • Increase nutrient delivery to muscles and spare muscle glycogen and protein
  • Limit immune system suppression
  • Minimize muscle damage
  • Set the nutritional stage for a faster recovery following your workout.


Carbohydrate supplementation during exercise not only helps extend endurance but also limits suppression of the immune system and reduces muscle tissue damage. The ideal carbohydrates to use are high-glycemic ones such as sucrose, glucose, and maltodextrin. Drinks that contain large quantities of fructose and high fructose corn syrup may cause gastrointestinal problems, and is absorbed at too slow of a rate to effectively utilized to replenish glucose.


Consuming protein during your workout will limit muscle protein degradation. Protein can also work synergistically with carbohydrate to increase blood insulin levels beyond those produced by carbohydrate alone. Protein has been shown to extend exercise endurance and to increase protein synthesis upon cessation of exercise. The protein of choice because whey is rapidly absorbed and contains all of the essential amino acids, as well as a high percentage of leucine and glutamine, two amino acids that are used extensively during sustained strenuous exercise. The ratio of carbohydrate to protein should be approximately 3-4 grams of carbohydrate to 1 gram of protein, as this formulation is highly digestible.


This amino acid may also be of benefit in a sports drink because it not only stimulates insulin in its own right but also has a positive effect on protein synthesis.

Vitamin C and E

Although many sports drinks contain varying amounts of different vitamins, we recommend adding vitamin E and C because they reduce free radical levels, an important cause of muscle damage.


You should try to fully replace fluid losses that occur during an exercise session. Drink 12 ounces starting ten minutes before and continuing throughout your workout. For maximum effectiveness, consume several ounces every fifteen minutes. In warm weather or when conditions are hot, increase your beverage consumption accordingly.

OmniBlue Ocean Minerals

Our ocean minerals contain naturally bio-available sodium, potassium, and chlorides electrolytes and easily blends into any liquid. Electrolytes not only help replace what’s lost due to sweating but also encourages continued fluid consumption because they stimulate thirst. Additionally, OmniBlue contains 100% of your daily magnesium requirement. Magnesium plays a pivotal role in both anaerobic and aerobic energy production, particularly in the metabolism of adenosine triphosphate (ATP). The synthesis of ATP requires magnesium-dependent enzymes called 'ATPases'. These enzymes have to work extremely hard: the average human can store no more than about 3oz of ATP, yet during strenuous exercise, the rate of turnover of ATP is phenomenal, with as much as 15kgs of ATP per hour being broken down and reformed.

Key Takeaways

  • Physical activity depletes muscle glycogen, stimulates the acute inflammatory response, increases protein breakdown, and causes muscle damage.
  • Omniade sports drink during exercise helps maintain immune system function and blunts the rise of cortisol.
  • Omniade sports drink offers additional endurance benefits and also sets the stage for a faster recovery after your workout.
  • Consuming Omniade sports drink ten minutes before your workout will enable you to have a better workout.