Perpetuem Shelf Life after Mixing

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Perpetuem Shelf Life after Mixing

Postby vt_mruhlin » Sat Sep 18, 2010 5:58 am

For my long runs, I mix perpetuem into a thick batter and carry it in a flask. Often I find it difficult to mix the right amount for a single flask and usually end up with and extra flask or 2, which sits in my fridge for weeks at a time.

I've noticed it eventually starts separating and leaving a clearer gel at the bottom of the flask.

Is there any chemical breakdown happening that affects the nutritional quality of the perpetuem, or is that just gravity doing its thing? How long does perpetuem last after you've mixed it?
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Re: Perpetuem Shelf Life after Mixing

Postby steve-born » Mon Sep 20, 2010 4:06 pm

Hello vt_mruhlin (please include your first name when you post!) -

At some point in time the protein component in Perpetuem will separate from the carbohydrate and fat components and settle to the bottom of a bottle or flask. This will naturally occur if there are no preservatives in the product, which would help keep the carbohydrate, protein, and fat components mixed together in solution. There are no preservatives in Perpetuem, however... we don't want you to consume them so we don't put any in our products.

In the article "The Hammer Nutrition Fuels - What They Are and How to Use Them" ( ... .1252.html) the following is written:

Important FAQ's regarding Sustained Energy and Perpetuem

By design, neither Sustained Energy nor Perpetuem contain any artificial preservatives. Preservatives provide absolutely no benefits for athletic performance or general health—we consider them health hazards, in fact—which is why we do not include them in either of these products, or any of the Hammer Nutrition fuels.

As a result of this, however, once mixed in solution the protein component in both Sustained Energy and Perpetuem is affected in the following ways:

1. At some point in time it will eventually sour and no longer be acceptable for consumption.

2. It tends to separate after awhile and may settle on the bottom of a bottle or hydration pack bladder.

We believe that not having artificial preservatives in the products is far more important than these two inconveniences; however, they are things that you need to remember when using Sustained Energy or Perpetuem. With that in mind, here are some questions we frequently receive, along with the answers to those questions:

Q: How soon after I make Sustained Energy or Perpetuem do I have to drink it?

A: Ideally, it should be within 3–5 hours, with up to perhaps 6–8 hours (depending on the temperature) being the longest we recommend. Dr. Bill Misner explains:

Energy drink powders (such as Sustained Energy and Perpetuem) contain no preservatives and are predisposed to change when in solution. Time, temperature, humidity, environmental airborne or endogenous microbes, and/or oxidation factors may cause fatty acids to turn rancid or proteins to "sour" in the presence of long chain or short chain carbohydrates. A prime example is found in pasteurized milk. Milk typically sours in stages as one type of bacteria is replaced by another. Bacilli convert protein into ammonia products, and the pH rises. The odor or taste of spoiled milk is apparent once this has happened. We have observed this phenomenon in our soy–based products, Sustained Energy and Perpetuem, if the product is mixed prior to an event, then not kept cold or consumed within 3–5 hours.

Athletes should be encouraged to keep pre–mixed protein–enhanced or lipid–containing carbohydrate drinks under 59° F (15° C) or ideally at a cooler 40–45° F (approx 4.5 — 7.25° C) in order to keep fermentation of environmental bacteria from proliferating in the drink mixture. Freezing the drink the night before an event may result in keeping the macronutrient contents intact and inhibit bacterial growth potential. Once the drink is soured to taste or has become noxious to olfactory sensed odor, then it is advised that the drink not be consumed.

Q: If I mix Sustained Energy or Perpetuem and keep it in the refrigerator for a day or two, will it break down any of the desired properties due to sitting for a while and not being used right away?

A: The effectual benefits ("desired properties") are not lost, but the l–carnitine in both products may deteriorate somewhat, forming crystals within the mix since it is very hygroscopic (has an affinity for water). The deterioration, if any, is minimal in 48 hours post–mix, refrigerated. However, for best results we recommend using Sustained Energy or Perpetuem as soon as possible after mixing.

--- END ---

I would suggest that you not use premixed Perpetuem if it's been in the fridge for over 2 days, perhaps 3 at the most. Most likely the mixture won't have "gone bad" for perhaps up to a week in the fridge but I wouldn't want to take that chance... I'd rather consume a drink mix that is as fresh and potent as possible.

I hope this information is helpful!

Sincerely -

Steve Born
Fueling Expert
Event Sponsorship Coordinator
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Re: Perpetuem Shelf Life after Mixing

Postby Steelcyclist » Thu Sep 30, 2010 12:29 pm

This is a great question I'd like to explore a bit more.

I've encountered this before, and a perfect example is on a double century in Norther California in May. The ambient temperateure was in the upper 80s to low 90s during the day. We were out for 14 hours, and so I had plenty of time to consider some ideas to slow down spoilage.

I was carrying a 2 hour bottle, but would love to have had a 3+ hour bottle. Spoilage would occur between 1:50 - 2:00hrs. So I occasionally would have to dump the last bits of Sustained Energy, because as the liquid level would get low, and bottle temperature would rise quickly to match ambient. Only carrying a 2 hour bottle was a bit frustrating.

Every time we'd go to a rest stop I would extensively wash the bottle (to remove any leftover bacteria), but only had cold water from a hose bib to do it.

How about:

1. Insulated bottle with ice cubes from rest stops. Not sure if the insulated bottles would have much benefit over regular? Most insulated bottles use an ice pack that is useless after the first couple hours.

--The ice I would get for my standard bottles would last for roughly 45 minutes.

2. Bring small container of dish soap to wash the bottle while refilling, to destroy any residual 'cultures' leftover in the bottle.

--Would slow down rest stops a bit more, but if we can add another hour of life to the bottle, it would be worth it.

3. Add something to Sustained Energy to increase the bottle life somehow...

Having more than 2 hours per bottle would be really really helpful for the longer rides. Even in cooler temps up here in Seattle, I've noticed the bottles start to turn in 3 hours or less depending on liquid volume.

How long would you go between refills during the back to back Furnace Creek 508s? In the desert did you get a full 3 hours per bottle of Perpetuem? If so, does Perpetuem keep longer than Sustained Energy, or what was your support persons routine to ensure a clean bottle?


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Re: Perpetuem Shelf Life after Mixing

Postby JimP » Fri Oct 01, 2010 7:22 am

I have used Perpetuem in CamelBak Podium Ice Jacket Waterbottles and they stayed cool for over 6 hours in warm conditions (mountains of North Carolina). I load them up with ice, freeze them and in the morning put Perpetuem and water into them. The amount of ice is a little tricky as too much ice means not enough water for mixing and not enough ice means the liquid gets warm too soon. I tend to err on the too much ice side and carry Hammer Gel for fueling on the start of the rides until the ice melts some.

The disadvantage is they only hold 21 ounces so you might need to stop a little more often. This weekend for my 145 mile ride I am thinking of carrying 4 bottles (2 in front, 2 in back), 2 of which are the CamelBak, 2 of which are Polars. The Polars don't stay cold as long so I will use them first. I have not decided yet on the mix - 2 Perpetuem and 2 HEED or 1 Perpetuem and 3 HEED. The beauty of the insulated bottle is you can go longer with cooler drinks.
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Re: Perpetuem Shelf Life after Mixing

Postby knjwes » Fri Oct 01, 2010 7:45 am

Just a few thoughts from my experience in adventure racing. What i typically do for long duration races is to put the mixture in first into a Camelbak Chill insulated bottle, then add a little water, mix it up, then fill to the rim with crushed ice, then remaining space with water. The crushed ice in the insulated bottle seems to last longer than straight ice. Then, a second bottle I will freeze and leave in an insulated bottle. This will take around 2-3 hrs to thaw and will be when i am ready for it. This gives me six hours without stopping. After that, some of your suggestions may take in. I know that, for me, I cannot stand luke warm SE, so I usually will just mix a little in one bottle that I can swig for a short time and then rely on heed or gel after that for energy. Also, I hear that the new Camelbak "Ice" bottles last even longer than the "chill" bottles. I can tell you that these bottles do keep things colder for significantly longer than regular bottles.
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Re: Perpetuem Shelf Life after Mixing

Postby Steelcyclist » Fri Oct 01, 2010 12:03 pm

Crushed lasts longer, huh. Good tip, thank you.

Those are the insulated bottles I was thinking of, but the one I remember has a packet that freezes, is that the new version? I don't know how well that retains the cold in the bottle after it's melted a couple hours in.

Ideally, we all just need a SAG vehicle with a cooler of ice, that can swap bottles every so often. But I'm thinking for the event riders out there that may be looking to stop every 2-4 hours.

Also, long track triathletes looking to train on country roads, with minimal opportunity to refill but sporting 4 bottle holders, 3 for hydration, 1 for 'food' (my challenge).
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