BY HAMMER NUTRITION
Hammer Gel’s complex carbohydrates—with trace-to-zero-amounts of added sugar—provide you with the quick-acting, long-lasting energy you’re looking for and without the stomach distress issues that so many other energy gels cause.
Here’s a conversation I had with a racer competing in a recent event I attended:
RACER: “I can’t use energy gels. They really upset my stomach.”
STEVE BORN: “Have you tried Hammer Gel?”
RACER: “No, but I’m sure I’ll experience the same thing.”
STEVE BORN: “Look, here’s a full flask of Hammer Gel. There’s two hours’ worth of fuel in the flask. Give it a test during two of your upcoming laps and let me know how you felt.”
After the race was over, this particular competitor gave me a big hug, thanking me for providing an energy gel that didn’t upset her stomach and gave her “the best energy I’ve had on a mountain bike in a long time.” We hear this sentiment from athletes frequently at events, in-person, via email, and over the phone.
The key to Hammer Gel’s effectiveness and ease of digestion is avoiding, as much as possible, the inclusion of added simple sugar.
As you can see, Hammer Gel contains 0 grams of added sugars. The 2 grams of sugar that are part of the 22 grams of Total Carbohydrate occur naturally as part of the complex carbohydrates. The competition’s energy gel contains 8 grams of sugar, all of which are added to the product.
The “added sugars” section in the Nutrition Facts panel is an important distinction that needs to be clarified because it has a profound impact on digestion.
In Hammer Gel, there are 2 grams of sugar (technically defined as a 1- or 2-chain saccharide molecule). The key is that these 2 grams of sugar are “part of the whole” in the entire makeup of the maltodextrin (complex carb). As part of the whole matrix of maltodextrin, there will always be a small amount of one- or two-chain sugars (monosaccharides, disaccharides). However, because they naturally occur as part of the entire complex carbohydrate structure, and are not added separately, the body is able to use maltodextrin more efficiently as a fuel source.
Other gels simply add various types of sugar to their product—in the example used here, it’s a combination of maltodextrin and a sizeable amount of added fructose—and that’s where the stomach issues can really come into play.
When simple sugars like fructose—especially high amounts—are added to a complex carbohydrate product, these two carbohydrate sources digest in different solution concentrations. Simple sugar matches body fluid chemistry (osmolality) and can only be digested efficiently when it is mixed in calorie-weak solutions of 6-8%. Conversely, maltodextrin matches body fluid osmolality parameters in more calorie-dense, 15-18% solutions. The bottom line is that when you combine sizeable amounts of simple sugars with complex carbohydrates, you critically compromise efficient digestion of either source.
That’s why, wherever possible, Hammer Gel doesn’t contain ANY added sugars. Most of our flavors contain zero added sugars, and those that do—primarily the nut-containing flavors—contain only about a gram or two of tapioca syrup to help balance the pH of the product.
Since 1995, Hammer Gel has set the pace for providing athletes with quality carbohydrate energy in a convenient, concentrated form. In today's flooded market of sugar-loaded energy products, Hammer Gel remains uniquely formulated to ensure peak athletic performance—every time!