Infinit Nutrition Canada - Premium Sport-Specific Nutrition

Monday, July 10, 2017

#AskInfinit: Everything you need to know about BCAA's

Branched chain amino acids, better know as BCAA's, are the building blocks of muscle; they make up 35% of muscle mass and their presence helps stimulate muscle protein synthesis. BCAA refers to three main essential amino acids: leucine, isoleucine and valine.

There are 9 essential amino acids. They are identified as essential because the body cannot naturally produce these amino acids, so they must be obtained through nutrition/diet. Complete proteins provide all 9 amino acids. Animal protein and soy protein are considered complete proteins. In this post we will focus on Valine, Iso-leucine and Leucine, as well as Glutamine, the fourth amino acid that makes up Infinit's Amino Blend which goes into most of our products.

Valine is not heavily researched in isolation, but when paired with iso-leucine and leucine, it helps to activate muscle protein synthesis in the body.

Iso-leucine is similar to both valine and leucine, as it helps stimulate muscle protein synthesis in the body - it is stronger than valine, but weaker than leucine at doing so. Furthermore, iso-leucine is able to increase glucose uptake and the usage of glucose during exercise.

Leucine is said to be the most important BCAA. It is the main component responsible for muscle protein synthesis, the process which stimulates muscle growth and development through diet/nutrition and resistance exercise training.

Glutamine is the most abundant amino acid in the body, accounting for more than 60% of the total intramuscular free amino acid pool, according to 1st endurance. Glutamine is a fuel for muscle growth in the body, and is beneficial for performance.

When should I supplement with BCAA's?
There are two main instances when one should supplement with BCAA's: to accommodate muscle protein synthesis when protein intake is low, and to prevent serum decline during exercise. For those athletes with a low protein intake, supplementing with BCAA's can assist in muscle protein synthesis. As mentioned above, Leucine is a key contributor to muscle protein synthesis. BCAA's are important to ingest on a daily basis, but they can be found naturally in foods such as meat and eggs; therefore athletes with a high protein intake of 1g-1.5g per kg of bodyweight do not need to supplement with additional amino acids.

Novice athletes can also benefit from BCAA's. Supplementing with BCAA's prevents a serum decline during exercise. This decline would normally cause an increase in tryptophan into the brain, followed by production of serotonin, resulting in fatigue.

Another interesting finding on BCAA's is their benefits to performance when combined with carbohydrates. It has been found that oral ingestion of BCAA's can have an anti-catabolic affect on skeletal muscle. When combined with carbohydrates, the amino acids stimulate muscle protein synthesis and maintain full body balance better than when supplementing with carbohydrates alone. (Koopman, 2005)

I'm an endurance athlete, should I take BCAA's?
We are often asked by endurance athletes if they should supplement with BCAA's, as generally you hear a lot of body builders or strength based athletes supplementing amino acids. BCAA's, especially valine, iso-leucine and leucine, are beneficial to endurance athletes. During prolonged exercise, the amino acids are taken up by the skeletal muscle rather than the liver in order to contribute to energy production.

But what about glutamine? 1st endurance discusses the benefits of BCAA's and glutamine for endurance based athletes. They state: "There is evidence that during times of stress the body cannot produce enough glutamine to keep up with demand which in turn can reduce performance, immune function and affect mood state. Athletes at risk for inadequate stores of glutamine include those not eating enough calories, carbohydrates or protein or those participating in strenuous endurance events."

Furthermore, they mention that "Glutamine supplementation is most effective during those times of high-volume and/or high intensity training, particularly if you are in danger of OTS (overtraining syndrome). Though glutamine may not offer a direct ergogenic performance enhancing effect, it will offer insurance for the maintenance of skeletal muscle and immune function."

In closing, we recommend you check your protein intake throughout the day. If you're high in protein (1-1.5g per kg of body weight), BCAA supplementation is not necessary. However, if you find you are low on protein, consider adding in a high-quality BCAA product to help meet your body's needs and improve performance.

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Resources
Examine.com - Iso-leucine, leucine, valine, branched chain amino acids


Koopman R, Wagenmakers AJ, Manders RJ, Zorenc AH, Senden JM, Gorselink M, Keizer HA, van Loon LJ. Combined ingestion of protein and free leucine with carbohydrate increases postexercise muscle protein synthesis in vivo in male subjects. Am J Physiol Endocrinol Metab. 2005 Apr;288(4):E645-53. Epub 2004 Nov 23.

Seebohar, Bob. Amino Acids: Their role in endurance training. 1st endurance. July 30, 2009. https://firstendurance.com/amino-acids-their-role-in-endurance-training/

Friday, June 30, 2017

Canada's 150, Infinit's 10.5!

For the last 10 and a half years, we have had the opportunity to fuel some amazing Canadian athletes, from Olympians to weekend warriors, elite's to age groupers. We've worked with athletes in nearly every sport, including runners, cyclists, triathletes, mountain bikers, basketball and volleyball teams, rowers, swimmers, ultra runners... the list goes on.

Throughout our time, we've come to cherish one thing: being Canadian. There is nothing more gratifying than helping fuel the potential of Canadian athletes through high quality nutrition tailored specifically to their needs as an athlete and their sport. Another thing we pride ourselves on? Sourcing nearly all of our raw materials from right here in Canada. Offering a high-quality, local product to athletes is our number one priority.

"While training and racing in North America and Europe the one thing I have learned about Canada is we have got the best trails in the world. The variety of seasonal weather, paired with Infinit to fuel my adventures makes Canada the ideal training ground for 24 hour solo endurance mountain bike racing." - Andrew Bovard, Deadgoat Racing, fuelling on Infinit since 2014

"It brings me so much pride to be able to represent a diverse and beautiful nation. We as Canadians are known world wide for our kindness and beautiful country. It's especially important to be representing a Canadian company such as Infinit, knowing the quality of product is there and the open arms, welcome feeling of the Infinit team is so truly Canadian. I'm proud to be able to represent both Canada and Infinit, eh!" - Melissa Bishop, 2x Olympian, Team Infinit athlete

We've gained valuable partnerships with organizations such as the Canadian Sport Institute that have  helped foster our work with Olympians from a variety of disciplines. With the partnership, we expanded our product line to accommodate the needs of the athletes under CSI.

Infinit CEO, Darcy, recounts his experience over the past 10 years. "Infinit came from humble beginnings. I remember mixing the first development batches in our kitchen in November 2006, with a Kitchen Aid mixer while being watched carefully by my wife, Brenda (afraid we were trashing her kitchen) before our new facility was ready.  For the first 8 years of business, I led Infinit Nutrition Canada while working as a Production Manager/Director in a pharmaceutical company. I made time before work, lunches, after work and weekends to build the brand with my team to a point that I was comfortable enough to walk away from my then career in 2013.  

A really important opportunity came to us in 2007. I remember receiving a call from Susan Boegman from the then Canadian Sport Centre Pacific (has since evolve to Canadian Sport Institute) while out grabbing lunch.  Susan, a lead Sports Nutritionist, and her team were looking for products that were effective and safe from a banned substance perspective for training and recovery.  I wasn't sure how we could create a program that ensured we were free banned substances but knew it was a great opportunity to fuel some of the best athletes in Canada.  Working with their nutritionists, coaches and physiologists we together put together 12 blends that made up the Custom Fuel Program for them.  The program has expanded across Canada and we have fuelled many Olympic medal performances since 2008."

Read Darcy's full Infinit story here



"Being a track and field athlete in Canada motivates me to represent our great country on the international stage every opportunity I can. I take pride in things that are operated or produced, in Canada or locally, in Windsor. Thankfully, Infinit is owned and operated in my hometown and is a Canadian company. Not only am I confident in the products Infinit offer but I am proud of their Canadian background. After using Infinit as an endurance athlete I can confidently say I would recommend their product. Happy 150th Canada!" - Corey Bellemore, middle-distance runner and Beer Mile World Record holder, Team Infinit athlete

So how are Infinit fuelled athletes celebrating Canada's 150th? Racing of course! Best of luck to all of our Infinit fuelled athletes this weekend!

Kevin David - Powderface Race July 1st
Bonnie Skara - Epic Canadian Maple Leaf 10K July 1st
Alison Parker - Canada Day 4km Open Water Swim Race July 1st
Chris Siegel - Canada Dar Road Race 15km July 1st
Kev & Kat Calder-Becker - Hosting the Canada 150 Ultramarathon Relay from Montreal to Ottawa
Shane Kroger (Team Infinit) - Enduro World Series France June 30th
Lissa Bissonnette (Team Infinit) - Canada Cup Ottawa July 1st
Fawn Whiting (Team Infinit) - Great White North triathlon July 2nd

Of course we are so proud to be fuelling Canada's best, to have a part in seeing these top athletes reach their full potential.  Along the way working closely with some of the top scientists in sport we have been able to improve our recovery options, we have become a much more rounded company as a result of the partnership.

I have always been a proud Canadian listening to our anthem being played and seeing our athletes reach the podium.  Knowing we are part of that equation make me even more proud.  So grateful to be Canadian and have the opportunities afforded to us.

Monday, June 19, 2017

Fuelling WAC to the International Children's Games!

Infinit Jetfuel is heading to Lithuania in the luggage of 6 Windsor swimmers! We are proud to partner with the Windsor Aquatic Club Parent Organizing Committee to fuel the 6 swimmers that were selected by the City of Windsor to be ambassadors for our Region at the International Children's Games in Kaunas, Lithuania.

The event will take place July 4th-9th, 2017. Participants will get to experience the opening and closing ceremonies, Multi-Cultural activities, Athlete's Night, and of course, racing! To put it into perspective, think of it as an Olympic Games for kids! The athletes will be fuelling their training and racing leading up to the games with Infinit Jetfuel, a blend of electrolytes and carbohydrates to keep you hydrated and energized while in the water.

"There are Infinit possibilities to the end of the race and that is why WAC uses JetFuel for quick energy to get to the wall the fastest." - Tressa Billson, member of the WAC Parent Organizing Committee

6 athletes, along with their head coach, will make the trip for the once in a lifetime experience. We are wishing them all the best and sending lots of good luck their way.

You can watch a promo video for the team here





Monday, June 5, 2017

Recipes to Promote Gut Health

Gut flora is the name of the millions of bacteria that are housed in the stomach and intestines. These milions of bacteria are composed of thousands of species.  Many aspects of our overall health are influenced by the health of our gut. Of particular importance to athletes are nutrient absorption, weight management and inflammation. Having a stong immune system can keep you from being sick, and help you fight inflammation and recovery better from exercise, injury or illness. Being able to maximize absorption of nutrients from the food we eat ensures we get the vitamins and minerals needed. Our nutrition is one influencer of our gut flora or microbiome. Proper nutrition can have a positive influence and ensure there are numerous species and healthy bacteria in the gut.

Probiotics

Probiotics are “good” bacteria. They help to maintain the balance of good and bad bacteria in the gut. Fermented foods such as kefir, sauerkraut, kimchi, yogurt, kombucha, miso and tempeh are rich in probiotics. If you are looking at taking a probiotic, be aware that there are many strains of probiotics, with each influencing a different part of our health.

Prebiotics

Prebiotics are a type of indigestible fibre that acts of food for probiotics and will help to feed the beneficial bacteria already in your gut. Some examples of foods rich in prebiotics include asparagus, onions, mushrooms, garlic and artichoke.

Steps you can take to keep your gut happy and healthy:
  • Limit use of artificial sweeteners
  • Consume fermented foods (see above for examples)
  • Eat a variety of whole foods
  • Limit intake of highly processed foods and comsume a variety of fruits and vegetables, whole grains, beans and legumes as these contain fibre and promote the growth of healthy bacteria


Kefir is fermented milk, containing 1 billion bacterial cultures per 1 cup. With a consistency between milk and yogurt and a slightly sour taste, many enjoy kefir mixed with something else, such as a smoothie. Try this probiotic rich smoothie to help you refuel and support your gut health:

Mango Kefir Smoothie
Ingredients:
1/2 cup frozen mango
½ banana
1 cup plain Kefir (add more for a thinner consistency)
1 big handful of baby spinach
1 scoop of Infinit Raw

Directions:
Add all ingredients to a blender and blend until smooth. Serve immediately.


Try this refreshing raw asparagus salad as a side dish.

Shaved Asparagus Salad
Ingredients:
12 asparagus spears
¼ cup + 2-3 tbsp of Parmesan cheese
¼ cup olive oil
1.5 tbsp lemon juice
Salt and pepper to taste

Directions:
1. Take 12 asparagus spears and shave them length wise with a vegetable peeler and place in a bowl.
2. Grate 1/4 cup of fresh Parmesan cheese and add to the bowl. Use the vegetable peeler and shave a few pieces of fresh Parmesan onto asparagus.
3. In a separate bowl, make your vinaigrette of 1/4 cup olive oil and 1.5 tbsp of lemon juice. Add to the asparagus and Parmesan and mix. Add salt and pepper to taste.



Andrea Docherty is a Registered Dietitian and Sports Nutritionist in Windsor, Ontario. For more information and recipes, visit her at www.andreadochertyrd.com







Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Infinit is Fuelling Stoke and Stride Multisport!

We are proud to announce we will be fuelling all four Stroke and Stride Multisport Inc races this summer! We have partnered with Stoke and Stride to offer racers high quality nutrition to fuel them through the summer.


Stroke & Stride Multisport is a 4-race series in Southern Ontario consisting of a swim component and a run component. Races will run on the first Wednesday of each month. Race dates are as follows:

Wednesday, June 4th/2017 - Guelph Lake
Wednesday, July 5th/2017 - Guelph Lake
Wednesday, August 2nd/2017 - Gulliver's Lake
Wednesday, September 6th/2017 - Gulliver's Lake

For entry pricing and more race info, you can visit the official site here.
Join the conversation at the official event Facebook page here.

Racers will be fuelling on Infinit Jetfuel - a blend of carbohydrates and electrolytes to keep you hydrated and energized during short, fast races and training sessions.

"As athletes ourselves, we only use the best nutrition products for our training. Because of this we are very excited to partner with Infinit Nutrition as the official on course nutrition sponsor for the Stroke & Stride Race Series." - Stephen Moore, Stroke and Stride Event Organizer

Happy racing! 

Monday, May 29, 2017

Do Carbohydrates Improve Your Exercise Performance?

Our Thoughts:

Carbohydrate intake for performance benefit is all about timing.

To support heavy endurance training loads - carbohydrates are are a great tool.

During your workout, carbs are good to prevent the complete depletion of glycogen and the subsequent reliance on fat only as an energy source.  Note, it's ok to use fat as energy, but it requires us to train and compete at a lower intensity.  

Post workout, it is imperative that you take in a recovery drink post workout. For strength-based athletes, a 2:1 carb to protein ratio is recommended to support muscle protein synthesis. For those training in an endurance based sport, metabolic conditioning, or have depleted glycogen levels, a 4:1 carb to protein ratio is ideal. Carbs, with the presence of protein, are necessary to support muscle protein synthesis. This will aid in the repair and growth of muscle at a quicker rate, as opposed to refuelling on solely a protein based drink. 

Carbs and simple carbs are good if they are used as a tool.  Generally, if we use carbs (simple carbs) during and post-workout, we can optimize our performance and recovery.

There is a great podcast that we've referenced in the past that covers Carbohydrate Availability & Training Adaptation. We encourage you to listen as it provides great information regarding carbohydrates and performance. 

Key notes from the podcast: 

Don't train low carb, don't train high carb, train smart carb. - periodization of carbs is most effective.

Carbohydrates and Weight Loss: Exercise alone and/or diet alone are strategies doomed to failure for weight loss. One of the main problems in today's society in regards to low carbohydrate diets is what actually is considered "low carb". Low carb is 25% of your energy or less coming from carbohydrates. The now popular low carb, high fat diets are promoting reduced intakes at much less than what "low carb" actually means. This raises the question: does a low carbohydrate approach drive the weight loss or is it adequate to have just high protein? Varying the carbohydrate content makes very little difference so long as you're energy restricted and as long as you're exercising. In the linked podcast a study is discussed where participants are put through a 16 week exercise diet; moderate energy restriction (carbohydrates), 3 sessions of aerobic training a week, 3 resistance training. On average, the participants lost 8kg of fat and had a slight increase of lean muscle mass. Ultimately, you can maintain muscle mass and lose fat mass providing the protein content is a little bit above the RDA. 

Of the 61 published studies on carbohydrates and performance, over 82% showed a significant performance benefit from using carbohydrates to fuel performance. 

Training in a low-glycogen state: Anytime you take carbohydrate or energy away from the muscle, you are putting metabolic stress on the muscle, encouraging it to work harder, challenging it to a greater degree. However, this doesn't always translate into a performance benefit. The problem with the train low methodology is that when we train low, which is generally during a morning session, our second session of the day goes down in intensity and power, on average 7-8%.