There is nothing more inspiring, empowering and useful then a simple solution to a complex question. Throughout the course of history it has been the simplest solutions to the most complex quandaries that have had the greatest impact on our lives. Einstein changed the face of physics with three little letters, E=MC2. Ben Franklin lit up our world with electricity by flying a kite into a thunder cloud. Alexander Graham Bell gave birth to modern telecommunications with 2 tin cans and a piece of wire. And now there is finally a simple solution to optimal sports nutrition; and it’s called PowerButter!
PowerButter is the first of a brand new breed of high-performance-foods. Offering a combination of high quality protein, essential fatty acids, healthy fiber, antioxidants and just a dash of clean carbs, PowerButter provides athletes of all ages and ambitions with the perfect blend of nutrients to maximize muscular performance, recuperation and growth. And it does all of this in the form of a tasty, all-natural peanut butter.
Sounds crazy doesn’t it? I mean who’s ever heard of peanut butter being a high-performance muscle food? Sure natural peanut butter is a decent source of “good” fats and tastes good on toast. But that’s about it, right?
True enough, but PowerButter isn’t just peanut butter, it’s what peanut butter should be. Let me explain why.
PowerButter vs. Peanut Butter
As state above, a good all-natural peanut butter from your grocery store (containing just peanuts and salt) is a decent food. As an athlete, or someone simply interested in staying healthy and strong, you probably already use peanut butter on a regular basis. And why not? It’s tasty, convenient, low in carbs, provides some protein, and you’ve been told it has the “good” fats your body needs. Makes sense. But is regular natural peanut butter really all it’s cracked up to be?
I’m afraid the answer to that question is — not really. When you strip away all the rhetoric and assumptions surrounding natural peanut butter, and boil it down to its true nutritional essence, you’ll find that it’s really just a dense source of decent calories. That’s it. I say this for two reasons.
First, the “good” fats contained in peanuts are really not so much “good” as they are “not bad”. They are mainly composed of monounsaturated fats. And being such they don’t pose any health risks like saturated (or “bad”) fats do. But because monounsaturated fats are not considered “essential fatty acids” (in other words you don’t have to consume them in your diet, because your body can make them from other fats) they also don’t really provide any specific health or athletic benefits. There is no research connecting the intake of monounsaturated fats with enhancement of any muscular performance or growth parameter. They simply supply calories.
Second, the level and type of protein found in regular natural peanut butter is very modest. Containing only 14% of calories as protein, a 2-ounce serving provides about 14 grams of protein. However, due to an incomplete amino acid profile, your body is only able to use about half of that protein to build muscle. So you really only net about 7 grams of usable protein from a hefty 2-ounce serving – which also contains about 380 calories, with 75% of those calories (25 grams) as fat. Not a great ratio.
But PowerButter has changed all of this. By starting with the best all-natural peanut butter available, then stripping out the existing fat, and adding only natural, whole-food ingredients, the food scientists at PowerButter have created a nutritional powerhouse. PowerButter boasts a huge 32 gram dose of completely muscle-compatible protein and 10 grams of essential fatty acids (EFA) per 2-ounce serving. And the overall fat content has been decreased from 75% in regular peanut butter to 50% in PowerButter. Toss in a solid 6 gram dose of fiber and an incredible taste profile and this truly is what peanut butter should be.
Here is a comparison of the macronutrient content of regular natural peanut butter and PowerButter. (* based on a 2-ounce serving)
Now that it’s clear that the overall nutrient composition of PowerButter is far superior to regular peanut butter, let’s take a closer look at the specifics of the selected added nutrients, and how they can provide incredible support to your athletic and physique enhancement endeavors.
The Perfect Protein
How is it possible to increase the level of muscle building protein in natural peanut butter by over 450% (from 7 grams to a whopping 32 grams per serving) — all while maintaining a perfectly creamy consistency and terrific taste? This was the single toughest question faced by food scientists at PowerButter during the development of their prize product. And because they were determined not to settle for anything but the best, they set rigorous standards for the protein they would accept. The protein had to come from an all-natural source, be of the highest possible biological quality, digest easily and completely, have a neutral taste characteristic, and lend itself to the proper creamy consistency. This is a tough bill to fill. But once again it was the simple solution that solved the problem.
And that solution was pure, pasteurized egg white protein. Egg protein (or egg albumin as the techy crowd calls it) fit the protein bill perfectly. First and foremost it is an extremely high quality protein. As a matter of fact it’s amino acid profile is so perfectly balanced that it has been used as the Gold Standard of protein quality, upon which all other proteins have been rated, for decades. This means that every single gram of egg protein is “complete” and can be utilized by your body to build muscle, create complex protein enzymes and neurotransmitters, or fulfill any of the other thousands of protein related demands of your body. It’s just what your hungry muscles need.
Next, egg protein actually has the ability to transform low-quality peanut protein into a complete protein in its own right. A protein that can feed muscles every bit as effectively as pure egg protein. Let me explain.
As mentioned earlier, only about 50% of the protein found in peanuts is actually able to be used to create muscle. This is because in order to be considered a complete, muscle-matching protein that protein must have a very specific balance of essential amino acids. There are nine essential amino acids. And if any one of those nine are in short supply compared to the structure of human muscle, then that amino acid “limits” the functionality of that protein to build muscle. This is called the limiting amino acid.
In peanuts there are three limiting amino acids. They are methionine, lysine and threonine. They are in short supply compared with what our muscles need in order to grow. However, egg protein has an over abundance of these three amino acids within it’s makeup. That being the case, when mixed with peanut protein (as in PowerButter), it can lend it’s excess of these amino acids to the peanut protein. Thereby “complimenting” peanut protein, filling in the blanks as it were, and making it a 100% viable, muscle-building protein.
For this reason all 32 grams of protein per serving of PowerButter are complete and able to lend themselves directly the feeding and building of muscle.
Essential Fatty Acids (EFA’s)
While quality proteins are the building blocks of muscular structure, EFA’s provide the physiological fuel needed to propel muscles toward optimal performance and growth. These simple fatty acids are the unsung heroes of performance nutrition. With the responsibility of controlling dozens of crucial metabolic functions (including many that related directly to muscle growth and performance) EFA’s truly are an indispensable part of any performance nutrition plan. And PowerButter plays that part perfectly.
There are two types of EFA’s – alpha-Linolenic acid (omega-3) and Linoleic acid (omega-6). They are called essential fatty acids because your body cannot produce them internally. They must be consumed in your diet on a daily basis. And they are essential not only to muscular performance, but the general function, health and well being of your body, including brain and nervous system function, as well as blood pressure control and immune system support. If these two fats were absent from your diet you would literally waste away and die.
But the sad truth is there is a serious imbalance in the EFA intake of the typical American diet. Changes in our food supply since the industrial revolution have jeopardized both the quantity and balance of these nutrients. First of all, our overall intake of EFAs has become quite limited. And the EFAs we do manage to consume provide excessive amounts of omega-6 fatty acids in relation to omega-3 fatty acid content. This is a problem because excessive amounts of omega-6 fats have the potential to increase blood pressure, inflammation, platelet aggregation, and allergic reactions. While omega-3 fats have the much more positive and desirable opposing effects. Not only can omega-3s help suppress and control inflammation in recuperating muscles, they also tend to stimulate anabolic hormone production more effectively. There is clearly a need for a concentrated food source of omega-3 fats in the diet of the modern-day athlete.
And PowerButter is that food source. By removing virtually all of the peanut oil found in regular natural peanut butters, and replacing it with a pure, cold-pressed flaxseed oil, the food scientists at PowerButter have completely changed the fatty acid profile. Whereas regular natural peanut butter contains over 50% of its fat as monounsaturated fat (discussed above), 29% as omega-6 fat, and a sad 0% as omega-3 fats; PowerButter boasts an impressive 37% of fat as omega-3 and only 10% as omega-6 fats. This translates to 7.5 grams of omega-3 fats and 2.25 grams of omega-6 fats per serving.
As an active person your minimum daily requirement for omega-3 fats is 2% of your total caloric intake per day. If you consume 2,000 calories per day, that means you need 40 calories as omega-3 fat, or about 4.5 grams per day. As you can see, just one serving of PowerButter well exceeds that requirement. And recent research suggests that for athletes exceeding the minimum requirement may be a very good thing.
An extensive clinical study, assessing the effects of EFA supplementation on athletic performance and general well being in athletes, was recently carried out by members of the Danish Institute for Optimal Nutrition, in collaboration with the Aarhus State Hospital in Denmark. In the study 47 athletic participants were supplemented with an average of 20 grams of omega-3 fats per day, over a 2 month period. Researchers measured the following parameters, stamina and endurance, strength, recovery time after physical activity, inflammation, and increase in lean mass. After 2 months of supplementation it was found that 75% of the participants experienced significant improvements in one or more of these parameters. The most dramatic improvements were seen in stamina and endurance, and recovery time.
One competitive endurance runner in the study noted that during the study he was able to go from running approximately 90 km a week, to running a total of l47 km a week, without reaching the point of overtraining. Previous attempts to increase his running mileage to more than 90 km per week were unsuccessful because he would overtrain and become sick or injured.
Previous research shows that EFAs can improve various biochemical and physiological reactions in the body. These reactions play key roles in enhancing athletic performance, including an increase in blood flow and oxygenation of tissues, as well as an increase in the ability to absorb and utilize oxygen (VO2 max) . These effects of EFAs on human physiology and biochemistry could explain why so many of the participants in the trial experienced improvement in stamina and endurance, as well as a decrease in recovery time after physical exertion.
The anti-inflammatory effects of EFAs likely played a role in the decrease in recovery time as well. Mild inflammation occurs in various tissues – muscles, joints, connective tissue, etc. – after physical exercise when the immune system becomes engaged in breaking down dead and damaged cells. If this post-exercise inflammatory state becomes too pronounced, healthy cells can also get damaged. Therefore the recovery time increases, because healthy tissue is also being destroyed by the immune system. An over-pronounced post-training inflammatory state can occur due to the following:
A lack of EFAs
An over-production of pro-inflammatory eicosanoids from arachidonic acid (created from omega-6 fat),
Or due to a lack of antioxidants.
Sufficient intake of a blend of EFAs, such as that found in PowerButter, addresses all the above problems. Furthermore, EFAs increase the output of human Growth hormone (hGh) after physical exercise and improve the binding of insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF-1) to its receptors in cell membranes. Human Growth hormone and IGF-1 are also involved in processes during the recovery phase after physical exercise.
It is abundantly clear that no athlete interested in optimizing his or her performance and muscular development should be without a consistent source of quality EFAs. And PowerButter offers the most convenient, tasty, and value-added source available.
The Facts on Flaxseeds
“There is nothing that has the potential to increase the health of a society more than the introduction of flaxseed into the daily diet.” Albert Einstein said that. Clearly he didn’t limit his genius to physics, but dabbled in nutrition as well. He knew that flaxseeds are an incredibly nutritious food. We’re just glad that peanut butter wasn’t a hot item in his day, or he may have beat us to the punch. Because PowerButter is not only loaded with pure flaxseed oil, but contains a hefty dose of the whole seeds as well. And the whole seed itself possesses a variety of health benefits above and beyond that of its omega-3 oil content.
For starters whole flaxseed contains a special group of nutrients in the hull called lignans. These potent phytonutrients were discovered in flaxseed back in the 1950s, but their powerful metabolic effects weren’t realized until well into the 80’s. At that time scientists discovered that lignans interfere with the development of breast, prostate, colon and other cancers. These lignan compounds have shown such extraordinary potential that they have been studied by the National Cancer Institute for their cancer preventative properties. This research has found that lignans not only have anti-cancer properties, but anti-viral , anti-bacterial, and anti-fungal properties as well. They are also powerful anti-oxidants. Most of the lignans tested for their anti-oxidant activity have shown themselves to be 5 times greater in activity than Vitamin E.
All of these health promoting properties are of special interest to hard training individuals, because intense training not only increases the level of free-radicals in hard working muscles, but tends to increase testosterone levels as well, which in turn can lead to greater production of DHT, and increased risk of prostate cancer. The lignans in flaxseed can help to both protect your prostate, as well as support your immune defenses and neutralize damaging free-radicals. It’s good stuff.
And whole flaxseeds are really the only viable dietary source of these potent lignans. Some flaxseed oil products may claim to contain lignans, but because they are only found in the hull of the seed, this really isn’t the case. As a matter of fact, products claiming “High Lignan Flax Seed Oil” tested by the University of North Dakota have been found to contain practically no lignans at all.
The other component of whole flaxseeds that offers a benefit to athletic enthusiasts interested in maintaining a fit physique is an abundance of fiber. About 25% of the whole flaxseed is composed of fiber. About 1/3 of which is soluble, while the other 2/3 is insoluble. PowerButter contains a formidable 6 gram dose of fiber per serving, due in great part to the presence of whole flaxseeds.
The great thing about this is that recent research indicates that consuming 20 to 30 grams of fiber per day can be greatly beneficial to people’s ability to lose fat and maintain a fit figure. Here is a summary of some of those findings:
When consuming a fixed number of calories (like on a structured 1,500 calorie diet say) the addition of fiber to the diet:
Increases post meal satiety
Decreases subsequent hunger
When caloric intake is not controlled, fiber added to the diet of overweight subjects:
Decreased self-selected food and calorie intake by an average of 18%.
Caused an average weight loss of over 5 lb. in a 3.8 month period with no other dietary changes.
In a study originally designed to assess the effects of fiber on blood lipids it was found that healthy, normal weight adults all spontaneously lost body fat without any other dietary alterations. Average fat loss over 11 weeks was 3.5 lb. No muscle mass was lost. And subjects with the initially lowest level of body fat actually gained muscle (1.3 lb.) while they lost fat mass.
Soluble fiber (pectin in this study) decreases the absorption of both sugar and fat from the intestine.
Because soluble and insoluble fibers tend to act a bit differently in the gut – with insoluble fibers soaking up water, creating bulk and a sense of fullness that lasts, while soluble fibers do a bit more of the fat and sugar binding – it appears that consuming a mixture of the two (like that found in PowerButter) is optimal.
PowerButter in a (Pea)Nutshell
PowerButter is the perfect performance food. Can I say that? Yes — yes I can! Because when you boil it all down it’s three extremely valuable sports supplements rolled up into one great tasting food. It’s got more, and better quality, protein per serving than many chalky protein drinks. Each serving also replaces ten (that’s right — 10!) big EFA capsules you would otherwise have to choke down. And you would have to eat two whole apples to get the same dose of healthy fiber as you get from one serving of PowerButter. On top of all this it is an incredible taste treat in its own right.
So pick up a jar of PowerButter today, and you’ll be well on your way to meeting all of your protein, EFA, and fiber needs as you sit down tomorrow morning and munch happily away on your PowerButter covered toast. This isn’t just peanut butter — this is what peanut butter should be!