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At Science Fitness, we're proud that our flagship product, GlycoSource, has recovery and endurance benefits that are:

  • proven to work on real athletes in a clinical atmosphere at a world-renowned sports science University
  • scientifically peer-reviewed by biochemists and sports nutritionists
  • published in the British Journal of Nutrition

In fact, so proud we are that we've gone so far as to outline the clinical trials below for the curious and scientifically minded.

If you're curious but want your facts fast and sharp, head over to our MEDIA page, where you can find everything you need to know in handy video form.


The clinical trial program was designed to test the benefits of the GlycoSource formulation. The team of expert sports scientists at the world renowned Carnegie Faculty at Leeds Beckett University investigated the effects of a specific Carbohydrate (CHO) blend of Maltodextrin (MD) and Galactose (GAL), with and without protein (PRO) and supplementary amino acids (AA) on recovery from endurance exercise and subsequent fuel utilisation during endurance performance.

The team knew that liver and muscle glycogen were essential sources during prolonged moderate to high intensity exercise.  They also knew that the value of glycogen reserves in liver and muscle is related to endurance performance, but the consumption of protein and amino acids have other potential benefits, such as post exercise muscle protein synthesis, positively affecting gains in muscle strength. Therefore it stood to reason that the optimisation of short term replenishment of both liver and muscle glycogen stores through a nutritional supplement was going to be potentially important for performance.

The Trials

The clinical trial involved three separate sets of trials with a total of 24 participants. Each trial comprised multiple conditions to which all the participants were exposed. The participants were given 3 different types of formula in water to consume and ingest after exhausting exercise.

The results from taking the varying formulas in Trial 1 (T1) and Trial 2 (T2) were used to formulate the optimum energy recovery formulation comparisons for Trial 3 (T3) in which the MRS scans were conducted to measure the glycogen production across the conditions.

Trials T1 and T2 were also vital to understanding the maximum rate of oxygen consumption for each participant. This measurement is known as the athletes VO2max and trial T3 worked to very specific VO2max parameters for each athlete.

In trial T3, participants cycled for 45 minutes at 70% VO2max, before completing six 1 minute sprints at 120% VO2max separated by a 2 minute recovery at 50% VO2max. Subsequently, participants cycled for another 45 minutes at 70% VO2max.

The trial conditions ingested by the athletes were as follows:

Details, Note: n = no of participants, 13C refers to isotope labelled carbon.

T1 - Performance, Plasma Variables, n=9, three conditions

i) CHO (MD) ii) CHO (MD) + P/AA iii) CHO (MD +Gal) +P/AA

T2 - Performance, Plasma Variables, Fuel Utilisation (13C isotopes), n=8, three conditions

i) CHO (MD +Gal) ii) CHO (MD + Gal) +P/AA iii) 0 Energy Placebo

T3 - MRI glycogen, n=7, two conditions

i) CHO(MD + Gal) + P/AA ii) CHO (MD+Gal)

The Analysis

After Trial 3, participants undertook a 4 hour recovery programme. Immediately after the exercise, they ingested quantities of either the MD & GAL beverage, or the MD & GAL & PRO + AA beverage, presented using a randomised double blind study design, where both the tester and the subject did not know the conditions the subject will be ingesting. They then consumed the beverage again every 30 minutes after, consuming a total of 2.7 litres in the 4 hour period.

Blood samples were taken throughout the recovery period, and measurements of Glycogen were taken in the muscle and the liver both immediately after the exercise and at the end of the 4hr recovery period using 13C magnetic resonance spectroscopy, a whole body MRI scan.  Due to the complexity of the trials, potential risk to the participant and expense of measuring glycogen in both muscle, and, especially, the liver, this is the first study ever to evaluate, using 13C magnetic resonance spectroscopy (MRS), the effects of MD and GAL, with and without PRO and AA after glycogen-depleting endurance exercise.

The Results

The trial results successfully displayed:

  • a huge increase in the glycogen levels in both the liver and the muscle
  • optimised athlete recovery time by 30%
  • the insulin response doubled after the GlycoSource formulation was ingested
  • Despite the 44% lower carbohydrate content in the GlycoSource formulation, there was no significant difference in the resulting Glycogen measured
  • the synergistic boost provided by the addition of protein and amino acids compensated for the lower carbohydrate

Therefore although the MD-GAL-PRO+AA formulation contained 44% less carbohydrate than the alternative MD+ GAL formulation, the synergistic boost to glycogen recovery provided by MD-GAL-PRO+AA achieved equal levels of glycogen repletion.

This suggested that the increased insulin response compensated for the lower carbohydrate content in the MD-GAL-PRO+AA. For the endurance athlete this is a game changing discovery. Most formulations on the market rely on carbohydrates to provide the positive increases in muscle glycogen synthesis, yet it has been proven that there is a limit to the amount of assistance carbohydrate can provide, just ingesting more carbohydrate will not work.

 Science Fitness GlycoSource is the only commercially available recovery whose formulation is clinically proven to aid glycogen synthesis in both the muscles and the liver.

GlycoSource - Proven Recovery Nutrition

The upshot is, GlycoSource delivers extraordinary results using a reduced carbohydrate load to do it.  And that means that you, the athlete, can benefit from amazing endurance and recovery nutrition that won't bloat you. Thanks to the formulation scientists at Leeds Beckett University, Science Fitness not only has a product that is proven to work, but works with and for the athletes behind the science. 

These amazing discoveries in recovery nutrition have been captured in GlycoSource, a revolution in endurance supplementation.

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