1.What Is It?
Velositol® is an amylopectin chromium complex produced by supplement manufacturer Nutrition21. Velositol® as an ingredient is made up of 2 main components; Amylopectin & a Chromium complex.
Amylopectin is a highly branched polymer and water-insoluble polysaccharide that is derived from glucose in plants. Amylopectin was first introduced into the sports supplement industry through Waxy Maize, a carbohydrate source that was a very popular carbohydrate source.
The Chromium complex in Velositol® is made up of 2 different variations of Chromium; the lesser known Chromium Histidinate and the more popular Chromium Picolinate. Chromium, regardless of the form, is a mineral that can be referred to as an essential trace mineral as it is required in small doses for human health.
2.What Does It Do?
Velositol® is designed to boost the power of protein; to quote some of the marketing material. To put it more scientifically, Velositol® increases Muscle Protein Synthesis (MPS) in the body and increased MPS is vital for increased muscle growth and repair.
Muscle Building 101:
Proteins are made up of amino acids, the building blocks of tissue being formed within the body. Protein Synthesis (PS) is process of the body building new proteins and Muscle Protein Synthesis (MPS) is the process of building muscle protein specifically. MPS is increased through all forms of exercise, more so in some such as resistance training & weight lifting. The body also has a process known as Muscle Protein Breakdown, which although it sounds like the worst thing imaginable, it is a vital process in the human body and does result in us becoming big and strong. As long as Muscle Protein Synthesis is happening at a higher rate than Muscle Protein Breakdown, the body will increase in muscle mass and size.
Back to Velositol® and how it increases MPS. Velositol® works with protein consumed through diet to result in greater increases in MPS. Consuming protein, whether it be through protein powders, animal meats or plant sources, will always result in an increase in Muscle Protein Synthesis. Velositol® enhances the MPS response the body gets from consumption of protein.
Velositol® achieves a unique result in the body. The combination of the Amylopectin and the Chromium provides enough of a response to increase insulin levels but also leave blood sugar levels unchanged. This is almost the holy grail of results as the increased insulin will help drive nutrients, ideally the amino acids from the protein consumed, into muscle cells while the stable blood sugar levels will ensure excess energy isnt going to be stored as adipose tissue. The more amino acids that are driven into the muscle cells should result in great levels of Muscle Protein Synthesis (MPS).
The graph below shows the results from the initial human study looking at the effects of 6g of whey protein consumed both alone and with 2g of Velositol®. You can see the MPS was doubled with the Velositol® and while the insulin was increased there was no change in blood sugar levels compared to whey protein alone.
The graph below shows the results of a study that was looking at the MPS effects of whey protein at different dosages both consumed alone and then with 2g of Velositol®. Key points from the study, the 6g whey + Velositol® resulted in the same effect as 20g of whey protein alone. Also, the 20g of whey + Velositol® resulted in the a greater effect on MPS than both 30g and 40g of whey consumed.
Velositol® is not only useful when paired with whey protein. Studies have been done pairing Velositol® with both free form aminos and also plant based protein powders. In all scenarios there was a significant increase in MPS from the combination of the amino/ protein source and Velositol® as you can see from the graph below.
3.How Much Do I Need To Take?
Velositol® has been studied and tested in a number of different tests looking at various amounts of protein being consumed. Majority of these studies have used a 2g dose of Velositol®, and from this we can say the recommended daily dose of Velositol® is 2 grams per day.
4.When Do I Take It?
Velositol® needs to be consumed with protein; whether it be in a post workout shake, intra-workout BCAA or a protein shake during the day. The key point to remember about when supplementing with Velositol® is that it needs to be paired with a protein source. Majority of products containing Velositol® are protein powders with the intention to be consumed post workout or throughout the day. The other supplements containing Velositol® are either BCAA supplements which can be taken alone as the BCAA content will allow for similar results to be paired with whole protein.
5.How Long Does It Take To Work?
As shown in the graphs above, the effects of Velositol® are in full effect within hours of consumption. More importantly, results are shown from a single one off dose of Velositol® paired with protein. While consistent use will yield the best results; Velositol® will still be beneficial if taken inconsistently due to training or lifestyle factors. Peak insulin spiking results were studied to occur at approximately 30 minutes post consumption.
6.What Are The Top Products?
The top products utilising Velositol® are: