Is G FUEL bad for you?
G FUEL® (https://gfuel.com) is among the most popular products boasting increased energy and focus for gamers. With an already impressive list of high profile gamers and organizations as affiliates, G FUEL is certainly doing a great job living up to their slogan as “The Official Energy Drink of Esports®”
But, what about the product? Is G FUEL bad for you? Their supplement formula is designed to provide energy without using chemicals, additives, or sugars. Directly from their website:
Our original goal was to create a 100% clean, natural, and healthy alternative to sugar-loaded Energy Drinks.gfuel.com FAQ
But, do they follow through on their original goal? Well, we decided to review the supplement facts and give G FUEL a rating.
Supplement facts explained
Calories are units of energy for your body, provided by macronutrients (carbohydrates, protein, and fat). A Calorie excess will cause you to gain weight, and a Calorie deficit will cause you to lose weight. With just 25 Calories, consuming G FUEL will not drastically alter any daily consumption goals you may have.
Total fat: 0
Fat is a macronutrient with 9 Calories per 1 gram. Calories from fat are the preferred energy system for your body in a resting state (lack of physical activity) and during steady-state aerobic activity.
Fat is not a necessary ingredient in an energy or performance drink as the beneficial effect of dietary fats for focus are long-term rather than fast-acting.
Carbohydrates: 5 g
Carbohydrates are a macronutrient with 4 Calories per 1 gram. Calories from carbohydrates are the preferred energy system for working muscles.
Carbohydrates are also not necessary in an energy or performance drink since they not associated with improved focus. Poor quality carbohydrates may actually cause a rebound lack of focus as described below.
Sugars: 0 g
The lack of sugar means it would be less likely to have an blood sugar spike following the ingestion this supplement. However, blood glucose levels may still rise due to the sweet flavor.
Elevated blood glucose would be less likely for healthy individuals, but this can still trigger insulin release and subsequent cravings for sugary food/drinks. This occurs due to sucralose—a sugar substitute (discussed next).
With increased blood glucose through ingestion comes increased insulin, the hormone responsible for storing energy. The activity of insulin brings your blood sugar back down, and if your blood sugar becomes even slightly lower-than normal, you may experience symptoms.
Symptoms of hypoglycemia (lower-than normal blood sugar) may include fatigue, weakness, craving sugary foods/drinks, mild dizziness, tunnel vision, and anxiety.
Following high carbohydrate or high sugar meals, it is common to experience fatigue and lack of focus (among other symptoms) when your blood sugar comes back down.
Zero sugar and low carbohydrate means you are less likely to experience this reactive hypoglycemia or “sugar crash.”
Sucralose is a sugar substitute and a common ingredient in diet soft drinks and other beverages for sweetness.
As previously mentioned, sucralose is not sugar, so it is less likely to cause a rise in blood glucose levels. However, blood glucose may become elevated due to the sweet taste.
In otherwise healthy individuals, this should not be an issue. For people with diabetes (type-I) or insulin resistance (type-II diabetes), this blood glucose response may cause problems.
If you have been diagnosed with type-I diabetes, metabolic syndrome (type-II diabetes), or have concerns about sucralose, discuss with your doctor before supplementing with G FUEL.
Vitamin C (Ascorbic Acid): 250 mg
Vitamin C is involved in many processes. Most commonly, vitamin C helps fight bacterial infections and helps detoxify your body. Additionally, it is important for the production of collagen in fibrous tissue, teeth, bones, connective tissue, skin, and capillaries.
Since it is water soluble, vitamin C can be taken in high doses without harm. Note that significant ingestion (thousands of milligrams) will eventually cause flushing of your bowels, known as an osmotic laxative effect.
Vitamin E (as D-Alpha Tocopheryl Acetate): 10 mg
Vitamin E is an antioxidant, which means it helps protect cells from free radicals and supports immune function. Vitamin E is also beneficial for the cardiovascular system. Since it is fat soluble, it is not recommended to take in significantly high doses.
Niacin: 15 mg
Niacin, also known as vitamin B3, is a micronutrient; the most commonly discussed uses for niacin are for reducing heart disease. Although, the evidence on Niacin’s affect on heart disease is inconsistent, and many experts are opposed to the use of niacin for altering your lipid profile.
Niacin is also used in the brain for energy and focus, and this is likely the reason for its use in G FUEL.
Vitamin B6 (as Pyridoxine HCl): 10 mg
Vitamin B6 is important for the production of neurotransmitters in the brain. These neurotransmitters (serotonin, dopamine, and gamma-aminobutyric acid [GABA]) are involved in regulating emotions and maintaining cognitive function.
Vitamin B12 (as Methylcobalamin): 425 mcg
Vitamin B12 is involved in many processes of the nervous system. It is involved in nerve cell support, it reduces neurotoxicity, decreases nerve pain, and is generally neuroprotective.
Most importantly for gaming, vitamin B12 improves memory, concentration, and motor control. The methylated form of vitamin B12 is the active form, and it is the perfect micronutrient for an all-natural energy supplement.
Choline (as Choline Bitartrate): 80 mg
The most important function of choline is in the formation of acetylcholine, a neurotransmitter involved in muscle contraction. Insufficient acetylcholine results in muscle weakness.
Sodium (as Sodium Chloride): 79 mg
Sodium is an electrolyte mineral, and sodium chloride is simply table salt. Electrolytes are minerals that are necessary for nerve impulse (or electrical activity). The other electrolyte minerals are potassium, calcium, and magnesium.
The amount of sodium in this product very low; therefore, it is unlikely that this amount of sodium will have a noticeable effect on any bodily functions. It is more likely that this ingredient was added for improved taste.
Energy complex (1.85 g)
The energy complex includes multiple ingredients: Taurine, L-Citrulline Malate, Caffeine (150 mg), Glucoronolactone, N-Acetyl-L-Carnitine HCl, and Velvet Bean (Mucuna pruriens) Seed Extract. A similar combination of these and other ingredients is common among many energy supplements.
Read about each of these ingredients below.
Other than caffeine, the G FUEL supplement facts label does not specify the amount of each ingredient but rather the cumulative total at 1.85 g.
Taurine is an amino acid (nitrogen-containing protein molecule) that is important for functions in the brain, eyes, heart and skeletal muscles.
For gamers, important functions include regulating electrolyte balance, particularly calcium, which is important for reducing fatigue with repeated muscle contraction.
Citrulline is another amino acid. Citrulline malate has been shown to increase energy and recovery by increasing blood flow (and therefore, oxygen) to muscles. Additionally, it plays a necessary part in the urea cycle, which is the process of detoxing nitrogen from your blood.
Caffeine (150 mg)
Caffeine is a well known neurological stimulant, most notably in coffee, tea, and soft drinks. Caffeine increases nerve firing and has a positive effect on reaction time, wakefulness, concentration, and motor coordination. This amount of caffeine is similar to that of a 10 ounce cup of coffee.
Glucuronolactone is added to many energy drinks as a detox agent. The role of this substance, as it naturally occurs in the human body, is to aid in detoxification pathways. Supplementing may assist in these detoxification processes.
L-Carnatine is a nutrient in your body formed by amino acids lysine and methionine with the assistance of vitamin C. It is involved in energy production by mobilizing fatty acids.
In its N-Acetyl form, L-Carnatine also has a positive effect on brain function.
Velvet Bean (Mucuna pruriens) Seed Extract
Mucuna pruriens is a plant native to India, the Caribbean, and tropical regions of Africa. There are many health benefits, but the most notable are the positive effects on the nervous system. Velvet bean, as it is commonly named, aids in the prevention of Parkinson’s disease, may decrease stress, and may improve mood.
There are anti-diabetic, anti-inflammatory, and anti-oxidant properties of Mucuna pruriens, as well.
Note: Mucuna pruriens is an L-Dopa herb. If you are taking an SSRI, MAOI, or other medication for mental/emotional health, check with your doctor beforehand to make sure G FUEL is safe for you.
How much lead is in G FUEL?
Due to its natural ingredients, there is a trace amount of lead in G FUEL. Fortunately for consumers, this amount is ~1,000x lower than the amount of lead that is described to cause no observable harm.
In other words, you could theoretically ingest 1,000x the suggested serving size*, and the ingested lead from G FUEL would still be below the level of lead that is considered to cause no observable harm.
*HOWEVER, DO NOT DO THIS! Follow the instructions for suggested serving size, and always consult your doctor before taking a supplement such as G FUEL.
For peace of mind, the lead in G FUEL occurs due to absorption of lead from the soil when cultivating natural ingredients. This value is approximately .5 micrograms (.005mg). The same trace amount of lead can be found in other products that have natural ingredients.
California’s Proposition 65 requires labeling for lead at or above the level of .5 micrograms (.005 mg). Therefore, there is a warning on the G FUEL label to comply with Proposition 65.
If you have concerns about the safety of the amount of lead in G FUEL, we recommend you speak with your doctor.
Our review: Is G FUEL bad for you?
Note: this review was for the G FUEL energy formula (mix powder) and not the ready-to-drink formula (cans), which may vary.
The ingredients in G FUEL are not unique to their supplement. Vitamins such as C, E, and B-complex along with Taurine, L-Citrulline, Caffeine, Glucoronolactone, and L-Carnitine are a common “energy blend” for many other energy supplements.
However, some of these ingredients come in different forms. For example, methylated-B12 is the best choice for absorption and use for energy. G FUEL certainly did their research because they have chosen all the correct forms of the ingredients in their product.
Furthermore, their amounts per serving are recognized safe and effective for normal consumption.
Our review of the supplement facts is positive. Compared to other energy supplements targeted for gamers, G FUEL is an excellent choice (please read the disclaimer below)!
Our rating: A (excellent!)
From our review of the supplement facts at Esports Healthcare, G FUEL Energy Formula gets an A for overall quality!
Individual experience with the product may vary. This review is specific to supplement quality and not its effect on energy, focus, nor the taste of any flavor offered.
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This information is not intended to replace the advice of your doctor. Prior to taking this or any other supplement, please consult your doctor.
Esports Healthcare disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information, as it does not establish, nor does it imply, doctor-patient relationship.
This is a review of the supplement facts and not a recommendation to consume this product. These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This review is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.