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It is reported that 4 out of 5 westerners consume caffeine on a daily basis, a greater proportion than those consuming fruit. This is largely due to the fact that the drug is present in far more food and drink than we may be aware of.

Caffeine’s prevalence in everyday goods such as tea, coffee, soft drinks and chocolate is one of the reasons why the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) removed it from their banned substance lists. Since caffeine’s removal, it has been the focus of many studies as athletes seek marginal gains in performance.

With recent developments in caffeine chewing gum, it has become easier for athletes to regulate their caffeine intake and tailor it according to their training schedules.

Experts advise 3mg of caffeine per kilogram of bodyweight as the optimal dosage – which roughly equates to three large cups of filter coffee – taken one hour before exercise.

Healthspan’s Kick-Start Gum, vegan-friendly and gelatin free, delivers 100mg of pure caffeine absorbed through the lining of the mouth with 85% absorption in 10-15 minutes and the peak performance window thought to last between 40-60 minutes.

How Does Caffeine Help Us During Exercise?

As you exercise, the body produces adenosine which causes feelings of fatigue. Caffeine intake blocks adenosine receptors in the nerves so that the brain perceives less fatigue allowing athletes to exercise longer while feeling more mentally alert, lending itself to endurance sports such as cycling and running.

The stimulated nerve cells release the hormone epinephrine (adrenaline), which increases heart rate, blood pressure, and blood flow to muscles.

It is by no coincidence therefore that caffeine can be used as an ergogenic (performance enhancing) aid for endurance performance.

“Gum format is the preferred ingestion method of the British Sailing Team as it allows us to have the greatest control over when it gets implemented,” said Paul Mullan, Head of Sport Science at British Sailing and Healthspan Ambasador.

“Healthspan’s Kick-Start Gum is perfect for our athletes. It allows us to get a controlled dose, just when we need it to give our athletes a performance edge. For me, it’s the best tasting and highest quality caffeine gum available.

“The performance window has been shown to last between 40-60mins with the peak effect being dependent on the format of ingestion.”

In order to consume a more precise and well-timed dose of caffeine, elite and competing athletes are opting to use caffeine gum offer more traditional sources.

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