Endurance News #124 April/May 2021
BY STEVE BORN
Back in 2009, over 50 issues of Endurance News ago, we introduced a revolutionary new product we named AO Booster (the “AO” standing for Anti Oxidant), featuring all fat-soluble antioxidants. Because of the consistency of the nutrients—which ranged from sticky to down-right oily—it was a real challenge to mix and encapsulate the product, so much so that outages and delays were constant.
This was frustrating for clients and us, so of course, we did a total reboot and massively improved what was already an extremely potent formula, changing from dry powder capsules to liquid softgel caplets. One of the biggest benefits is that one full serving is now a single softgel versus two of the two-serving vegetable capsules. That’s right, AO Booster—though it can be taken more than once daily, if desired—is now classified as a one-a-day supplement.
We’ve improved the formula by incorporating a new trademarked form of the tocopherol/tocotrienol component in the product. EVNol™ is considered the highest-quality source for the richest amounts of soy-free tocopherols and tocopherols, derived from GMO-free palm oil. Marigold-derived lutein, as well as astanxanthin, derived from the microalgae Haematococcus pluvialis, remain in the formula.
Why AO Booster?
In talking with a nutritional scientist friend a number of years ago, he commented that endurance athletes—even those going at a modest aerobic pace—generate more fat-soluble free radicals than water-soluble ones. He also mentioned that a wide range of both water- and fat-soluble free radicals is continually formed in the body as part of normal biological processes. Other factors, such as pesticides, cigarette smoke, pollution, alcohol, stress, and foods that are fried at high temperatures or burnt also contribute to an overload of free radicals. Supplementing with a variety of antioxidants is required to counteract the damaging effects of the numerous types of free radicals.
Lastly, he reviewed the Hammer Nutrition product line and noted that while there are a number of superb water-soluble antioxidants in many of the formulas, there really needed to be more of the fat-soluble antioxidants to accompany the water-soluble ones for more-complete antioxidant coverage. That was the impetus for creating the AO Booster formula, and it’s found a venerable spot in the Hammer Nutrition lineup (hint: It’s in a tie with Essential Mg for my next supplement choice after the Daily Essentials).
Non-workout days: 1 softgel with food
Workouts days: 1 softgel after workout with Recoverite®/Organic Vegan Recoverite® or food
The AO Booster formula
Tocopherol (150 mg)/tocotrienol (50 mg) blend
The vitamin E “family” has eight “members”—four tocopherols and four tocotrienols. Studies suggest that optimal health benefits are obtained via intake of a mixture of tocopherols and tocotrienols versus “regular” vitamin E (d-alpha tocopherol) only. Karin Granstrom Jordan, M.D. writes, “While alpha-tocopherol has long been known as an important antioxidant, research has now shown that the complete vitamin E team is much more effective. The different vitamin E forms have complementary effects as free radical scavengers. Together they can fight a wider spectrum of free radicals than alpha-tocopherol alone.”
In the tocopherol blend, we emphasize the gamma fraction in the formula; there is more of this particular form of vitamin E than the other three combined. Vitamin E expert, Dr. Maret G. Traber, explains, “While both alpha- and gamma-tocopherol are potent antioxidants, gamma-tocopherol has a unique function. Because of its different chemical structure, gamma-tocopherol scavenges reactive nitrogen species, which, like reactive oxygen species, can damage proteins, lipids, and DNA.”
Tocotrienols may be even more potent free radical scavengers than the tocopherols. According to research by Dr. Lester Packer and Dr. Barrie Tan, tocotrienols may have 30-60 times more antioxidant power than alpha tocopherol.
Read more: “The Full E Family in AO Booster”
Lutein (20 mg)
This carotenoid is a potent antioxidant, with a particular affinity for eyes and skin, helping protect them from ultraviolet (UV) damage. In regards to eye health, not only does lutein provide the macula and lens with protection from sunlight’s UV rays, it is suggested to decrease the risk of developing age-related macular degeneration (AMD). Lutein aids in protecting the skin from UV and free radical damage, it helps reduce soreness and redness in the skin, and may even be a powerful ally for helping protect against skin cancer. In addition, studies indicate that lutein and other carotenoids (a class of natural fat-soluble pigments) may have protective benefits to help ward off breast cancer. Lutein is also purported to help to prevent or slow down atherosclerosis, a condition that causes the arteries to clog and often leads to cardiovascular disease.
Astaxanthin (5 mg)
This carotenoid, derived from the microalgae Haematococcus pluvialis, is suggested to be 10 times stronger than beta-carotene and 100 times stronger than vitamin E in regards to its antioxidant capabilities. Japanese research suggests that mice supplemented with astaxanthin appeared to burn fatty acids for fuel more efficiently, were able to exercise longer, and had greatly decreased fat accumulation compared to mice not receiving astaxanthin. Other research has shown that astaxanthin reduces oxidative damage from strenuous exercise in the skeletal and heart muscles of supplemented mice. Research also suggests that astaxanthin may improve human cardiovascular health and provide a powerful assist in protecting against cancer.
Read more: “Astaxanthin’s Amazing Benefits”
In a single softgel capsule, Hammer Nutrition’s AO Booster supplies you with an arsenal of powerful fat-soluble antioxidants to provide even more immune system-boosting power. These specific antioxidants are perfect complements to the multiple water-soluble ones found in Super Antioxidant, Premium Insurance Caps, and more, and also to the couple of fat-soluble antioxidants in Race Caps Supreme and Mito Caps. In addition, with AO Booster you’ll also notice benefits for your eyes and skin, reduced muscle soreness (a nice post-workout benefit!), as well as potentially increased endurance via enhanced fats-for-fuels utilization.
Back in stock now after a bit of hiatus, I sincerely believe that AO Booster is one of the most advanced and important products we’ve ever come out with, and I enthusiastically and unhesitatingly suggest taking it every day all year round.