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Variety is the spice of life, and we are all different. Not only do we all have different fuel requirements depending on our body weight, metabolism, and gender but we also have different fuelling preferences in terms of what suits our gastrointestinal (GI) system as well as preferences in taste, texture and consistency of what we consume. 

Ever since energy gels were first developed back in the 1980’s (yes, they’ve been around a while now!), they have become increasingly popular as the go-to fuelling solution providing a conveniently packaged boost of easily-accessible carbohydrate. Here at Science in Sport, we have developed a wide range of different energy gels with different benefits, but what if energy gels don’t suit you? 

For some people, energy gels are not the best option. This can be down to a variety of reasons such as personal GI response i.e., stomach cramps or an individual’s gag reflex. Something chewier and more palatable might be in order.  

Luckily, if energy gels are not for you, there are now plenty of options out there so you can feel energised from start to finish. Of course, there are general food-first approaches such as bananas, salted potatoes or sweets but they are not always the easiest to eat or carry during training or a race.  

At Science in Sport, we have multiple options you can us on their own or in combination with other products to fuel your personal needs. These come in a variety of formats as described below: 

BARS 

GO Energy Bar Mini 

Our GO Energy bars are high carbohydrate, easily digestible, nutritious snack made from fruits and wholesome ingredients. As they are small, it makes them practical to use during training and/or races. 

Carbohydrate content: 26g per serving  

Performance Nitrate Bar 

The performance nitrate bars provide carbohydrate alongside nitrates from rhubarb juice concentrate and Amaranthus leaf extract, giving an utterly unique superior taste compared to other nitrate products. Nitrate supplementation can aid muscle efficiency by reducing the oxygen cost of exercise, so this bar has added benefits alongside the carbohydrate content!  

Carbohydrate content: 30g per serving 

BAKES  

GO Energy Bake 

Our GO energy bakes have a cake-like texture (as good as it sounds!) with 30g of carbohydrate including 10g of fructose. These unique, soft bakes provide an easy to eat option with the performance benefits of two different forms of carbohydrate.  

Carbohydrate content: 30g per serving 

CHEWS 

Beta Fuel Chews 

The Beta Fuel energy chews are a scientifically superior fuel source giving an optimised ratio of maltodextrin and fructose in a delicious sweet-like format. Think jelly cubes in a bar for the texture, super easy to consume with high carbohydrate content. 

Carbohydrate content: 46g per serving 

POWDERS  

We have a wide range of energy powders that are all designed to be added with water in your bottle.  

GO Energy 

The GO Energy powder is designed to be versatile and can be mixed at various concentrations to suit your needs.  

Carbohydrate content: 47g per serving 

 GO Electrolyte 

The GO Electrolyte powder is a blend of easily digestible carbohydrate with added electrolytes such as sodium to promote optimal hydration. 

Carbohydrate content: 36g per serving 

Turbo +  

Turbo + is menthol flavoured for a cooling effect making it suitable for hot environments. However, it is overall a great energy source and shouldn’t just be used in hot environments. It also contains Electrolytes to help replace those lost via sweat. 

Carbohydrate content: 62g per serving 

Beta Fuel 

The scientifically superior Beta Fuel Powder is an isotonic high carbohydrate powder using an optimised ratio of maltodextrin and fructose for optimal absorption. 

Carbohydrate content: 80g per serving. 

 

Here is a summary table to help compare the different energy products and their additional benefits. 

 

GEL ALTERNATIVE  FORMAT/TEXTURE  CARBOHYDRATE PER SERVING  ADDITIONAL BENEFITS 
GO Energy Bar Mini   Bar  26g   
Performance Nitrate Bar  Bar  30g  Nitrate supplementation  
GO Energy Bake  Cake  30g  Dual carbohydrate source 
Beta Fuel Chews  Jelly/Sweet  46g  Dual carbohydrate source 
GO Energy Powder  Drink Powder  47g   
GO Electrolyte Powder  Drink Powder  36g   Electrolytes to aid hydration 
Turbo+ Powder  Drink Powder  62g  Menthol flavour for cooling effect 

Electrolytes to aid hydration 

Beta Fuel Powder  Drink Powder  80g   Dual carbohydrate source 

 

So, there you have it, a variety of suitable alternatives to energy gels. Each of these products come in a variety of flavours so as well as different formats, there is plenty of choice! So go on and take your pick! Just remember, never have anything new on race day, always practice in training first to see what works best for you and your GI system. 

Written By

Dr Emily Jevons - PhD in Exercise Physiology & Nutrition, Clean Sport Advisor

After completing her PhD, Emily joined the SiS team, and currently provides nutritional advice for endurance athletes. Emily not only understands the science behind SiS’ innovative performance nutrition solutions, but also understands the physiological and psychological demands of sport after competing competitively in swimming and triathlon for a number of years.