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What Is Glycerol!

Glycerol. What is it? Does anyone have a clue why that suddenly a protein bar has 20grams of carbohydrates instead of two? Read on to see if the question is answered below.

By: Jeremy Keough

What is Glycerol?

Glycerol is a colorless, odorless, sweet tasting, syrupy liquid. It is 60% as sweet as sucrose and has a caloric value of 4.32 per gram. Glycerol is technically a sugar alcohol.

What is it? Does anyone have a clue why that suddenly a protein bar has 20 grams of carbohydrates instead of two? What about why there is a sudden "bite" feeling in the back of your throat after eating one? Lots of people don't know, and should they? Yes.

So what exactly is it? Is it a carbohydrate? Yes and no. A carbohydrate is based on simple sugars (glucose and sucrose) they are made of a simple formula (CH2O). They are polymeric compounds made up of the simple sugars and can be hydrolyzed to yield simple sugars. The disaccharides are sometimes grouped with the simpler polysaccharides (usually those made up of three or four simple sugar units) to form a class of carbohydrates called the oligosaccharides.

A carbohydrate will break down and give you a little bit of energy and used in the production of lipids (fatty acids) along with the fatty acids combined with glycerol it will form triglyceride. All carbohydrate consists of a large class of cellulose, starches, and of course sugars.

Carbohydrates are organic compounds that consist of carbon, hydrogen and oxygen. They vary from simple sugars containing from three to seven carbon atoms to very complex polymers. Only the hexoses (sugars with six carbon atoms) and pentoses (sugars with five carbon atoms) and their polymers play important roles in nutrition.

Plants manufacture and store carbohydrates as their chief source of energy. The glucose synthesized in the leaves of plants is used as the basis for more complex forms of carbohydrates. Classification of carbohydrates relates to their structural core of simple sugars, saccharides. Principal monosaccharides that occur in food are glucose and fructose. The three common disaccharides are sucrose, maltose and lactose. Polysaccharides of interest in nutrition include starch, dextrin, glycogen and cellulose.

The FDA (food and drug administration) had no choice but to list it as a carbohydrate only because there was nothing else to list it under. Now we all know why a protein bar had two grams of carbs per bar than suddenly went up to twenty-something.

A high protein bar will have about 18-25 grams of glycerol in it, but will be listed on the label now. Too much can cause an upset stomach or diarrhea. Studies shown that devouring one-gram per kilo of body weight would be an accurate dosage.

I recommend not exceeding 100 grams per day. Now that you have read this I can tell you why it should not be counted as a carbohydrate. Glycerol is chemically an alcohol; it is obtained from oils and fats, and used to retain moisture from the air. Do carbohydrates do that? I think not, not even close.

I understand if you still can't comprehend what it is from my article. It is hard for me to since a lot of people didn't know what it was, including me. So I had to do a lot of research. To make it easier I thought I might as well throw in a question and answer segment of this page.

Exactly what does glycerol do to your body?

When administered orally, glycerol has a hydrating/dehydrating effect. This is based on the fact that glycerol has an ability to hold onto water, glycerol can actually absorb so much moisture that mold growths can develop unless an antiseptic is added along with the softening agent! Glycerol's water binding ability helps keep bars soft and also may be of benefit to endurance athletes and bodybuilders alike.

Endurance athletes can utilize glycerol in conjunction with extra water prior to an event in order to support hydration and therefore enhance performance. The recommended dosage for accomplishing "super-hydration" range varies and each individual should experiment sufficiently prior to use during competition. For reference, start with approximately 1-gram glycerol per kilogram body weight along with an additional 1.5L - 2.0L of water, consumed 1-4 hours prior to the event.

Interestingly bodybuilders might consider taking glycerol prior to their stage appearance in lower dosages without consuming the additional water to "dry out". Leaving the water out of the equation may cause a shift of existing body water temporarily out of the tissues and into the blood.

While this ought to maybe work to obtain the shrink-wrapped look, you to definitely test it out prior to the day of the show to see how you react? Glycerol supplementation will not help those who have failed to diet properly and are covered by a small layer of blubber.

What does glycerol claim to do precisely?

There is only five things I that I could find that it is claimed to do. To easy answer this question, it claims it increases blood volume, enhances temperature regulation and improves exercise performance in the heat. Also its claimed glycerol is a sweet liquid that acts like a sponge in your body. When consumed with water or a sports drink, glycerol causes greater fluid retention than drinking water alone. Hyper hydration before exercise can reduce, delay or eliminate the negative effects of dehydration. I apologize for not giving a more descriptive answer but this is all I have at the current time.

What do you think about this whole "protein bar glycerol controversy" going on?

In my opinion, I have no problem with using glycerol as a sweetener, but I do have a problem with having to explain to my readers that the bars they are eating are mislabeled…intentionally to get you to think there are fewer carbohydrates in it than there really is. It is deceptive and dishonest and it gives the food/supplement industry a bad name. I think all of you bodybuilders will agree on this statement I offer you.

References:

http://www.ifpa-fitness.com/Fitness-Glossary/fitness_glossary_c.htm
http://www.thinkmuscle.com/articles/haycock/low-carb-bars-and-glycerol.htm
http://www.naturalmuscle.net/nm0899/bars.htm

Thanks,

What Is Glycerol!
Bodybuilder01002@aol.com

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