Native to the Brazilian Amazon rainforest, the Guarana fruit is gaining increasing popularity thanks to its invigorating, stimulating and anti-aging properties. The part of the fruit that is used to make supplements is the seed, which is rich in caffeine, tannins, theophylline and theobromine. Guarana seed has 4 times more caffeine than coffee.
Guarana can be consumed in the form of soft drinks, powdered extracts, syrups or capsules. It is an ingredient widely used in the preparation of energy drinks, usually combined with ginseng and more caffeine. Guarana is recommended to improve memory, treat diarrhea and prevent the formation of blood clots, among other benefits.
- 1 Weekly newsletter with the best personal finance tips
- 2 Key Facts
- 3 The best Guarana: Our Picks
- 4 Buyer's Guide: Everything You Should Know About Guarana
- 4.1 What are the active ingredients of guarana?
- 4.2 What are the benefits of guarana for health?
- 4.3 What types of guarana supplements exist?
- 4.4 Who can benefit from the consumption of guarana?
- 4.5 Is guarana recommended for athletes?
- 4.6 Are energy drinks with guarana healthy?
- 4.7 What differences exist between guarana and coffee?
- 4.8 Is guarana recommended for weight loss?
- 4.9 How should guarana be taken?
- 4.10 What adverse effects can the consumption of guarana have?
- 4.11 What contraindications does guarana have?
- 5 Buyer's Guide
- 6 Summary
- Guarana is a fruit originally from Brazil, whose seeds contain components that can have a positive effect on various health spheres. Caffeine, tannins, theophylline and theobromine are responsible for the properties of guarana.
- Guarana increases physical energy, stimulates memory and learning, and improves blood circulation. It also has antioxidant, astringent/anti-diarrheal, and diuretic properties.
- This seed is used to make powdered extracts, drinks and capsules. To acquire the best guarana supplement, it is important to consider certain purchase criteria, such as its concentration of caffeine, the method of consumption and other ingredients added to the product.
The best Guarana: Our Picks
There are many myths about the effects of guarana on the body and this is reflected in the labels of some dietary supplements. If you want to buy a quality product and not become a victim of false advertising in relation to the benefits of guarana for your health, you can opt for one of our favorite supplements:
Buyer's Guide: Everything You Should Know About Guarana
What are the active ingredients of guarana?
What are the benefits of guarana for health?
- Increasing vitality and energy on a physical level.
- Encouraging an adequate response when the body is under stressful situations (physical or mental).
- Reducing the risk of formation of a blood clot that can clog blood vessels and produce a cardiac event or a stroke (ischemia or infarction). This is due to the role of guarana as a platelet anticoagulant.
- Improving memory and intellectual performance.
- Acting as an antioxidant and neutralizing free radicals that produce oxidative damage at the cellular level and which are associated with an increased risk of cardiovascular disease, cancer and neurodegenerative diseases (Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, dementia).
- Delaying aging, also due to to its antioxidant activity.
- Treating diarrhea. This is due to guarana's tannins, which have astringent properties and are indicated in cases of diarrhea.
- Providing a diuretic effect.
- Improving blood circulation and preventing the accumulation of "bad" cholesterol (LDL) in the arteries.
- Functioning as hepato-protective agent against various toxins.
- Raising the basal metabolism and producing a greater daily energy expenditure.
What types of guarana supplements exist?
- Pills/Capsules: Contain guarana extract, wrapped in a thin cover that creates the capsule or tablet form. The wrapping material may be animal gelatin or modified cellulose (vegetable). Its flavor is neutral. They may also contain other ingredients, such as ginseng, bee pollen, Vitamin E or Calcium.
- Powder: The seed is separated from the pulp of the fruit and then it is cleaned, dried and crushed until a fine powder of great purity is obtained. The taste is slightly bitter, earthy and woody. It should be mixed with milk, fruit juice, a smoothie or yogurt to make it more palatable.
Capsules and tablets have varying amounts of caffeine (between 4% and 20%). Its concentration may be equal, lower or higher than that of pure guarana powder. Sometimes, ginseng or maca products are added to the guarana tablets to enhance their energizing effect and reduce the caffeine content per serving.
|Characteristics||Guarana Capsules/Tablets||Pure Guarana Powder|
|flavor||Mild, nearly neutral.||Somewhat bitter, woody and earthy.|
|Daily recommended dose||1 or 2 units (according t oconcentration).||1 level teaspoon (equal to 2-3 grams).|
|Price (per dose)||Lower Cost.||Higher Cost.|
|Amount of Caffeine per Dose||4-20 %.||6-8 %.|
|Form||Together with breakfast or lunch, accompanied by a sip of water.||In the morning, dissolved in water, milk, yogurt, fruit juice, or shakes.|
|Is it Ok for vegans?||It depends on the material of which the capsule or tablet is made. If it is animal gelatin, it will not be suitable for vegans or vegetarians. Modified cellulose (hydroxypropyl methylcellulose) can be consumed by those who follow a vegetarian diet.||Yes|
Who can benefit from the consumption of guarana?
- Tiredness, weakness or chronic fatigue, provided that these conditions are not due to another underlying illness, for example, anemia.
- Intense physical exertion (athletes or very physical work).
- Memory loss.
- Difficulty concentrating.
- Helps improve intellectual performance and cognition (students).
- Loss of appetite.
- Desire to optimize athletic performance.
- Recovering your energy level after going through a period of illness or very high stress.
Some individuals suffering from recurrent headaches have noticed symptomatic relief from guarana. People who have a family history of cardiovascular disease and are interested in a guarana supplement should consult their doctor before taking it.
Is guarana recommended for athletes?
Are energy drinks with guarana healthy?
On the other hand, not all energy drinks that claim to have guarana really contain this product. In most cases, they are "guarana flavor" soft drinks, but they are only a mixture of dyes, flavorings and flavorings. Therefore, in the section "Our Selection" wher we list some of the best products out there, we have not included any guarana drinks.
What differences exist between guarana and coffee?
Is guarana recommended for weight loss?
How should guarana be taken?
What adverse effects can the consumption of guarana have?
What contraindications does guarana have?
- Anyone Under 12 Years of Age.
- Pregnant and Lactating Mothers.
- People with Hyperthyroidism.
- People with High Blood Pressure.
- People with Heart Disease.
- People with Blood Coagulation Disorders.
- People with Ulcers or Gastritis.
- People who have IBS (Irritable Bowel Syndrome).
- Sufferers of Insomnia.
- Epileptic People or Those who Suffer from Convulsive Disorders.
As we always recommend, anyone who suffers from a chronic disease (heart, endocrine, liver, metabolic) and is under pharmacological treatment should consult their doctor before taking guarana. In this way, possible side effects or drug interactions are prevented.
When looking for a quality guarana supplement, attention should be paid to the small print on the label, that is, to the nutritional information and the list of ingredients. Quality certifications are also a factor to consider. The purchasing criteria that should be considered when purchasing a guarana product are:
Concentration of Caffeine
The caffeine content in guarana products ranges from 12 mg to 198 mg. Some people are very sensitive to the effects of caffeine and high doses of guarana can cause nervousness, insomnia or headaches. In these cases, it is advisable to choose those guarana supplements that provide between 12 and 16 mg of caffeine per serving.
For those who do not tolerate large amounts of caffeine well, but want to improve their physical and intellectual performance, guarana supplements combined with maca or ginseng (Korean or Siberian) are an excellent option. They provide less caffeine, but they are very good energizers and natural stimulants.
Various ingredients can be added to guarana supplements: ginseng, maca, bee pollen, royal jelly, vitamins, minerals, taurine, among many others. Some of the added compounds that are not found in a quality supplement are: simple sugars, artificial colors and amphetamines (very dangerous).
The benefits of the other ingredients will depend on the characteristics of the person who consumes them. For example, a guarana supplement that contains Peruvian maca may be beneficial for a woman who is going through menopause, but it is probably not helpful for an average student.
Form of Consumption
Capsules and tablets can be taken anywhere and are easily transportable. Conversely, guarana powder must be dissolved in a drink before consuming it. For those who eat breakfast at work or travel often, capsules and tablets may represent the most convenient form of consumption.
Guarana powder has an intense and somewhat peculiar taste, slightly bitter, woody and earthy. Many people integrate it into smoothies so that when mixed with other ingredients its flavor becomes more pleasant. The capsules and tablets, thanks to their gelatin or modified cellulose coating, have practically no taste.
Guarana is a natural product that offers numerous health benefits. In addition to acting as an energizing and revitalizing physical and mental aid, guarana improves circulation and prevents the formation of blood clots. It also helps delay aging and decreases oxidative damage.
However, to take advantage of the positive effects of guarana supplementation, it is essential to practice responsible consumption. This includes of buying a product of optimum quality, respecting the appropriate dose and alternating usage with rest periods. An excess of guarana will not accelerate the results, but will instead cause adverse reactions.
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(Source of Featured Image: Tzogia Kappatou: 60251460/ 123rf.com)