A new sports nutrition drink, PREPD, which targets endurance athletes, has been launched by Australia-based food and beverage firm Premier Health, a start-up from Flinders University in South Australia.
The PREPD drink is reportedly backed by more than 20 years of medical research. This was originally focused on treating severe dehydration in children living in developing countries. Co-inventor Professor Graeme Young from Flinders University said his Adelaide team identified a special resistant starch to promote fluid absorption in the gut and have used this starch in PREPD drinks.
The company raised more than US$500,000 in seed capital from angel investors in June 2018 to market the formula to endurance athletes. PREPD has also teamed up with IRONMAN Oceania to launch the drink.
The drinks, available in mango-passionfruit and strawberry-kiwi flavours, are being sold in select gyms and stores and for AU$52 for an 8-pack.
“While the human body can’t store water in reserve, the resistant starch in PREPD unlocks the largely unused hydration potential of the large intestine to absorb up to five litres of fluid per day,” he said.
Preserve Health CEO David Vincent said there had not been any significant advances in hydration since the first sports drinks were invented more than 50 years ago. “Research shows a 2% drop in hydration can reduce athletic performance by up to 30%,” Vincent noted.
“PREPD changes all this by enhancing the effectiveness of water and any sports drink, reducing dehydration and helping athletes to perform at their peak for longer.”
Vincent said PREPD is a two-part system, used pre- and post-exercise, to complement sports drinks.
PREPD Prime is consumed between 6-18 hours before intense physical exertion, to promote better hydration when performing and then PREPD Recover is consumed immediately after heavy exertion, to replenish fluid and electrolytes, while boosting rehydration in recovery.
The smoothie-like drink combination has been tested on performance athletes, including AFL players in Australia.
The Flinders University clinical trial involved 27 players from Aussie rules football club the Adelaide Crows. PREPD formulations were incorporated into player hydration regimes to compare the results with normal practice. The study found that players were significantly better hydrated with a 47% decrease in player bodyweight loss between pre-training and recovery.