Gone are the days when coffee used to be the king of caffeine. The bean is known for its caffeine content and is still used by many. But, there’s a new kid in town a berry that offers a more potent stimulating punch. Meet Guarana.
It is a tiny, reddish-brown berry that is native to the Amazon basin. Although it may appear innocent, this small fruit is genuine rocket fuel. The Guarana contains four to six times the amount of caffeine compared to coffee, making it the king of caffeine. Each berry boasts a caffeine content of nearly 4.5 percent.
Guarana provides strong, energizing effects on your mind. If you’re seeking focus and motivation during those long shifts, Guarana is what you need.
However, it’s not only caffeine that gives you the kick—Guarana produces stimulants theobromine and theophylline that enhance the buzz. Besides Guarana’s incredible caffeine content, the berry also contains a variety of medicinal effects: It is packed with DNA-protecting antioxidants and boasts antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties.
Here’s everything you need to know about Guarana and its potential benefits.
Guarana Seeds Explained
The Guarana plant is named after Amazon’s Guarani tribe, who’d use the seeds for brewing a special drink. After decades, the use of guarana seeds as medicine remains effective. Guarana, also known as Paullinia Cupana, is widely used to improve athletic performance and reduce physical and mental fatigue. It is also used as a stimulant and for effective weight loss. It’s an addition to many weight loss and energy products.
Some also use guarana seeds to battle chronic fatigue syndrome and low blood pressure, as well as to prevent dysentery and malaria. It’s also often used to improve one’s sexual desire, increase the urine flow, and sometimes, as an astringent. There are several other uses of Guarana, including treatment of continuing diarrhea, heart problems, fever, headache, backache, joint pain, heat stress, and so on. When it comes to food manufacturing, the guarana seed often acts as a flavor ingredient in candy and beverages.
What are the different types of Guarana?
In the past few years, Guarana seeds have become very popular worldwide. There are many ways one can consume Guarana today:
Guarana Em Rama (Roasted Guarana Seeds)
Roasted guarana seeds are nearly equivalent to roasted chestnuts. Guarana farmers usually sell the roasted Guarana nuts, and the roasted Guarana seeds are then transformed into extracts or powders.
Guarana Extracts and Powder
Guarana in extract and powder form is widely available in health stores. You can use Guarana powders to make delicious beverages. For those looking for ways to make Guarana tinctures or pastes, consider Guarana powder. As for extracts, these are a rather concentrated form of the Guarana powder, but with more active components per dose. Furthermore, you can find capsules with Guarana extracts or powders. If you’re looking for a convenient way to consume Guarana, these are your best options so far.
Guarana on a Stick
The traditional way of usage and storage of Guarana. According to some users, Guarana on a stick is stronger compared to other forms, especially when the sticks are handmade. To make the Sticks, the seeds are initially roasted and ground in a powder. Upon adding water, the Guarana paste is transformed into a dough and then placed on a stick. Finally, it is dried over the fire until the stick gets rock solid.
Guarana syrup is not as common as the other types. However, it is slowly starting to gain some buzz in the beverage industry of Brazil.
What is guarana seed used for?
Guarana seeds are used for a number of things. According to WebMD, there has been evidence for:
● Lack of appetite in those with cancer. According to early research, consuming guarana extract can slightly improve appetite and prevent weight loss in those battling cancer, losing appetite and weight. The benefit, however, is relatively small.
● Anxiety. Doctors believe that consuming any product containing black horehound, hawthorn, passionflower, cola nut, valerian, and Guarana may reduce anxiety. It isn’t clear whether Guarana alone can provide benefits.
● Tiredness in individuals going through chemo. Taking Guarana may reduce the feeling of tiredness in those undergoing chemotherapy.
● Athletic performance. Taking single doses of products containing Guarana, vitamin C, B vitamins, and minerals enhances exercise tolerance in athletes by a moderate amount. Again, whether Guarana alone is the beneficiary is still not clear.
● Improving memory and cognitive function. A dose of Guarana extract may enhance your thinking abilities and a few aspects of memory. The same cannot be said for older people, though. Studies only show positive results in healthy individuals.
● The feeling of well-being. Various placebo-controlled double-blind studies in humans showed that Guaranà acutely enhances some parameters of cognitive performance without affecting the mood.
● Obesity. Pairing Guarana with damiana and mate seems to improve weight loss. There’s also developing evidence indicating a specific mishmash product that contains Guarana, Ephedra, and several vitamins and minerals can help reduce weight by 2.7kg over 8 weeks if used with exercise and a low-fat diet.
● Athletic performance
● Chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS)
● Fluid retention
● Heart disease
● Low blood pressure
● Enhancing sexual desire in healthy individuals
● Rheumatoid arthritis
● Menstrual cramps
● Other conditions
As you can see, the uses of Guarana are quite many. However, more research is needed to judge the effectiveness of this berry.
Is Guarana safe to take every day?
If you have difficulty breathing or notice any signs of allergic reactions, like hives, swelling on the face, tongue, lips, and throat, consider seeking emergency medical help. Although not every side effect is known, Guarana is said to be safer for most users when taken in an amount commonly seen in foods. Products that contain Guarana are safe when eaten and for a shorter period. As for interactions, the effects of Guarana may interfere if you’re already taking anxiolytics, antidepressants, or sleeping pills.
We’d suggest you to stop taking Guarana and contact your doctor immediately if you experience:
● Unusual bleeding (any sort of bleeding that won’t stop)
● Stomach irritation
● Increased blood pressure and heart rate
This is, by no means, a complete list of adverse effects of Guarana. Others may appear, and if so, consult your physician or healthcare provider regarding the side effects.
What are the health benefits of Guarana?
High in Antioxidants
Research shows that Guarana is packed with compounds boasting antioxidant properties, including caffeine, tannins, theobromine, catechins, and saponins. As a matter of fact, Guarana’s antioxidant profile is equivalent to that of green tea.
Reduces Fatigue and Improves Focus
According to a study, subjects that took a vitamin supplement containing Guarana felt less fatigued when completing a number of tests, as opposed to those who consumed a placebo. Also, one source shows that Guarana may reduce mental fatigue during breast cancer treatment without any adverse effects.
Helps You Learn Faster
A study was conducted to determine the effects of various doses of Guarana on learning. Participants took either 37.5mg, 75mg, 150mg, 300mg, or no guarana. Those who took either 37.5mg or 75mg of Guarana obtained the highest scores. Because low doses of Guarana offer low doses of caffeine, it is believed that besides caffeine, other compounds in Guarana may be somewhat responsible.
Promotes Weight Loss
As mentioned, Guarana is rich in caffeine, which can increase your metabolism by a whopping 11 percent over the course of 12 hours. A faster metabolism indicates your body burns more calories at rest. Test-tube studies also found that it can suppress genes aiding fat cell production while promoting genes that may slow it down.
Boosts Heart Health
The antioxidants present in Guarana support blood flow and can prevent blood clots. Studies have also reported that the berry may reduce the oxidation of “poor” LDL cholesterol. Note that oxidized LDL cholesterol contributes to plaque increase in the arteries. Adults who take Guarana have 27 percent less oxidized LDL compared to those who do not consume the fruit.
Features Anti-Cancer Properties
Test-tube and animal studies suggest that the Guarana seed can protect you from DNA damage. It may even suppress the growth of cancer cells. A study conducted in mice showed that those fed the fruit had 58 percent fewer cancer cells and a five-fold boost in cancer cell death, as opposed to mice that didn’t receive Guarana.
How much caffeine is in Guarana?
According to our trusted source, Paullinia Cupana contains 3.6 to 5.8 percent caffeine by weight. Therefore, if you take 4.7%, which is the average of that range, 1 gram or 1000mg of Paullinia Cupana would contain 47mg of caffeine on average. As you’re aware, Guarana extract is the concentrated form of Guarana, in which case, the seeds are processed to eliminate the caffeine in them. Many Guarana-based products carry Guarana extract, not ground or whole seeds, which increases the caffeine content.
Is Guarana in Red Bull?
There’s not a single soul in the Amazon that hasn’t heard about Guarana and its caffeine properties. It is this rich caffeine content that makes Paullinia Cupana a natural addition in various energy drinks. An 8.4oz can of Red Bull contains about 80mg of caffeine. So, when you see Paullinia Cupana listed on an energy drink, you can consider that “even more caffeine.”
Other bombastically named energy drinks like Full Throttle, Rockstar, and Monster contain the herbal supplement Guarana.
How long does Guarana last?
Just like drinking coffee, Guarana is safe to take on a daily basis. We’d recommend one shot per day as the caffeine content is higher than that of coffee. Not to mention the effects usually last longer than a cup of coffee. Guarana will provide your system with energy for 5-hour long on average.
One of the key benefits of Guarana over coffee would be its duration of the core stimulation. Unlike coffee, Guarana energy is significantly longer-lasting. On top of that, the stimulation is less tense and more translucent in character. Because it takes a while for the body to absorb Guarana, it usually results in a longer-lasting energy release over hours.
We recommend drinking the liquid shot about 15 minutes prior to your planned activity, but no later than 5 hours before bedtime to ensure you can sleep well. Best is to include the green, black, or brown shot to your breakfast to last you all day or as required about 15-min before your work, run, hike, or fun activity.
Does Guarana suppress appetite?
Paullinia Cupana is high in bioactive compounds, such as caffeine, catechins, epicatechins, saponins, theophylline, theobromine, tannins, and proanthocyanidins. According to studies, when mixed with damiana or yerba mate, Paullinia Cupana can suppress appetite in obese women. Simply put, the desire to eat and hunger pangs are reduced, which leads to weight loss. Guarana was also found to regulate the expression of genes involved in fat accumulation. The seed down-regulates the expression of pro-adipogenic genes and up-regulates the expression of anti-adipogenic genes. As a result, Guarana is often used to stimulate safe and healthy weight loss in obese people and treat eating disorders.
Guarana seed powder dosage
Generally, Guarana supplements are produced by preparing an extract from Guarana seeds or grinding the seeds in a powder. A single dose of 70mg Guarana powder is essentially on the lower end for accessible supplements. However, it is all you really need to reap the benefits, which may actually lessen at higher doses in some uses.
|Caffeine Content Comparison|
Common Beverage Products
|Plant Beverage||Caffeine Content||Avg. Caffeine in a 6oz beverage|
|Guarana seed (Paullinia cupana)||1-4.9%||200-400 mg|
|Coffee beans (Coffea sp)||1-2.5%||100-250 mg|
|Yerba mate leaves||0.7-2%||50-100 mg|
|Black tea (Camellia sinensis)||2.5-4.5%||10-60 mg|
|Chocolate (Cacao seed)||0.25%||13 mg|
Increasing energy, strength, & stamina
Healthy weight management
Promotes fat burning
Improves mental alertness & memory
Fighting blood clots
Toning skin & cellulite
Headache & migraine relief
Detoxifies the blood
Supporting a healthy heart
Origin: Brazil (Maués)
Ingredients: Wild harvested Guarana Seed
Parts Used: Seeds
Forms: Two ounces of powder or 60 vegetable capsules (550-600 mg).
How to use:
Powder: Take 1/2 tsp of dried powder in 8 oz. glass of favorite juice or smoothie once a day.
Capsules: Take 1 capsule 2 times a day with water or favorite beverage.
The gel caps we use are Vegicaps (vegetable) and are all-natural. No Animal By-Products, Starch Free, Wheat Free, Dairy Free, Preservative Free, Ethylene Oxide, and Sulfite FREE!
Legal Information: The Food and Drug Administration has not evaluated these statements. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.
Powdered (2oz), Capsule (s) 60 Vegicaps