Running in hot weather, strenuous cycling or indoor training on a turbo, causes us to sweat (in order to cool our bodies down). Doing endurance exercise, like a Marathon or long-distance ride also means we tend to consume a lot of sweet foods as we try to fuel ourselves with the carbohydrates we need to keep going... This is why we created the Avanti.
Let's first take a look at sweat... This is a natural function of exercise, the fitter you are the better your sweat response becomes! However, when we sweat we aren’t only losing water, we are also excreting electrolytes, sometimes called salts, and replacing these is important in order to maintain our body's fluid balance.
Sodium, an electrolyte found in sea salt, is an essential nutrient.
It plays an important role in maintaining blood pressure and assists in nutrient transport into your cells. Hyponatremia is a condition caused by low sodium levels in the blood. It can occur when athletes hydrate exclusively with water and are not replacing the sodium lost through sweat.
Mild symptoms include nausea, headaches, loss of balance and poor decision making, however left untreated it can become very serious and even life-threatening.
Mild symptoms are not uncommon in athletes competing in marathons, Ironman triathlons or long distance cycling.
Replacing sodium lost during exercise is really important not just to maintain fluid balance but also in preventing cramps as it is needed to ensure our muscle fibres are contracting properly and in the correct sequence.
Eating salty food helps hydration by stimulating our thirst, making us more likely to drink in sufficient quantities. Having sufficient sodium, alongside proper hydration, will help to avoid headaches after running and cycling too.
Sodium replacement for running and cycling
On very long rides or runs, our taste buds start to crave salt, a sign our body needs extra electrolytes to maintain fluid balance. Having a salty, savoury snack can overcome the flavour fatigue that sets in after too many sweet bars, drinks and gels.
At Veloforte we have done a lot of long rides, we know that sometimes toward the end of a long ride or run, a naturally tasty sweet bar just doesn’t hit the spot any more. Flavour fatigue is very common, the fast carbs we need for energy tend to be sugars and sweet stuff.
Adding a little salt is great way to stimulate taste buds so you are less aware of being ‘sugared out’.
Veloforte founder and head chef, Lara Giusti, experimented with different ways to offering something different, “people were searching for a more savoury profile and salt is the obvious way to go. In the Avanti bar deep caramel flavours come from chewy moist dates and the pecans give a nice smoky flavour. It’s essentially pecan pie meets salted caramel! It has a great salty kick, unctuous yummy caramel chewiness, that makes you salivate and clean your palate, leaving your mouth fresh.”
Salted caramel is a strong theme in the foodie world at the moment, with good reason, what people love about salted caramel is the contrast of sugar and salt coming together, it makes people happy! The warm maple syrupy and toasted pecan flavour profile of the Avanti combined with the saltiness cutting through makes you salivate and its very moreish!
As it's packed full of dates, pecans and almonds as well as sea salt, it gives you similar carbohydrate and protein amounts as our other bars (as well as being gluten-free & vegan too), so it can be used, before, during and after a ride, training session or run.
However, it really comes into its own on long endurance challenges when the salt helps with your sodium balance as you sweat more and because it’s delicious flavours and salty profile encourage you to fuel and hydrate at a time when you may be struggling to keep eating and drinking.
Natural Vegan Energy Bar
With the Avanti bar we wanted to create something Vegan that would meet all of the aesthetics of an award-winning, natural, powerful and delicious range - not to mention nutritious and easy on the stomach.
Jam packed full of delicious tasty natural foods the sweetness comes mainly from the caramel flavours of the dates which are also rich in dietary fibre, antioxidants, vitamin A, iron, potassium and minerals. A well-known super-food.
The smoky flavour of pecans also brings along a great selection of vitamins and minerals such as manganese, potassium, calcium, iron, magnesium, zinc, and selenium offering some wonderful health benefits.
From the almonds we have a great source of protein, fibre and healthy mono-unsaturated fat (good fat). They are rich in essential proteins to repair muscle cells & support the immune system.
Brown-rice syrup is made from whole grain rice so completely vegan. It tastes less sweet than white sugar and has a nutty flavour which compliments the pecans and delicious maple syrup, another great source of antioxidants.
Finally, a little sprinkling of spices rounds out the flavour profile along with the sea salt, a natural source of a number of minerals, including zinc, iron and potassium.
In taste testing the Avanti bar has been coming out as people’s favourite from our whole range.
Our bodies respond really well to the flavour profiles of sweet and salty. Just writing this is mouth-watering! Having the new Avanti bar in your pocket is a great reason to get out on a long, hot ride or run and really enjoy the flavours and benefits of a little sprinkling of sea salt.
(Available in Packs of 3, and Boxes of up to 24 bars)