Amino Acids – Lifting The Mask

Masking Amino Acids
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We like to think that we have some of the best tasting amino acid based products on the market, and it is something we pride ourselves on in the BULK POWDERS™ product team. The reason why we are proud of this is apparent if you have ever used Unflavoured Amino Acid products – such as an Unflavoured BCAA’s. The natural characteristics of an unflavoured BCAA product are very bitter, and an acquired taste to say the least. We use a number of tricks when developing new products to help overcome some of these naturally occurring flavours within the base material, and help to create a tasty, refreshing finished product.

Neutralise the naturally bitter flavours.

When flavouring an amino acid based product the main aim is to either neutralise the bitter flavours, or block the bitter flavours completely. We often do this by selecting flavours which help to work with the natural base flavour of the ingredient – this might sound strange considering we have flavours like mixed berry and mojito on the Instant BCAA flavour list…. However all these flavours do contain certain aspects of bitterness in the overall context of the finished flavour, which makes it taste the way we would expect a Mixed Berry or Mojito to taste. Mixed Berry for example will incorporate a slight bitterness by nature, berries often contain seeds which have a naturally bitter flavour, and this contributes to the overall flavour which we associate with “berries”. As such we use these bitter notes from the BCAA to work with the other flavour components we add to the product in order to create an authentic and refreshing Mixed Berry flavour.

Choosing the right flavouring ingredients.

Choosing the right flavouring ingredients can be the difference between the flavour tasting great, and a flavour tasting artificial or unrecognisable. Here at BULK POWDERS™ we take a lot of time, finding the right flavour component to give us the desired result. This comes irrespective of cost as we strive towards offering you the best flavours possible for the particular ingredient in question.

There are also a number of other ingredients in our products we use to further mask and/or enhance the flavour of our products.

Acids.

We typically use Citric Acid within our products to help enhance our flavours and mask the bitter flavours within the amino acid based products. Almost all the flavours we use in our Instant BCAA are fruity or acidic based, as such we add citric acid in order to make the flavours burst, much like they would in nature. Tropical for example would contain elements of tropical fruits which have a slight acidic flavour, adding citric acid helps to make this flavour more authentic.

Sweetener.

With all our flavours we select (Mixed Berry, Tropical, Mojito, Cola etc.) they all have a sweet flavour when you look at the “real” fruit or product. This may be due to naturally occurring sugars in the fruit, or in Cola flavours case, the sugars included to make it taste sweet. As we want to avoid adding sugar to our products we select a sweetener. Sweeteners require a much smaller dose when compared to sugar allowing for more amino acid/BCAA per serving in the finished product.

Colour.

Whilst this doesn’t directly impact upon your taste buds, colour can positively impact on the perception of flavour. We only use natural colours within our products to give the product a more natural appearance. We like to stay away from the brightly coloured artificial colours as this can promote the perception of an artificial tasting product.

As you can see, we put a lot of effort into flavouring each and every product. Amino Acids in particular pose a unique challenge due to their naturally bitter flavours – however we have a number of methods to overcome this and provide you with some delicious flavours.

About the Author

Rowan (BSc Hons Sport and Exercise Science) works within the BULK POWDERS™ Product Team. His role includes being responsible for Product Quality as well as contributing to Product Development.

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