Recently there has been a pretty hot topic up for debate on various health and fitness forums, and one which has caused quite a stir in the bodybuilding and fitness community as well. The topic in question is “which is better – Waxy Maize, or Highly Branched Cyclic Dextrin (HBCD)”? When it comes to working out and athletic performance, it simply cannot be denied that supplements have as big a part to play as any, in determining just how great a shape an individual is able to get themselves in, and just how efficient their performances in the gym or on the running track actually are. Two supplements which have both proven extremely popular as late, especially as more and more research is conducted upon them, are waxy maize and highly branched cyclic dextrin. Some people however, say that there is no room for both of them and that one simply has to go, to make way for the more superior product. Here we’ll be taking an in-depth look at both supplements to attempt to determine, which, if any, is the more effective of the two.
Waxy maize is a form of cornstarch which has a light and fluffy texture. It is pretty much flavourless and can be added to sports beverages for the purpose of improving athletic performance and the overall appearance of an individual’s physique as well. Once it is consumed, it will make its way through the stomach to the intestines where it will then be absorbed into the bloodstream and transported around the body. As the starch is rich in carbohydrates, these carbs are broken down and converted into glycogen, which the muscles use as fuel and energy. The idea behind the supplement is that as we work out and use up glycogen stores in the muscles, if consumed intra and post-workout, the glycogen stores will be replenished, and the muscles can begin working and repairing themselves following a workout.
Highly branched cyclic dextrin
HBCD is a refined form of carbohydrate, much like waxy maize, that has been designed to help improve athletic performance and recovery. This supplement is created via the breakdown of starch, and is used to create special clusters of sugar (glycogen molecules) where more enzymes are added to form the supplement into even longer chains. It works in pretty much the same way as wazy maize, where it is designed to replenish glycogen stores in the muscles. However, it is the molecular structure which sets it apart from waxy maize. HBCD has a greater osmalarity, which basically means that it is absorbed much quicker by the body, as well as in much higher quantities than other carb sources. Obviously the quicker it can be absorbed, and the more that can be absorbed, the quicker it can be delivered to cells within the muscles, which means they will begin repairing themselves and replenishing their energy levels much faster, and in much higher doses. It also provides a sustained release of energy gradually, as it doesn’t lead to an insulin spike, as with other carb supplements, which means the muscles are gradually fed with the glycogen, rather than all in one go.
Though both supplements are extremely beneficial from a exercise and working out standpoint, we’d have to say that the quicker absorption rate, and sustained release of energy thereafter, means that the HBCD does appear to be the more superior of the two.