MusclePharm Energy Drink: Energy Sport & Energy Sport Zero

The long-awaited MusclePharm Energy Drink is here! The company has jumped into the energy drink market this month with the debut of Energy Sport and Energy Sport Zero (the zero-carb version).

MusclePharm Energy Sports Zero

MusclePharm enters the energy drink market with Energy Sports Zero, caffeine plus loads of extras!

2015 is shaping up to be a banner year for The Athlete’s Company. We’ve already seen them unveil the Hardcore Series (an exclusive line to and they are also about the release the GNC exclusive Black Series.

But this one is different, because it’s likely to end up in refrigerators all over the world – not just sports nutrition stores…

So as #MPNation spreads its wings, we see if they’re bringing anything from the world of sports nutrition to the crowded land of energy drinks.

Energy Sport claims to offer the following benefits to consumers:

  • Increase energy
  • Increase endurance and stamina
  • Delay fatigue
  • Improve focus and reaction time

Standard energy drink marketing. So what’s in MP’s energy drink and does it really “deliver a critical edge for athletes of all types?”

Sit back, relax, and pop a cold one as we see what’s under the hood!

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MusclePharm Energy Sports Zero Ingredients

Zero packs a whole host of ingredients into a 12 oz serving, we’d just like to know how much of each is in it. The Original formula with carbs is shown below.

As you can see from the ingredient label, Energy Sport Zero contains no sugars, carbs or calories, allowing you to get your quick fizzy energy fix without packing on any pounds.

But the carbohydrate-based version of MusclePharm’s Energy Drink (Sport Original) contains 39g carbs, from pure Cane Sugar and glucose – about as simple of sugars as you can possibly get.

Rather than dissect each and every ingredient on the label, we’ll highlight a few of the “featured” ingredients contained within:

  • Caffeine

    First and foremost, if you’re in the market for an energy drink you absolutely are curious as to how much is in it…right?

    Energy Sport Zero contains 120mg/12 oz serving, nothing earth-shattering by energy drink standards. This amount puts it slightly above regular old soft drinks and Red Bull, but slightly below most pre-workouts and other energy drinks on the market.

    As far as performance-enhancing benefits, caffeine increases energy, alertness and endurance.[1,2,3]

  • Taurine

    A non-essential amino acid, taurine is frequently paired with caffeine in energy drinks. It works synergistically with caffeine to improve reaction speed.[4]

    This just might come in handy if you slam an Energy Sport Zero before a big final!

  • Beta-Alanine (as CarnoSyn®)

    Everyone’s favorite tingle-inducing ergogenic. It’s a staple in pre-workouts for nearly anyone who lifts weights due to its benefits in endurance and exercise performance across a WIDE range of athletic endeavors.[5,6,7,8]

    Now, we have no idea how much is actually contained in a 12 oz. can of Zero, but given that it’s relatively high on the ingredient list, it’s a safe bet to say you’re getting at least half of your daily needs (1.6g) of beta-alanine.

    Although not new to the sports nutrition world, this ingredient and its effects will definitely be new to those who only use energy drinks.

  • Green Tea Extract

    MusclePharm Energy Drink Ingredients

    The original MusclePharm Energy Drink Ingredients (Energy Sport), which has 39g carbs from simple sugars

    Although we’re not sure how exactly MusclePharm is extracting it, green tea extract is most popular for its constituent, EGCG. However, all of the “catechins” from green tea work well, and some research has shown that they work better when used together than EGCG alone.[12,13,14,15]

    Regardless of how it’s extracted, it’s beneficial and works incredibly well alongside the caffeine and L-Theanine (the next ingredient).

    The question is the dosage, which we don’t know. Since it’s behind the caramel color in the Sport Zero ingredients, it likely isn’t a “clinical” dosage, so you probably won’t get the benefits in the sources cited above – but some benefits nevertheless.

  • L-Theanine

    Another amino acid thrown in for good measure is Theanine. It is a non-protein, non-dietary (not required) amino acid most commonly associated with green tea, which is also included in Zero. In clinical trials, it has been shown the ability to reduce anxiety and stress levels.[9]

    As a bonus, when combined with caffeine, the two show improvements in reaction time and focus and a decrease in fatigue.[10,11]

    L-Theanine has become a very hot ingredient lately, notably due to its ability to “take the edge off” of higher doses of caffeine. We’re happy with this trend, and are currently big fans of moderate doses (less than ~80mg) when used with caffeine.

  • The rest of the players

    To keep this from dragging on, we surmise the rest of the ingredients. In addition to all of the stimulants and amino acids contained within, Zero sports B-complex vitamins and a hefty dose of electrolytes.

    The B-vitamins will help with energy production in the body, and the electrolytes will help to maintain proper hydration levels in the body.

    Note here, that you are getting a MAJOR dose of niacin in a single 12oz. serving of Energy Sport Zero. So while you may or may not not get the tingles from the beta-alanine dosage, you may get some skin flushing from the niacin.

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The ingredients are good and all, but you probably already have a favorite energy drink and wonder how Energy Sport Zero compares to some of the other contenders on the market.

Stacking Up Against the Competition

Energy drinks are nothing new to the market as they’ve littered the soda aisle in every store for much of the past decade. But, how does this latest foray into that world stack up against 2 of the more popular energy drinks in Monster and VPX Bang?

Here’s a quick breakdown of some key ingredients and cost:

  • Caffeine: 120mg/12 oz for Energy Sport Zero, 357mg/16 oz. VPX Bang, 140mg/16 oz. for Monster Energy Absolute Zero
  • Sodium: 40mg/12 oz. for Energy Sport Zero, 40mg/16 oz. for Bang, 180mg/8oz. Monster
  • Potassium: 350mg/12 oz. for Energy Sport Zero, 85mg/16 oz. for Bang, 0mg for Monster
  • Cost: $35.99 for a 12 pack of Energy Sport Zero, $23.99 for a 12 pack of Bang, and $28.00 for a 12 pack of 16 oz. Monster

Can It be My Pre-workout?

Yes and no. It all depends on what you want in a pre-workout. If you’re a stim-junkie, this won’t be enough of a caffeine hit for you as it only contains 120mg in a single can. Now, you could chug two of these before a workout, but that’s a lot of carbonation that you’ll be dealing with during the workout.

Additionally, we’re fans of open labels on all our supplements here at PricePlow, so not knowing the dosages of L-Theanine and, more importantly, Beta-Alanine makes it hard to justify using it as your de facto pre-workout beverage.

Additionally, the cost (at time of publishing) is far greater than any pre workout supplement we typically recommend – especially at this caffeine dose.

But if you just need quick pick me up or something to help you get focused for an all-night study session or big test, this may just fit the bill!

(For more info, you can see our Top 10 Pre Workout Supplements list).

Flavors & Sizes Available:

Energy Sport Zero comes in 3 unique flavors: Citrus Edge, Power Punch, and Onyx Cherry.

It was released for distribution starting on April 1, 2015, so you should start seeing it pop up in stores any day now. As mentioned above, a 12 pack of Energy Sport Zero will retail for $35.99 through MusclePharm’s site.

Seeing as this is only a week old, there aren’t a substantial amount of reviews on Energy Sport Zero. A few of the early ones we’ve seen indicate the taste leaves a little to be desired, but we’ll save our overall opinion until more reviews are made.

Where to get the best price?

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  1. Desbrow B, et al; The effects of different doses of caffeine on endurance cycling time trial performance . J Sports Sci. (2012)
  2. Paluska SA; Caffeine and exercise . Curr Sports Med Rep. (2003)
  3. Graham TE, Spriet LL; Metabolic, catecholamine, and exercise performance responses to various doses of caffeine . J Appl Physiol. (1995)
  4. Aggarwal R, et al, Effect of caffeine and taurine on simulated laparoscopy performed following sleep deprivation . Br J Surg. (2011)
  5. Baguet, A; Important role of muscle carnosine in rowing performance.; Dept. of Movement and Sports Sciences, Ghent University; 2010
  6. Kern, B; Effects of β-alanine supplementation on performance and body composition in collegiate wrestlers and football players.; Human Performance and Physical Education Department, Adams State College; 2011
  7. Hoffman J; Short-duration beta-alanine supplementation increases training volume and reduces subjective feelings of fatigue in college football players.; Department of Health and Exercise Science, The College of New Jersey; 2008
  8. Hoffman, J; Beta-alanine and the hormonal response to exercise.; Health and Exercise Science, The College of New Jersey; 2008
  9. Kimura K, et al. L-Theanine reduces psychological and physiological stress responses. Biol Psychol. (2007)
  10. Einöther SJ, et al. L-theanine and caffeine improve task switching but not intersensory attention or subjective alertness. Appetite. (2010)
  11. Owen GN, et al. The combined effects of L-theanine and caffeine on cognitive performance and mood. Nutr Neurosci. (2008)
  12. Wang, H; Effects of catechin enriched green tea on body composition.; Unilever R&D; 2010
  13. Maki, K; Green tea catechin consumption enhances exercise-induced abdominal fat loss in overweight and obese adults.; Provident Clinical Research; 2009
  14. Hursel, R; The effects of green tea on weight loss and weight maintenance: a meta-analysis.; Department of Human Biology, Nutrition and Toxicology Research Institute Maastricht (NUTRIM) Maastricht University; 2009
  15. Furuyashiki, T; Tea catechin suppresses adipocyte differentiation accompanied by down-regulation of PPARgamma2 and C/EBPalpha in 3T3-L1 cells.; Department of Biofunctional Chemistry, Graduate School of Science and Technology, Kobe University; 2004
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