Review for Go Girl Lemon Drop


100 mg


Scarcer than most Go Girl products, for whatever reason.  Be patient if you’re looking to find it.


I’m not the best suited individual when it comes to analyzing a design—I don’t sit there and examine it element by element and then as a whole, I just look at it and think, “Does it work?” then “Why or why not?”.  In this case, it bothers me, for the same reason most cans that bother me do—the color scheme.  You can make black and yellow work really nicely; in this case I think the shade of yellow is too dingy, and gives it the look of something that would fit right in at a grimy auto parts store—despite the fact that it’s a female-oriented energy drink.


With lemonade-flavored energy drinks, you either nail it or tank it—there’s very rarely an in between just because of the inflexible nature of the lemon flavor.  In this case, they’ve nailed it—Go Girl Lemon Drop has a Country Time charm about it; not convincing in the least, but exactly what you’re looking for if you’re looking for something that tastes like liquefied lemon-flavored hard candies.  If I could find it nearby, I would not mind drinking it again at all.


Go Girl Lemon Drop works surprisingly well considering its mere 100 mg of caffeine; it woke me up pretty quickly and even supplied a dose of jitters—not enough to annoy everyone around me, but enough that I could enjoy it.


Solid three and a half hours, sans crash.


For only $1.50, 100 mg of caffeine, and five calories, this is not a bad energy drink.  Females will surely appreciate it, and males…probably won’t touch it, but they could and feel confident that they’d get a good flavor and a decent dose of energy.

KEYWORDS: Go Girl Lemon Drop energy drink review, 5 calories per can, diet

Root @th3j35t3r with Google Chrome

Today we're going to have a lesson on password strength and software vulnerabilities.

Disclaimer: Th3J35t3r's site has served targeted malware in the past designed to capture data... especially from members of Anonymous. Perform these steps at your own risk!

There's something interesting afoot on The Jester's website...

In the upper right corner there's a little "Pi" symbol.  If you've ever watched the movie "The Net" you know that interesting secrets are beneath the Pi symbol.

After clicking on the Pi icon you are presented with a UNIX style login prompt.

The login prompt allows you to login with the username "guest" and no password.  However any attempts to login with "root" are met with a password prompt.

If you peek under the hood of the javascript running this terminal you'll find the following:

var conf_rootpassskey='5f7588bd54449';
However this is an encrypted or hashed password as any attempts to login using this as a password fail. Instead of attacking the password let's attack the underlying software itself.

Note: To perform these steps you MUST use Google Chrome.

Open the JavaScript console using Ctrl+Shift+J.

Then enter the following command:


Now you should be able to gain root access to Jester's system with no problem.  Use the username "root" and simply hit enter at the password prompt to enter a null password.

Congratulations.  You just rooted @th3j35t3r.

The lesson to take away from this is that no matter how secure or complex your password not have a false sense of security about your systems.  Software vulnerabilities can give users backdoors to your private information without a password! ...sometimes it only requires a little thinking outside the box.


Can you crack Th3J35t3r's root password?  Here's a link to get you started...

Exercise Round-Up: HIIT Prevents Angina; Stretching Reduces IGF-1 & Strength Gains; Cardio + Weights Lower TNF-Alpha; Protein Doesn't Works W/ Glucose Depletion; Polarization More Effective Than Threshold Training

That's (hopefully) not the way you want to "kick off" your year 2013, is it? So keep the booze at bay and party away, tonight ;-)
There are three things of which I would hope that they are on the top ranks in the things you are planning to do in 2013. And aside from proposing to your girlfriend, becoming a parent, graduating from whatever you are currently studying and keeping or, in the unfortunate case you don't have one, getting a job no other goals should be ranked in this must to in 2013 category: Work out, eat health and sleep deep and sufficiently. Against that background today's exercise round-up, which comprises all the few newsworthy papers that have been published during or shortly before the holiday season can actually be regarded as a means of orientation as far as practical realization of your best intentions for 2013 are concerned.

  • HIIT in the evening will keeps the heart attack away (Morikowa. 2012) -- Having a mild angina (coronary spasm was documented and no severe organic lesions were found) is not just no excuse for not working out, the 26 patients in a recent study that was conducted by a team of researchers from Kashiwara City, Japan, clearly shows that the number of spasms (=perceived heart attacks) was reduced from 2 to ZERO (average numbers) per 5 days in the men and women who performed an aerobic interval exercise training in the afternoon.

    Figure 1: Selected significantly improved health markers before and after the 3x workout short-term intervention involving 19 male and 7 suffering from angina (Morikawa. 2012)
    The protocol was performed on three consecutive days. After warming up thoroughly (10min), all subjects performed four sets of 3 min intervals at 75-85% of their heart rate reserve. The work to rest ratio was 1:1. In other words each of the intervals was followed by a phase of 3 minutes of active recovery. The whole session was concluded by a 5-10 minutes cool down.

    In conjunction with the initially mentioned benefits in terms of the recurrence of angina attacks the data in figure 1 should actually suffice to motivate you and lazy relatives to invest this small amount of time into the length and quality of your life- don't you think so?
  • Figure 2: The group of recreational trained young men (~29 years) that did no stretching at all had slightly, but significantly elevated IGF-1 levels (µg/L) after the workout (Borges. 2012).
    Stretching blunts acute IGF-1 response and 10 week strength gains (8RM test) (Borges. 2012) -- Now, hormonal responses to exercise are certainly not everything, the fact that the non-stretchers (OST) did yet also gain significantly more strength on the bench (19% vs. 7% and 5% in the static stretching during warm-up (SBST) and the stretching before each set (SDST) groups, respectively), the leg press, leg extensions and leg curls should yet call your attention, Mr. and Mrs. "I am so freaking professional that I stretch in between every set" maniacs - after 10 weeks of training the guy next to you who sticks to a handful of warm-up sets for injury prevention is going to outperform you.

    Remember this is not about not warming up and making sure that you don't hurt yourself, it's just even more more evidence that the die-hard belief that static stretches are beneficial (which was btw. also the research hypothesis of the Portuguese and Brazilian scientists) is dated text book knowledge.
  • Again: Not strength or, but strength and aerobics is the way to go (Ho. 2012) -- While the medical establishment is still reluctant to accept the notion that strength and aerobic training must go hand in hand and many muscle heads still plead, they would lose muscle or hamper their gains, when they hopped onto a treadmill from time to time. The evidence is clear: The advantages are simply non-negligible - for the gymbro trying to look muscular (which requires a low body fat percentage if you don't want to look simply ludicrous), and the average Australian (pre-)obese in a recently published study by Ho, Dhaliwal, Hills, and Pal who found that ...
    "Twelve weeks of moderate-intensity aerobic, resistance, but mainly combination exercise training decreased TNF-α in overweight and obese individuals compared to no exercise. Therefore, combination exercise training may be physiologically relevant in decreasing the risk of developing chronic diseases." (Ho. 2012)
    The exercise interventions were either 30 min of aerobic exercise on a treadmill (60 % heart rate reserve; HRR estimated using the Karvonen equation: 220 - age - resting heart rate), 30 min of resistance exercise (four sets of 8–12 repetitions at 10-RMlevel of leg press, leg curl, leg extension, bench press, and rear deltoid row, with each set completed in approximately 30 s with 1-min rest) or a combination of 15 min of aerobic exercise and 15 min of resistance exercise (two sets of the above exercises).
    Figure 3: The combined training did not only result in a maximal suppression of TNF-alpha, the latter was also highly correlated with the reduction in body fat (esp. in the belly area; cf. Ho. 2012)
    "Starting workload levels for each piece of equipment were tested by participants and if more than 10 repetitions were achieved, the weight was increased and after a short rest participants tried again. Likewise, if less than eight repetitions were achieved, the weight was decreased and after a short rest participants tried again. Participants reported to the Curtin Fitness Centre 3 days a week to complete the required exercise and either exercised at home the other 2 days or at the fitness center.

    If exercises were completed at home, dumbbells (adjustable weight 1.5–10.5 kg) were provided for resistance exercises (three sets of 10 repetitions for biceps curls, lunges, dumbbell raise, calf lift, and triceps extension for resistance group while the combination group did two sets of biceps curls and lunges and one set for dumbbell raise, calf lift, and triceps extension; back extension, push ups, and sit ups exercises were also included). Treadmills were equipped with heart rate sensors and participants were instructed to increase weight loads by 2.5-kg increments when they could complete more than 12 repetitions." (Ho. 2012)
    Maybe not the perfect program for you, but I bet you know someone who "wants" to make room for 30 min of exercise in 2013, don't you? Ah,... don't tell them that 67-74% compliance was enough to elicit a 30%+ decrease in TNF-alpha and finally allow the participants to drop body fat, though ;-)
  • You can have your peri-workout protein even if you want to exploit the AMPK & PGC-1 bonus of training glycogen depleted (Taylor. 2012) -- Actually I have discussed that in the Intermittent Thoughts more than a year ago, but since the debate just goes on forever, I thought it may be worth posting the results of a recent study pertaining to the issue of peri-workout protein ingestion and its purported (yet non-existent!) negative side effects on the beneficial AMPK response to glycogen depleting exercises (note: that's not the AMPK that's increased in your brain, when you starve yourself for longer time periods, the "bad" one that will make you ravenously hungry, induce overeating and shut down your metabolism).
    As long as you remain glycogen depleted protein has no effect on the beneficial part of the exercise induced AMPK expression (read more)
    "After performing a glycogen-depleting protocol the evening before, the subsequent morning ten active men performed 45 min steady-state cycling at 50 % of peak power output (PPO) followed by an exercise capacity test (1-min intervals at 80 % PPO interspersed with 1-min periods at 40 % PPO).

    In a repeated measures design, subjects consumed 20 g of a casein hydrolysate solution (PRO) 45 min before exercise, 10 g during and a further 20 g immediately post-exercise, or an equivalent volume of a non-calorie taste matched placebo (PLA)." (Taylor. 2012)
    In view of the fact that the post-exercise muscle glycogen was not different between the protein supplementation and the "on empty" trial, it is not exactly surprising that the p-AMPK levels increased threefold and the PGC-1mRNA increased sixfold in the 3h after the workout. And even the blunted increase in eEF2 activation is probably only a sign that the muscle started taking up protein right away and thus did not have ask for more after the workout - That said,Taylor et al. are right to point out that
    "athletes who deliberately incorporate training phases with reduced muscle glycogen into their training programmes may consume protein before, during and after exercise without negating signalling through the AMPK cascade." (Taylor. 2012)
    Ah, don't overlook the words "training phases" - remember what I wrote about training glycogen depleted in the context of the PGC-1 a-4 post and doing cardio before a workout? It's an intensity technique and not a necessity for everyone on every training day in 2013. Plus, glycogen depletion does require repletion! Running around 24/7/365 is not an option for 2013.
  • Aside "polarization" your cycling performance can also benefit from baking soda & beta alanine (read more)
    Polarize your training and optimize your gains (Neall. 2012) -- What makes HIIT so effective? The cyclicity of high and low intensity, right! It's the same cycle of ups and downs you find everywhere in nature. Against that background it should actually not surprise you that Neal et al. have now found male cyclist record greater training improvements on a polarised model exercise regimen (6.4/hrs per week; 80%, 0%, 20% of training time in low, moderate and high intensity zones) than on a threshold model (7.5hrs per week; 57%, 43%, 0% training intensity distribution).

    According to the researchers from the University of Stirling, both groups recorded performance improvements, yet those in the group that followed the polarized regimen saw 5% greater increases in peak power output, 7% greater increases in lactate threshold, and 48% greater increases in high-intensity exercise capacity.

Thats it for today and in fact for the year 2012. The last one of 365 new posts here at the SuppVersity and probably twice or thrice as many on the SuppVersity Facebook Wall (it would be ~5-6x more on Facebook, if I had started posting short news on Facebook in January already)... Apropos, if you want some additional news before the turn of the year you should make sure to visit, today, to read and learn more about.
  • A brief history of anti-hangover cures: The ancient Assyrians swore by Ground birds' beaks and myrrh. Raw eel and bitter almonds is a recipe from Europe that was popular during the Middle Ages. The Mongolians were more into  sheep's eyes, while the Chinese must have listened to Thursday's installment of On Short Notice and went with green tea. Us Germans like it traditional (not me though) and eat "Tom's breakfast" (Katerfrühstück), a postbinge breakfast with Bismark Herring, pickles, rollmops and/or sauerkraut (this stuff does work, by the way, 'cause it helps replenish the lost electrolytes).
    Harvard Health Letters headline: "The new medicine: muscle strength. It's not just for bodybuilders. Strength training is critical for all of us." (read more)
  • Creatine reduces total antioxidant defenses? Scientists confirm for the 1012532x that creatine works and to make sure somebody even reads their study they overemphasis an increase in uric acid and decreases in TAS in the creatine supplementation group - a reason for concern? (read more)
  • Case report: Type I diabetes remission without insulin therapy on gluten-free diet in a 6-year old boy with type 1 diabetes mellitus. (read more)
  • Got Acne? Insulin resistance makes men break out. You better don't rely on fasted values, but get an OGGT ASAP(!) cause it turned out to be the most accurate independent predictor of acne at multivariate analysis. (read more)
I guess the one thing that remains to be said now is:  

HAPPY NEW YEAR everyone! 

Don't party too wild, and if you do, drink your green tea before the binge - this is (contrary to the historical advice in the box above) indicated by the latest science you should remember from Thursday's Science Round Up on Super Human Radio ;-)

    • Borges Bastos CL, Miranda H, Gomes de Souza Vale R, de Nazaré Dias Portal M, Gomes TM, da Silva Novaes J, Winchester JB. Chronic Effect Of Static Stretching On Strength Performance And Basal Serum Igf-1 Levels. J Strength Cond Res. 2012 Dec 18.
    • Ho SS, Dhaliwal SS, Hills AP, Pal S. Effects of Chronic Exercise Training on Inflammatory Markers in Australian Overweight and Obese Individuals in a Randomized Controlled Trial. Inflammation. 2012 Dec 19.
    • Morikawa Y, Mizuno Y, Harada E, Katoh D, Kashiwagi Y, Morita S, Yoshimura M, Uemura S, Saito Y, Yasue H. Aerobic interval exercise training in the afternoon reduces attacks of coronary spastic angina in conjunction with improvement in endothelial function, oxidative stress, and inflammation. Coron Artery Dis. 2012 Dec 14.
    • Neal CM, Hunter AM, Brennan L, O'Sullivan A, Hamilton DL, De Vito G, Galloway SD. Six Weeks Of A Polarised Training Intensity Distribution Leads To Greater Physiological And Performance Adaptations Than A Threshold Model In Trained Cyclists. J Appl Physiol. 2012 Dec 20.
    • Taylor C, Bartlett JD, van de Graaf CS, Louhelainen J, Coyne V, Iqbal Z, Maclaren DP, Gregson W, Close GL, Morton JP. Protein ingestion does not impair exercise-induced AMPK signalling when in a glycogen-depleted state: implications for train-low compete-high. Eur J Appl Physiol. 2012 Dec 23.

    Forskolin: Friend or Foe? Stories and Studies About Fat Loss, Lean Gains, Topical Cellulite Treatment, Testosterone, Cancer, Hepatotoxicity, Drug Interactions & More

    There is a single human study that would suggest that forskolin would make you get closer to this classic physique w/out tons of salad (who said that's necessary anyway?).
    Since Maxim asked in one of his more recent comments about the usefulness and/or downsides of forskolin, I dediced to dedicate this Sunday (finally again?) to answering a user question and am going to briefly sum up some older and the few novel findings on forskolin I am aware of.

    For those of you who find that boring: Don't blame Maxim alone, another reason for this decision was that I have seen discussions on forskolin resurface elsewhere on the Internet. By the way, I write re-surfaced, because forskolin has once been hailed as a testbooster and fat loss adjuvant, but as the prices increased and people came out with faked or low-quality products that did not yield results, the market collapsed.

    What is forskolin and where does it originate from?

    As usually there is more than a single answer to this question. The most straight forward general ones are probably (a) it is a white to white with yellow cast powder, or (b) a labdane diterpenoid with antihypertensive, positive inotropic, platelet aggregation inhibitory and adenylate cyclase activating properties. Moreover, forskolin is able to activate the adenylate cyclase and thus increase the intracellular cyclic AMP levels in most tissues and cells. And hat  it's called forskolin, because it is derived from the Indiant plan Coleus forskohlii is probably something 99% of you knew already.

    The reason I suppose that Maxim got interested in it, is that it is commonly used in cell studies to raise the levels of cyclic AMP (cAMP; cf. Alasbahi. 2012) and did a pretty impressive job in the recently discussed PGC-1a study. On the other hand, it did also increase the expression of the aromatase enzyme in the Yang study mentioned in the "Natural Sildenafil & Testosterone Alternative" post on which Maxim replied with the initially mentioned comment.

    "Wait, wasn't it supposed to be a testbooster and now it also inhibits myostatin and increases estrogen? What does this stuff not do?" - Well, forskolin is, above all, a cAMP modulator

    Forskolins chemical structure. Sometimes it's also referred to as Colforsin; 7-beta-acetoxy-8, 13-epoxy-1-alpha, 6-beta, 9-alpha-trihydroxylabd-14-en-11-one; or Coleonol (img. from Sigma-Aldrich's product database)
    I know that sounds confusing, but in essence forskolin does nothing but increasing cAMP levels in almost all types of cells. cAMP a breakdown product of ATP (=> cAMP => AMP) in turn is one of those molecules which exert most their effects as intracellular signal transducer. In that, it is involved in the activation of protein kinases and regulates the effects of adrenaline and glucagon. It also modulates the calcium channels and contributes to growth hormone release; unfortunately, cAMP has also been implicated in the proliferation of not very beneficial cell growth aka cancer. The same ion-flux mediation has recently been implicated in the etiology of ADHD, as well (Arnsten. 2012).

    Still, it's not all about c-AMP. Probably cAMP unrelated downsides of coleus forkohlii are for example:
    • forskolin induces hepatic CYP2C enzymes and coleus forskohlii extract and thus attenuates the anticoagulant action of warfarin. (Yokotan. 2012) 
    • even more than isolated forskolin, coleus forskohlii  messes with the hepatic enzyme cascade (P450) and has even been shown to be hepatoxic in a study published in the July issue of the Journal of Toxicology (Virgona. 2012)
    On the other hand there are a handful of benefits, e.g.
    • Figure 1: Effects of 12 weeks on 2x250mg (10%) forskolin on testosterone (free and total) and lean & fat mass (Godard. 2005)
      In a 2005 study (Godard. 2005), which caused quite a stir in the health and fitness community back then, Godard et al. observed profound beneficial effects of testosterone and body composition (cf. figure 1) after the ingestion of 2x250mg of a 10% standardized forskolin (Forslean).

      Now, the unfortunate truth is that the15 subjects (average age, BMI, and body fat percent were 24.4 +/- 5.9 years, 32.5 +/- 4.1 kg/m2 , and 35.2 +/- 8.3%) who had been randomized to the active arm of the study, and the 15 participants in the placebo arm (28.7 +/- 8.6 years, 32.6 +/- 3.8 kg/m2 , and 35.0 +/- 7.3%) were non-active sedentary overweight/obese (BMI 26 kg/m2 or more) individuals. Add the funding by Sabinsa (Forslean producer) to the equation and decide for yourself how relevant you think the results are going to be for you...
    • In several in-vitro studies, forskolin has been used as a positive control to compare the effects of other compounds on the testosterone release in leydig cells. Lin et al. for example used it in 2001 as a comparison for lactate and found a ~3x increase in testosterone release in incubated leydig cells (Lin. 2001). A similar study by Yu et al. showed that the addition of green tea catechins lead to an additional stimulation of forskolin induced testosterone production in cell cultures (Yu. 2010).
    • Figure 2: Results of 12-week intervention w/ forskolin containing topical cream (Roure. 2011)
      As part of a topical cosmetic slimming product combining tetrahydroxypropyl ethylenediamine, caffeine, carnitine, retinol and, obviously, forskolin it has shown some promise as a topical anti-cellulite and toning agent (Roure. 2011). The clinical study was however financed by Johnson & Johnson and I am not sure how much of the effects were actually brought about by forskolin (the placebo was a basic gel with the same texture containing mainly water, gelifying and preservative systems). So take the data in figure 2 with a grain of salt, ladies - I bet 12 weeks on this product are not going to be exactly inexpensive.
      • The administration of forskolin in conjunction with rutin (the glycoside between the flavonol quercetin and the disaccharide rutinose), vitamin B1 & B2 in a 2010 study by Pescosolido et. al. lead to a significant reduction in intra-ocular pressure in 15 glaucoma patients after 40 days (Pescosolido. 2010). Similar results were observed in a 2012 study for forskolin and rutin alone (Vetrugno. 2012)
      • An in-vitro study by Cristobal et al. provides first evidence for the ability of forskolin to restore PPA2 in acute myeloid leukemia. That would make it a potential candidate for the treatment of this type of cancer, but to my knowledge there is as of yet not even a rodent study that would support these in-vitro results. Moreover, previous studies have suggested that Forskolin may even favor the proliferation of other types of leukemia (Kobayashi. 1994)
          Time to weigh the "established" benefits and downsides

          Figure 3: Effect of different doses of forskolin with and w/out epinephrine on FFA release from rat adipocytes - watch out this is from yet another in-vitro study with rodent cells (Litosch. 1982)
           In view of the fact that the aforementioned study by Godard is the only human study is only backed up by in-vitro data from rodent studies (Litosch. 1982, cf. figure 3), the fat loss benefits are as  Jeukendrup et al. point out in their 2011 review of purported fat burners...
          "[...] promising, there is [yet] only one study at the present time and more work is required before forskolin can be recommended as a fat metabolism-enhancing substance." (Jeukendrup. 2011)
          If you add to this the host of wanted and unwanted, known and unknown side effects that occur in response to the coleus foskohlii induced cytochrome P450 modulation (e.g. the mice in the aforementioned study by Virgona lost some visceral fat, but the costs were increased fat deposition in the liver and elevated transaminase levels).

          With the questionable "fat loss" benefits (remember stress is also a powerful lypolitic and the problem is not to get the fat out of the cell, but rather to burn it), and the almost non-existant human data on the purported testosterone boosting effects, this should be reason enough not to buy more than one bottle for a test-run. After which I highly suggest to do some lab work to see if whatever good or bad you believe you are feeling is an actual boost in T (check T-levels) or hepatic side effects (check ALT, AST & ALP).

          Note (update in response to comments): As far as the hepatoxicity is concerned the suggested dosage of 2x 250mg coleus forskholii most supplements come with may be higher than the medium dose in the study by Virgona, but is still probably "liver save" if you double dose on that, you are however landing in the no-man's land (=not tested for) gray zone between the medium dosage and the "danger zone" of  ~49mg/kg per day (human dose equivalent) that was tested in the study. Don't freak out, if you did that in the past, the levels return to normal afterwards and temporarily elevated ALT + AST or ALP levels do not necessarily mean that your liver is whacked forever ;-)

          • Alasbahi RH, Melzig MF. Forskolin and derivatives as tools for studying the role of cAMP. Pharmazie. 2012 Jan;67(1):5-13.
          • Arnsten AF, Jin LE. Guanfacine for the treatment of cognitive disorders: a century of discoveries at Yale. Yale J Biol Med. 2012 Mar;85(1):45-58. Epub 2012 Mar 29.
          • Godard MP, Johnson BA, Richmond SR. Body composition and hormonal adaptations associated with forskolin consumption in overweight and obese men. Obes Res. 2005 Aug;13(8):1335-43. 
          • Jeukendrup AE, Randell R. Fat burners: nutrition supplements that increase fat metabolism. Obes Rev. 2011 Oct;12(10):841-51. 
          • Kobayashi K, Nishikawa M, Omay SB, Toyoda H, Deguchi K, Shirakawa S. Forskolin potentiates G-CSF-induced proliferation of a murine myeloblastic leukemia cell line. Leuk Res. 1994 Feb;18(2):111-7.
          • Lin H, Wang SW, Wang RY, Wang PS. Stimulatory effect of lactate on testosterone production by rat Leydig cells. J Cell Biochem. 2001 Jun 26-Jul 25;83(1):147-54.
          • Pescosolido N, Librando A. Oral administration of an association of forskolin, rutin and vitamins B1 and B2 potentiates the hypotonising effects of pharmacological treatments in POAG patients. Clin Ter. 2010;161(3):e81-5. 
          • Roure R, Oddos T, Rossi A, Vial F, Bertin C. Evaluation of the efficacy of a topical cosmetic slimming product combining tetrahydroxypropyl ethylenediamine, caffeine, carnitine, forskolin and retinol, In vitro, ex vivo and in vivo studies. Int J Cosmet Sci. 2011 Dec;33(6):519-26.
          • Vetrugno M, Uva MG, Russo V, Iester M, Ciancaglini M, Brusini P, Centofanti M, Rossetti LM. Oral administration of forskolin and rutin contributes to intraocular pressure control in primary open angle glaucoma patients under maximum tolerated medical therapy. J Ocul Pharmacol Ther. 2012 Oct;28(5):536-41.
          • Virgona N, Taki Y, Yamada S, Umegaki K. Dietary Coleus forskohlii extract generates dose-related hepatotoxicity in mice. J Appl Toxicol. 2012 Jun 22.
          • Yokotani K, Chiba T, Sato Y, Taki Y, Yamada S, Shinozuka K, Murata M, Umegaki K. Hepatic cytochrome P450 mediates interaction between warfarin and Coleus forskohlii extract in vivo and in vitro. J Pharm Pharmacol. 2012 Dec;64(12):1793-801.
          • Yu PL, Pu HF, Chen SY, Wang SW, Wang PS. Effects of catechin, epicatechin and epigallocatechin gallate on testosterone production in rat leydig cells. J Cell Biochem. 2010 May 15;110(2):333-42.

          Snapchat Covert Screen Capture for Android Revealed

          Capture of a SnapChat image.

          At a family gathering today, a relative introduced me to SnapChat, and showed me how it only temporarilly stores images, then deletes them when you're finished looking at them.

          For those who don't know SnapChat is a "temporary" image service.  The concept is simple - images are sent, viewed, and destroyed within 10 seconds.  If a user attempts to take a screenshot of the image, the sender is sent a notification.  I tested the "screenshot detection" and sure enough...if you take a screenshot with your Android phone it really does send a notification!

          It was recently revealed that there is a method of capturing SnapChat images for iOS without the sender knowing by accessing the files directly on the device's storage drive.  But this only works on iPhone or iPod Touch.

          Always up for a challenge, I decided to see if I could bypass SnapChat's "temporary" storage and save a permanent copy of photos I receive.

          After performing some analysis of how SnapChat works, today I'm going to reveal how to permanently save incoming SnapChat photos on any Android phone.

          Android phones have a feature called "USB Debugging" which is commonly only used by tech savvy users or developers.  This feature allows you to connect your Android phone to your computer and monitor its activities using the Android SDK.

          One of the features of the Android SDK is, you guessed it, a screen capture utility.

          By simply following these instructions from you can capture the current screen without alerting the SnapChat app.  Simply time clicking the "Refresh" button just right and you'll be able to capture that "secret" photo.

          Note that this is not a flaw in the SnapChat app - this is the intentional design of the Android operating system.

          This is a "high tech" method of defeating SnapChat.  A "low tech" undetectable method would be to simply take a picture of you phone's screen using a camera from another device.

          So what should users take away from this? A simple security lesson - if you don't want someone to be able to save something you send them, and don't want to risk that knowledge or picture from being posted publicly, then don't send it to anyone in the first place.

          It came and it went

          It's always amazing how fast Christmas comes. Little kids in costumes are knocking on your door demanding candy and then the next thing  you know the neighbourhood smells of turkey and everyone is stressed out. It's such a huge holiday, all the preparing, spending, eating, and then it's over so fast. At least I will have my photos to help me remember the big day, made especially fantastic by the newest addition to our family. I don't normally name my possessions, but this one naturally started out as Marky Mark, but then I took a few shots and decided it was a girl. 
          So now she's nameless.

           With my other camera, Christmas was a dismal grainy affair. But now I can take shots like this, because she's full framed! ( I was feeling very black and white and lifestyle-ish) 
           Check out the present blur, he must have been pretty excited!
          This one asked for that Snoopy months ago, and Grandma was listening, which I noticed by the other gifts we received, she listens very well.
          My brother couldn't make it for Christmas, so I had the bright idea to print a huge photo of his head and take him with us. Dad thought it was a great idea. Justin had drinks, hung out after dinner, napped, and played in the tree. He was so well loved, that Christmas morning dad drove back home to get him when he realized he forgot him. 
           I love how much more room I have with the full frame!
           Emily's pretty funny when it comes to filling out her gift tags.
           Dad and Justin were admiring Kerry's new wheels. 
           And in typical Williams' style, I got my "Christmas photo". The same as always, lots of laughs (from them), lots of sighs (from me) and lots of shots like this.

           Sally didn't want any part of the annual "dogs in front of the tree" photo.

          Linus posing on our new bedding. Our room is a dark cave but now I can shoot anywhere! (with in reason.)
          I hope everyone had a very safe Christmas, and that you spend New Years with the ones you love! 

          Review for Aeroshot Energy--Green Apple


          100 mg


          Fairly scattered; even the chain I found it at carries it inconsistently.


          Aesthetically, this is quite drab.  The only reason it catches your attention is for the image of the unique administration inhaler thing on front, but it’s not enough to keep your interest after seeing the $2.99 price tag, and you move on—unless, of course, you happen to have entered into the gas station with a sibling who, having heard that these are really bad, is more than willing to fund the review of all three flavors.

          As far as function is concerned, this is an absolute disaster.  I assume the idea behind going the weird powder inhaler thingy route is convenience/ease of administration, but…it’s neither convenient nor easy.  Opening it’s a cinch, but from there it’s not like you can dump it out in your mouth or anything—you’re supposed to “Draw [it] into your mouth”—which basically means trying to suck it in just using the power of your cheeks, all the while trying to keep from aspirating it—which isn’t as easy as it sounds.  To top it off, it took me a couple of minutes to get it all out (spurt by spurt), so even if you manage to not inhale it, it takes you so long that you might as well go with an energy drink or shot (as soon as I find one that I really like, I’ll let you know)—heck, downing a BFC Monster is more convenient than this.

          Bottom line is the idea’s a complete bust.  Better make a powder that you can mix into water or a shot or something like that—but this was just terrible.


          The process of actually ingesting this powder was one of the most vile, repulsive, stomach-churning experiences I’ve had since I was compelled to eat some sort of cow organ (I think it was a pancreas or spleen…) when I was in Guatemala.  Given how small the actual quantity of powder is (about ½ teaspoon) it shouldn’t surprise me that it tastes so bad, but it’s kind of hard to prepare yourself for the onslaught of caffeine, b-vitamins, artificial sweeteners, and bad fake apple flavoring that comes—the tastes of the first three dominate; the fourth is more of an insulting afterthought than anything else.  The first hit very nearly made me sick to my stomach, but what was worse was having to draw it in time after time after time because the stupid drawing process yielded so little of the inhaler’s contents.  After two minutes, I was quite ready to retch—only superior control over my gag reflex (which helped me keep down the mystery cow organ) kept me from doing so.

          I’ll keep going with the rest of the review, but if you’re reading this on your phone or something and are needing to make a quick decision, I’ll tell you right now that it’s not worth it.  It’s been a few days and I still shudder at the thought.

          KICK (INTENSITY)—8.5

          It’s a pity that this stuff tastes so bad, because it kicks so nicely.  The effects have a pleasant way of building up to a nice, jittery level of energy that’s quite conducive to running errands and buzzing about whatever else needs doing.  If they could make this 1) easy to take, 2) not so obscene, and 3) less expensive, I’d be quite happy to do this again.

          KICK (DURATION)—8.5

          I almost got four hours of energy out of this, after which I didn’t crash, but definitely felt sleepy again—though that probably depended more on my level of fatigue than anything else.  But the lack of crash was nice.

          THE PRODUCT OVERALL—5.67

          The kick is really nice, but getting through the difficulty in administration and repugnant flavor to experience it is like slaying an enormous, fire-breathing dragon only to have the princess you rescue reward you with a high-five for your troubles—the high-five itself is cool, but not worth the trouble by a long shot.  This is an abysmal energy product, and deserves an eternity on the shelves of Big Lots for trying to impose itself upon the world.  Avoid at all costs.


          KEYWORDS: Aeroshot Energy Green Apple review

          Yohimbine & Berberine Protect From Death Due to LPS Intoxication; BCAAs Inhibit Serotonin Metabolism & Cause Anxiety, Tryptophan but not SSRIs Help; Sweet Tea Leaves Are PPAR-G Antagonists & Battle High Lipid + Leptin Levels

          Skip the fireworks invest the money in some quality ingredients for a fondue or whatever you like and invest the (often non-negligible) rest of the money in a gym membership for the next year.
          Actually my figure of the week is 115,000,000 EUR (~152,000,000 US Dollar), which is the sum my fellow country men and women are about to waste on pyrotechnics this year. And a scientifically unconfirmed addition based on my personal observation: 90% of the worst offenders as far as spending money for fireworks goes are at least overweight. Would be interesting to see, if the use of pyrotechnics on New Years Eve is directly associated with fat mass...

          I mean, it could be that they spent so much money on their fireworks that they feel they can only afford the junkfood of which everybody and his/her mama still tend to believe that it would be cheaper than buying fresh products and preparing your own food from those.

          Ah, I am ranting. That's usually Carl Lanore's task, so I will better go on with the items I have compiled for the today's last installment of On Short Notice in the year 2012:
          • Berberine + yohimbine - a synergistic duo to prevent LPS toxicity (Li. 2012) -- With all the recent hoopla about the gut microbiome, I suppose that I don't have to tell you what the acronym LPS stands for, right? Hmm... just to make sure it stands for lipopolysaccharide endotoxins which are produced by gram negative bacteria in your gut and are so "toxic" (in fact they cause profound inflammation) that they can be lethal at higher doses.

            Figure 1: Survival rates (%) after ALB/c mice LPS injection (Li. 2012)
            A group of Chinese scientists have now found that aside from berberine the anti-inflammatory effects of which have been known for quite some time now, yohimbine administered in a daily dose of 2mg/kg (human equivalent 0.16mg/kg) does add to the survival rate of berberine treated rodents (human equivalent 4mg/kg) that were injected intragastrically (so not directly into the blood) with a potentially lethal dosage of 20mg/kg LPS. What's more, taken on its own yohimbine is even more potent than the alkaloid that's found in such plants as Berberis aquifolium, Oregon grape, Berberis vulgaris, Berberis aristata, Hydrastis canadensis (goldenseal), Phellodendron amurense, Coptis chinensis and Tinospora cordifolia.

            The mechanism is mediated by the prevention of liver injury, an upregulating of IL-10 production (an anti-inflammatory cytokine), and related anti-inflammatory effects resulting from the suppression of phosphorylation of IkBa, JNK, ERK and IRF3 in macrophages.

          • Chronic 9-week high BCAA diet impairs brain tryptophan levels and causes anxiety (Coppola. 2012) -- Scientists from the Duke University took another look at the BCAA-tryptophan depression connection, you may have read about in the context of my "Sugar Addicted or Just Stressed Out?" post from January 3, 2012.

            According to the results Anna Coppola and her colleagues are about to publish in the American Journal of Physiology  - Endocrinololgy and Metabolism the provision of a BCAA-enriched diet for 9 weeks leads to both reductions in brain tryptophan levels and an increased turnover of serotonin (5-HT) in rodent brains:
            Figure 2: Composition of low fat  (LF) and high fat (HF) diets with or without added BCAAs (left); effects on the ratio of tryptophan  to the molar sum of large neutral amino acids with and without supplemental  tryptophan in the drinking water and 5HT turnover in the brain (no supplemental trp, right; Coppola. 2012)
            Both groups (BCAA and non-BCAA) consumed about identical amounts of food as the rodents in the complementary (LF or HF) groups, which confirms that the BCAA content did not modify the taste of the chow or rendered it unpalatable (cannot have been cheap bulk powder then ;-). The reduction in both the availability of tryptophan as well as the increase in serotonin (5-HT) turnover in the brain must in fact have been a consequence of the added BCAAs and are most likely the root of the disrupted transport of tryptophan across the BBB in rats, leading to reduced exploratory behavior of rats in EPM testing, a sign of increased anxiety.
            "Recent studies demonstrating a strong  association between BCAA levels, obesity, and obesity-related metabolic disorders, when linked to the findings reported here, may help to explain the strong association between obesity and behavioral abnormalities, including depression and anxiety." (Coppola. 2012)
            As the slight differences between the high an low carb diets show, other nutrients can influence serotonin as well (read more)
            In this regard it is important to point out that these negative side effects were mostly reversible by the provision of 15 mg/100 ml tryptophan in the drinking water of the rodents, but were not alleviated by  the administration of the common serotonine reuptake inhibitor fluoxetine (at 10 mg/kg/day for four weeks).

            Bottom line: Isolation is not what you want if what your body has been build for is complex food. And while the single serving of BCAAs you may gulp down during or right before a workout, on the other hand, probably isn't going to harm you. The "I need BCAAs every 30min" approach to gaining muscle mass, may well turn you into a psychotic wrack if you follow it day in and day out for months or years - at least without chronically adding some l-tryptophan to the equation.

          • Sweet tea leaves protect against obesity: Once more via PPAR-gamma blockade (Zhou. 2012) -- Actually this is probably not news to anyone out there with a degree in Traditional Chinese medicine. After all, Lithocarpus polystachyus Rehd.(Sweet Tea) is Chinese folkloric medicine that has always been used to treat obesity, diabetes, and hypertension in South China:
            "Previous experiments revealed that it contains plentiful bioactive flavonoids and polyphenolic compounds, e.g. phlorizin, trilobatin, 3-hydroxy-phlorizin, etc. These components have extensive pharmacological activities, such as anti-diabetes, memory improvement, anti-aging, inhibition of lipid peroxidation and the growth of human colon cancer cells, and so on." (Zhang. 2012)
            From a "scientific" perspective, however, the efficacy of this herbal medicine as an obesity treatment had still to be elucidated.
            Figure 4: Effects of oral gavage of 75 mg, 150 mg and 300 mg/kg of body weight/day of sweet tea extract or placebo (DIO) in conjunction with the 8 weeks on a obesogenic diet (Zhang. 2012)
            In this context it is yet worth mentioning that this study demonstrated for the first time that the aqueous dry leaves extract of Lithocarpus polystachyus Rehd. can potently reduce the worst metabolic side effects of obesity, such as the hypolipidemia, hypoleptinaemia and the degree of insulin resistance (FINS, HOMA-IR, cf. figure 3) what it does not answer, however, is whether the decline in PPAR-gamma is tissue specific, what exactly is behind the profound decline in leptin levels and whether or not lean rodents, let alone humans, who don't consume an obesogenic diet will see anywhere similar benefits.

            In other words, this is research in progress, but I suppose something you are going to hear more about at the Supppversity in 2013.
          * * * * * *

          Apropos hearing or rather reading more, I guess you will realize that you have reached the end of today's installment of On Short Notice which means that you will have to progress to the SuppVersity Facebook Wall if you want a second serving of news on...
          • The history of vitamin A as a light sensor and beyond - actually a free full-text I guess those of you who like to "think paleo" may enjoy (read more)
          • A paper on "good" and "bad" inflammation, where the author points out that soothing inflammation too much can lead to a reduction in energy expenditure and may therefore not be the king's road to getting rid of the last blubber (read more)
          • The food-hitlist of young Americans - Featuring sugar, sugary drinks, sugary bakery, sugary ... as their main energy and carbohydrate sources... (read more)
          • Problems with synthroid and generics that have surfaced in a recent study on their efficacy in the treatment of congenital hypothyrodism (read more)
          as well as a handful of other news, which are already there or are going to be posted within the next hours. Have a great weekend, everyone! 

          • Coppola A, Wenner BR, Ilkayeva O, Stevens RD, Maggioni M, Slotkin TA, Levin ED, Newgard CB. Branched-chain amino acids alter neurobehavioral function in rats. Am J Physiol Endocrinol Metab. 2012 Dec 18.
          • Li H, Wang Y, Zhang H, Jia B, Wang D, et al. Yohimbine Enhances Protection of Berberine against LPS-Induced Mouse Lethality through Multiple Mechanisms. PLoS ONE. 2012; 7(12): e52863. 
          • Zhou CJ, Huang S, Liu JQ, Qiu SQ, Xie FY, Song HP, Li YS, Hou SZ, Lai XP. Sweet tea leaves extract improves leptin resistance in diet-induced obese rats. J Ethnopharmacol. 2013 Jan 9;145(1):386-92.

          Review for Monster Energy Dub Edition--Mad Dog


          160 mg


          This particular can isn’t so easy to find, but it is (spoiler alert) just a repackaging of an already existing Monster Energy beverage—which I am reviewing simply because there are people out there who will seek a review on it, and I think they deserve one.


          Purple, gold, and a design that’s sort of a cross between the original Dub Edition and Import cans—it’s an impressive effect.  My issues here are the same with my issues with the Baller’s Blend can—the cursive and boxing glove just don’t seem to work, and I find the term “Punch + Energy” to be misleading—this isn’t punchy at all.


          To elaborate on my earlier statement that this is a repackaging of an already existing Monster beverage—this drink is the same as what we knew as “Monster Energy—Dub Edition.”  Apparently Monster’s decided to make the whole ‘Dub Edition’ thing a line as opposed to a flavor—kind of in the same way Nitrous and Rehab are lines as opposed to flavors—and rereleased the original as ‘Mad Dog’ (which I don’t really get).  I was not at all fond of Dub Edition the first time I tried it; I found it to be so sweet as to be sickening.  This time, however, I had it over ice, and that seemed to make it a bit more bearable—though I’m still not terribly impressed with the “original Monster with a hint of grape” flavor.

          KICK (INTENSITY)—8

          Another difference I found with this beverage is that it worked—which I don’t think discredits the original Dub Edition.  I’ve found, as I’ve reviewed beverage after beverage after beverage, that sometimes flukes happen.  A drink will work better or worse than the rest of the line even though there is really no difference in the energy blend, or will crap out long before others of the line have—that sort of thing.  They’ve become far less common as time has gone on, but in the rare instance when they do happen, I make it a point to drink them twice before I post a review.

          That being said—I think my review of the original Dub Edition was a fluke.  It’s got all the caffeine of all the other Monster beverages and all of the other energy constituents, and there’s no reason it should have kicked less than the other beverages.  If you drink this new Mad Dog beverage, expect a decent amount of energy and some jitters.  Also expect the sugariness to give you a few troubles.

          KICK (DURATION)—8

          Three and a half hours, with no sugar crash—though that last part might have been the fact that I was on an exercise bike for an hour after the fact just to make sure I burned off all that dang sugar.

          THE DRINK OVERALL—7.33

          Lovers of the original Dub Edition, rejoice!  Your drink has not been discontinued, just repackaged and renamed.  You can still enjoy your grapey Monster every bit as much as you did before.  To those that never had Dub Edition—Monster beverages are good for a decent boost, but I vastly prefer some of their other flavors; Cuba Lima and Rehab—Lemonade, Orangeade, and Rojo Tea are some of my all-time favorites.  I’d go with one of those before this, but that’s just me.

          KEYWORDS: Monster Energy Dub Edition Mad Dog review, Red Bull clone, traditional energy drink flavor

          Review for Monster Energy Dub Edition--Baller's Blend


          160 mg


          Monster’s been pretty scanty as far as getting this one out there is concerned.  Though it came out at the same time as Cuba Lima and Zero Ultra it got none of the publicity, and I only became aware of its existence through other reviewers.  For the time being, count on having a harder time than usual getting your hands on this one.


          If nothing else, Monster knows how to make a flashy can—take a look at this red, black and gold…bling and tell me if I’m wrong.  I have a few issues with this one, such as the cursive “Baller’s Blend” and the boxing glove, which seem strange and out of place in context with the overall motif.


          With “Fruit + Punch” featured prominently on the front, I have a pretty good idea what to expect—it was only a matter of time before Monster decided to cash in on the crap fruit punch flavor.  Popping the top I get the expected smell (and a lack of carbonation, funnily enough—anyone else have that experience?)—except maybe a little more complex; I seem to have detected whiffs of mango and cherry in there, as opposed to just the usual ambiguous fruity smell.  Taking a sip, I found the flavor to be more on the fruity side than most punches, which I found to make it more agreeable than most—though I’m still not a fan of the flavor, fruit punch aficionados will doubtless love it.

          KICK (INTENSITY)—8

          If you have found in times past that Monster Energy products have worked for you, you will find that this one will also.  If not, then not.  I find that more often than not effects are on the high end of average (with the exception of the original, for whatever freaking reason that has eluded my reasoning), and this one was no different.

          KICK (DURATION)—8

          I got a pretty solid three and a half hours of energy out of this, which I actually found to be quite helpful as I embarked on a cleaning/sorting crusade (an added bonus is that this burst of energy helped me burn off the crap ton of sugar I got with this drink).

          THE DRINK OVERALL—7.67

          Like fruit punch?  Like Monster?  You’ll like this drink.  Nothing more to say than that.

          KEYWORDS: Monster Energy Dub Edition Baller’s Blend review, Monster fruit punch

          Science Round-Up Seconds: 8 Nootropics to Combat Stroke, Alheimer's & Co and Boost Cognitive Performance. Plus: 7 Rarely Thought of Side Effects of High Dose Glutamine.

          Effects of infusion times on phenol content of black tea (Ramalho. 2012)
          If you have already listened to the podcast of yesterday's Science Round-Up on the Super Human Radio Website (click here if you haven't and wan't to know what the following is all about), I suppose you will not mind that I compiled some of the complex information about "optimal" tea brewing in the illustration to the right (based on Ramalho. 2012). The colored arrows indicate the time-points at which the given compounds in the tea achieved peak values. The exact time point is also given in minutes, so that a 9' in front of the green caffeine and on the left to the green arrow pointing at the 9 min point tells you "it took 9 minutes for the caffeine content to reach it's maximum in the British tea". The graph in the background shows the catechin concentration depending on the infusion time.

          Cholinergenic nootropics - What a recent review says

          I guess some of you will probably have heard about piracetam or lecithine as purported enhancers of cognitive function. According to a recent review in the Journal of Experimental Pharmacology those two are yet not the most prosing agents:
            Eggs are rich in choline which is an essential nutrient and was abundant in the classic BB diets (rear more)
          • Piracetam: no cerebroprotective effects in patients who have open heart surgery, but does help on non-open cardiopulmonary bypass surgery (Holinski. 2008), beneficial effects in response to cerbrovascular and cognitive disorders traumatic origin (Malykh. 2010), intravenous piracetam can prevent cognitive deficits in response to anesthesia (Fesenko. 2009)
          • Lecitin: does not improve cognitive deficits in patients (Amenta. 2011; Parnetti. 2007)
          More promising "nootropics" - specifically in view of what most people do actually expect, when they buy such products.
          • Oxiracetam: improves cognitive performance except for patients with dementia (Malykh. 2010)
          • Citocoline: general neuroprotective effects (Alvares-Sabin. 2011), improvements in cognitive performance in healthy and patients and patients with dementia (Secades. 2010), helps with cognitive dysfunction in Parkinson's (Vale. 2008), helps with cognitive function in dementia of neurodegenerative and vascular origin (Parnetti. 2007), prevents cognitive decline after a stroke (Alvarez. 2011), improves recovery after stroke (Garcia-Cobos. 2010) 
          • Cerebrolysine: produces signifant cognitive improvements in vascular dementia (Guekht. 2011), effective for both cognitive function and behavioral symptoms in Alzheimer's (Alvarez. 2011), promising results in patients with Alzheimer's (Plosker. 2009)
          And a couple of things you would not usually associate with nootropics:
          • Suggested read: Amino Acids for Super Humans on the effects and differences between the various forms of carnitine (read more).
            Acetyl-L-carnitine: improves cognitive performance in patients with encephalopathy, decreases anxiety and increases general energy and wellness, as well as fatigue and age-related cognitive deficits (Malaguernera. 2008, Liu. 2008),can reduce or block neuronal death in neurodegenerative diseases (Manusco. 2007), helps ammeliorate hyperammonemia (Cagnon. 2007)
          • Saffron extract: beneficial effects in mild to modest Alzheimer's  (Akhondzadeh. 2010)
          • DHA (fish oil): positive effects on verbal recognition memory in old subjects (Yurko-Mauro. 2010)
          Interestingly, the most profound effects appear to be brought about by acetyl-l-carnitine. In that it's worth mentioning that the benefits could still be related to cholinergic mechanisms, since it has long been known that ALCAR can increase the expression of choline acetyltransferase activity in the central nervous system (Taglialatela. 1994). And the latter is, as the name implies, necessary to form the neurotransmitter acetylcholine .

            Glutamine probably not suitable for chronic high dose supplementation

            Czech scientists warn about the risks of chronic high dose glutamine supplementation. I know that many of you are still too bamboozeled by the "protein for everything and let the liver take care of any glucose demands I may have" theory, of which you could probably argue that it is the bastard child of the standard BB diet with low carb. Maybe the following recently published paper by a scientist from the Charles University in Prague can help cure this "disease" (and your cognitive problems, fatigue and brainfog).

            According to Holecek, the chronic ingestion of glutamine / glutamine enriched diets in can lead to...
            Figure 1: In the presence of high amounts of glutamine outside of the cell, the glutamine synthesis (GLN) and with it the ammonia detoxification from muscle tissue sucks (Holecek. 2012).
            "(1) Alterations in amino acid transport-as GLN shares the transporters with other amino acids, enhanced GLN intake may impair amino acid distribution among tissues and their absorption in the gut and kidneys.

            (2) Alterations in GLN metabolism-GLN supplementation may impair synthesis of endogenous GLN and enhance glutamate and ammonia production.

            (3) Alterations in ammonia transport-GLN supplementation may impair ammonia detoxification and negatively affect the role of GLN as the carrier of ammonia among tissues.

            (4) Abnormalities in aminoacidemia-increased plasma levels of GLN, glutamate, citrulline, ornithine, arginine, and histidine and decreased levels of valine, leucine, isoleucine, glycine, threonine, serine, and proline are reported.

            (5) Alterations in immune system-as GLN has immunomodulating properties, the effect of chronic GLN consumption on the immune system needs to be assessed.

            (6) Effect on tumor growth-it should be elucidated whether chronic intake of GLN increases the risk of cancer.

            (7) Effect of the withdrawal of GLN supplementation-due to the adaptive response of the organism to enhanced GLN consumption, the withdrawal of GLN may enhance the risk of health problems resulting from GLN deficiency." (Holecek. 2012)
            Remember the post on the ammonia induced peripheral and central fatigue with high dose chronic BCAAs supplementation?
            In view of the fact that some people consumer up to 40g of glutamine regularly, Holecek demands that "long-term studies should be performed" to test the side effects and evaluate whether there is any benefit at all to justify chronic consumption of a GLN-enriched diet.

            So, relying on glutamine instead of carbs, as smart as this idea appears to be in the current carbophobia, could actually make you stupid due to the disruption of the intracellular ammonia detoxification, which is not a problem in muscle only, but also in the brain.

            In the end, what we are seeing here is just another instance of a disruption in the natural balance of things. Ornithine, citrulline and arginine, for example are involved in the detoxification of ammonia via the urea cycle. They are however not the only bottleneck to the system.

            Obviously your liver and kidneys will have to handle the clearance. People with liver problems (or persons taking "supplements" or NSAIDs that may impair the liver function) are therefore particularly prone to hyperammonemic encephalopathy (Kanamori. 1996; Lemberg. 2009)

            Bottom line: Glutamine, just like everything else, in moderation and by no means so much that your body runs on glutamine as fuel. Aside from the mentioned amino acids that help the clearance of ammonia from the blood stream, taurine appears to exert a direct protective affect in the brain (Chepkova. 2006), and lactulose (a fermentable carbohydrate) can reduce the ammonia influx from ammonia producing bacteria in the gut (Vince. 1980). So if you want to wear a helmet when you bang your head against the wall, these would be suggested "take supplement B in order to counter the side effects of supplement A" - side effects of a supplement you would not even have to take, by the way (100% bro-logic ;-)

            • Amenta F, Carotenuto A, Fasanaro G, Lanari A, Rea R, Traini E. Preliminary results of Ascomalva trial on the association of donepezil and choline alphoscerate in Alzheimer’s disease with associated cere-brovascular injury. G Gerontol. 2011;59:89–9.
            • Akhondzadeh S, Shaf iee Sabet M, Harirchian MH, Togha M. A 22-week, multicenter, randomized, double-blind controlled trial of Crocus sativusin the treatment of mild-to-moderate Alzheimer’s disease. Psychopharmacology (Berl). 2010;207:637–643.
            • Alvarez XA, Cacabelos R, Sampedro C, et al. Efficacy and safety of cerebrolysin in moderate to moderately severe Alzheimer’s disease: results of a randomized, double-blind, controlled trial investigating three dosages of cerebrolysin. Eur J Neurol. 2011;18: 59–68.
            • Alvarez-Sabín J, Román GC. Citicoline in vascular cognitive impair-ment and vascular dementia after stroke. Stroke. 2011;42(Suppl 1): S40–S43.
            • Cagnon L, Braissant O. Hyperammonemia-induced toxicity for the devel-oping central nervous system. Brain Res Rev. 2007;56:183–197.
            • Chepkova AN, Sergeeva OA, Haas HL. Taurine rescues hippocampal long-term potentiation from ammonia-induced impairment. Neurobiol Dis. 2006 Sep;23(3):512-21.
            • Fesenko UA. Piracetam improves children’s memory after general anaesthesia. Anestezjol Intens Ter. 2009;41:16–21. Polish
            • García-Cobos R, Frank-García A, Gutiérrez-Fernández M, Díez-Tejedor E. Citicoline, use in cognitive decline: vascular and degenerative. J Neurol Sci. 2010;299:188–192.
            • Guekht AB, Moessler H, Novak PH, Gusev EI; Cerebrolysin Investigators. Cerebrolysin in vascular dementia: improvement of clinical outcome in a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled multicenter trial. J Stroke Cerebrovasc Dis. 2011;20:310–318. 
            • Holecek M. Side Effects of Long-term Glutamine Supplementation. JPEN J Parenter Enteral Nutr. 2012 Sep 18.
            • Holinski S, Claus B, Alaaraj N, et al. Cerebroprotective effect of piracetam in patients undergoing coronary bypass surgery. Med Sci Monit. 2008;14:153–15.
            • Kanamori K, Ross BD, Chung JC, Kuo EL. Severity of hyperammonemic encephalopathy correlates with brain ammonia level and saturation of glutamine synthetase in vivo. J Neurochem. 1996 Oct;67(4):1584-94.
            • Lemberg A, Fernández MA. Hepatic encephalopathy, ammonia, glutamate, glutamine and oxidative stress. Ann Hepatol. 2009 Apr-Jun;8(2):95-102.
            • Liu J. The effects and mechanisms of mitochondrial nutrient alpha-lipoic acid on improving age-associated mitochondrial and cognitive dysfunction: an overview. Neurochem Res. 2008;33:194–203.
            • Mancuso C, Bates TE, Butterfield DA, et al. Natural antioxidants in Alzheimer’s disease. Expert Opin Investig Drugs. 2007;16:1921–1931.
            • Malaguarnera M, Gargante MP, Cristaldi E, et al. Acetyl L-carnitine (ALC) treatment in elderly patients with fatigue. Arch Gerontol Geriatr. 2008;46:181–19
            • Malaguarnera M, Gargante MP, Cristaldi E, et al. Acetyl-L-carnitine treatment in minimal hepatic encephalopathy. Dig Dis Sci. 2008;53: 3018–3025
            • Malykh AG, Sadaie MR. Piracetam and piracetam-like drugs: from basic science to novel clinical applications to CNS disorders. Drugs. 2010;70:287–31
            • Pantoni L. Treatment of vascular dementia: evidence from trials with non-cholinergic drugs. J Neurol Sci. 2004;226:67–70
            • Parnetti L, Mignini F, Tomassoni D, Traini E, Amenta F.  Cholinergic precursors in the treatment of cognitive impairment of vascular origin: ineffective approaches or need for re-evaluation? J Neurol Sci. 2007;257:264–269.
            • Ramalho SA, Nigam N, Oliveira GB, Alves de Oliveira P, Matos Silva TO, Passos dos Santos AG, Narain N. Effect of infusion time on phenolic compounds and caffeine content in black tea  Food Research International; 13 December 2012 [ahead of print]
            • Secades JJ. Citicoline: pharmacological and clinical review. Rev Neurol. 2010;52 Suppl 2:S1–S62.
            • Vale S. Current management of the cognitive dysfunction in Parkinson’s disease: how far have we come? Exp Biol Med (Maywood). 2008;233:941–951.
            • Vince AJ, Burridge SM. Ammonia production by intestinal bacteria: the effects of lactose, lactulose and glucose. J Med Microbiol. 1980 May;13(2):177-91.
            • Yurko-Mauro K. Cognitive and cardiovascular benefits of docosahexaenoic acid in aging and cognitive decline. Curr Alzheimer Res. 2010;7:190–196.