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Now that both ephedrine and DMAA have been banned, manufacturers have been scrambling to find an ingredient that is safe and effective replacements for these two stimulants for use in fat burners. Gaspari Nutrition’s Detonate may have found the solution, with their secret weapon, dendrobium extract. Few manufacturers have a fat burner formula similar to Detonate, so does this mean that Gaspari are revolutionary, or have they simply put in something that no-one else wants?

Detonate Ingredients

Detonate has a combination of eight impressive ingredients, some of which are fairly proven and oldschool, while others are cutting edge.

  • Dendrobium extract: Probably first popularised by the hugely effective concentrated pre workout supplement, Driven Sports Craze, dendrobium has been picked up by Gaspari for use in this fat burner. In this context, dendrobium was picked for its potential ability to stimulate the central nervous system (Chen & Chen, 1935) and increase metabolism.
  • B-Phenylethylamine (or PEA): A feel good compound that not only helps to elevate mood (Paterson, 1993) but can also provide a stimulant effect (Parker & Cubeddu, 1988).
  • Tangerine extract: Another rather unique addition, tangerine extract contains a compound which has been found to have protective effects against obesity (Mulvihill et al, 2011).
  • Caffeine anhydrous: Definitely one of the more oldschool thermogenics to help with increased metabolism and fat burning. The effects of caffeine could be more potent when combined with the above ingredients.
  • Green tea extract: A truly wonderful substance that has countless benefits for weight loss and general health. Studies have shown that green tea can significantly increase the rate of weight loss (Nagao et al, 2005) and even block fat and carbohydrate digestion (Wang et al, 2010).
  • Green coffee extract: One of the more modern fat loss aid, it is still not known exactly how green coffee helps with weight and fat loss. But what is known is that it seems to work (Onakpoya et al, 2011).
  • Asian ginseng: A traditional oriental herb used not so much directly for fat loss, but studies show it helps to improve mental (Carr 1986) and physical (Forgo & Kirchdorfer, 1982) performance, especially in stressful periods, such as those under taking strict diets.
  • BioPerine: A black pepper extract that is the perfect addition to this product. BioPerine has been proven to assist in the absorption and utilisation of many different nutrients and drugs (Han, 2011) and can help make the most of the above ingredients. In addition, it has some thermogenic properties of its own (Malini et al, 1999).

Detonate Effectiveness

After the first dose, Detonate provides a fairly fast hit of energy. There is no crash, jitteriness, or any other such side effects, probably thanks to the absence of DMAA and the relatively low caffeine dose. Over the longer term, Detonate reviews extremely well in its ability to help increase the amount of weight lost when combined with diet and exercise. Overall it’s an effective fat burner.

Detonate Taste & Mixability

Currently, detonate is only available in pill form.

Detonate Pros

Detonate is a fairly concentrated product, with only a small capsule being needed per dose. Overall, it provides a good selection of well-rounded ingredients to attack fat loss from multiple angles. Although dendrobium is the primary selling point of the product, this reviewer applauds the inclusion of green coffee extract, which is growing in support for its fat loss potential.

Another major selling point for the product is that it has apparently been clinically tested for effectiveness and safety. This is a rare claim for fat burning products, as many find their way into the market place without being properly tested.

Finally, experience users of fat burners here in Australia would be more than familiar with our unique legislations for what is and is not legal to include in a supplement. This means that many of the popular American fat burners need reformulation before they can be sold here. Ultimately, this could mean that despite being initially well researched and well reviewed, by the time it makes it to Australian shores, it could actually be a completely different product. Not so with Detonate, because it contains nothing that is banned in Australia. In other words, the Detonate available in Australia is exactly as good as Gaspari has originally intended.

Detonate Cons

The most annoying thing about the product is the use of a proprietary blend. When it comes to fat burners, ingredients mean nothing if it is under-dosed. Detonate has extremely poor label transparency and it is difficult to make judgements about whether the product is well dosed or not. In fact, by looking at the bottle, it is impossible to tell exactly how much caffeine is even in the product. An educated guess would be that it is around 100 to 150 mg/cap. However, given that the product does appear to be effective, it is more likely than not, that the dosages are at least decent.

Another annoyance is that the marketing for the product always alludes to the fact that the product has been clinically tested. Yet Gaspari make no efforts in providing details on the studies and whether or not it has been published. Even after an internet search I was no closer to tracking down any more information.

Detonate Verdict

Despite some flaws in the marketing and packaging of the product, this reviewer is still impressed with Gaspari Nutrition Detonate. Its choice of ingredients are not only unique, but also effective in provide an energy boost as well as helping to increase fat burn. Given the success of this product, you can expect to see dendrobium finding its way into the formulations of many competing brands. If you are a fan of fat burners, have tried quite a few, and find they are pretty much all the same, give Detonate’s formulation a try. You could be pleasantly surprised.

Carr (1986). Natural plant products that enhance performance and endurance. In: Carr CJ, Jokl E, eds. Enhancers of performance and endurance. Hillsdale, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, 138–92.
Chen & Chen (1935), The pharmacological action of dendrobine. The alkaloid of Chin-Shih-Hu. JPET, 55: 319-325
Forgo & Kirchdorfer (1982), The effect of different ginsenoside concentrations on physical work capacity. Notabene Med, 12: 721–727
Han (2011), The effects of black pepper on the intestinal absorption and hepatic metabolism of drugs. Expert Opin Drug Metab Toxicol, 7: 721-729
Malini et al (1999), Effects of piperine on the lipid composition and enzymes of the pyruvate-malate cycle in the testis of the rat in vivo. Biochem Mol Biol Int, 47: 537-545
Mulvihill et al (2011), Nobiletin Attenuates VLDL Overproduction, Dyslipidemia, and Atherosclerosis in Mice With Diet-Induced Insulin Resistance. Diabetes, 5: 1446-1457
Nagao et al (2005), Ingestion of a tea rich in catechins leads to a reduction in body fat and malondialdehyde-modified LDL in men. Am J Clinc Nutr, 81: 122-129
Onakpoya et al (2011), The use of green coffee extract as a weight loss supplement: a systematic review and meta-analysis of randomised clinical trials. Gastroenterol Res Pract, doi:10.1155/2011/382852
Parker & Cubeddu (1988), Comparative effects of amphetamine, phenylethylamine and related drugs on dopamine efflux, dopamine uptake and mazindol binding. JPET, 245: 199-210
Paterson (1993), The potentiation of cortical neuron responses to noradrenaline by 2-phenylethylamine is independent of endogenous noradrenaline. Neurochemical Research, 18: 1329-1336
Wang et al (2010), Sugar compositions, α-glucosidase inhibitory and amylase inhibitory activities of polysaccharides from leaves and flowers of Camellia sinensis obtained by different extraction methods. Int J Biol Macromol, 4: 534-539

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