The Thought Behind Our Ingredients
At Genesis Foods, we believe that the quality of the ingredients is one of the most important things about meal replacements. We refuse to add maltodextrin/oil powders as primary calorie sources due to their high glycemic index (GI), which is often higher than actual sugar. We aim for all of our products to have the lowest GI possible, as well as contain vitamins and minerals in the most optimal amounts and forms.
We use a range of different ingredients in our products. This page explains each ingredient's purpose, as well as nutritional information.
Protein: Whey, Soy Or Rice?
Different flavours of KetoGenesis contain different types of protein, and these have all been carefully chosen for the benefits they bring.
Whey concentrate is derived from whey (a liquid left behind after milk has been curdled and strained), and typically has ~80 grams of protein per 100 grams.
Whey concentrate is found in our standard and premium ranges, composing 100% of the protein in them.
Whey is a complete protein, meaning it contains all nine of the essential amino acids. It is also very easy to digest, scoring a perfect score of 1 on the Protein Digestibility Corrected Amino Acid Score (PDCAAS) scale. Aside from simply providing all of the amino acids you need in an easily digestible form, whey also has many other benefits. Whey has been shown to reduce the release of ghrelin - a hormone that tells your brain you are hungry - for up to four hours, as well as improving muscular endurance and increasing protein synthesis in those who consume it. Whey protein also helps to control blood sugar levels, which is extremely beneficial for those who suffer from diabetes or for those who wish to follow a ketogenic diet.
Unlike whey and casein, soy protein is suitable for vegans. Soy protein is quite commonly produced from genetically modified soy beans, and whilst, as a company, we have no issues with GMOs and believe they are extremely harmless, we have chosen to use a non-GMO soy protein so people who do have issues with GMOs are still able to use our products. We use a soy isolate which contains ~90 grams of protein per 100 grams.
Soy isolate is found in our standard and vegan ranges, composing 30% of the protein in our standard flavours, and 100% of the protein in our vegan flavours.
Like whey and casein, soy is a complete protein, and also scores the highest PDCAAS score of any vegan protein - 0.91. Whilst some people worry about the effect soy products can have on thyroid function (and hence hormone levels), study after study shows this is not something to worry about. In fact, soy isoflavones have been shown to reduce cancer risk, and soy products in general seem to reduce cholesterol. For more information on the benefits of soy protein, as well as to see some studies showing no association with soy intake and an effect on hormone levels, please see the breakdown on this page.
Rice protein is another protein that is suitable for vegans. Whilst there is no issue with soy consumption for the majority of people, some people are allergic or intolerant to soy. Rice protein, to the contrary, is considered hypoallergenic, so is a good option for vegans who are allergic to soy. The rice protein we use contains 88.7 grams of protein per 100 grams.
Rice protein is found in our hypoallergenic range, composing 100% of the protein in these flavours.
Unlike the other proteins listed, rice protein has a comparitiviely low PDCAAS score of 0.5. This is primarily due to the fact that rice protein is quite low in the amino acid lysine. However, the amount of rice protein we use in our hypoallergenic range is enough to provide well over the RDA of lysine set by the World Health Organisation. All amino acid data for all of our flavours, along with these RDAs, can be seen here.
Fibre And Thickeners
Gum arabic is a gum formed of the hardened sap of acacia trees. It has varying fibre contents depending on the source, but the one in KetoGenesis has a fibre content of 92% and no net carbs, making it a perfect choice for a ketogenic diet. Its high solubility also means it works very well in a meal replacement shake due to its lack of effect on texture.
Gum arabic demonstrates prebiotic properties (it nourishes and promotes the growth of beneficial bacteria in the intestines) and is well tolerated in people of all ages. It also ferments into short-chain fatty acids (SCFAs) in the colon, which provide a keto-friendly source of energy.
Xanthan gum is obtained by fermenting glucose, sucrose or lactose with a bacterium called Xanthomonas campestris. We primarily include xanthan gum in our recipes as a thickener, but it is also very high in fibre (~80 grams of fibre per 100 grams).
In addition to its thickening properties, xanthan gum exhibits emulsifying properties, allowing oils mixed with KetoGenesis to mix more thoroughly. Its thickening properties have been shown to limit blood sugar spikes when it is mixed with fruit juice (see here), and a study in mice conducted in 2009 showed xanthan gum may exhibit anticancer properties (see here).
Vitamins And Minerals
Vitamins and minerals are a fundamental part of any meal replacement, and yet some other companies use forms that are not easily absorbed, such as magnesium oxide or other inorganic forms which are absorbed poorly relative to organic forms.
We take a lot of pride in our micronutrient mix, and have worked to improve it extensively over time. Not only do we target micronutrient quantities above the RDA that have demonstrated beneficial effects, but we aim to use the most bioavailable forms available to maximise absorption.
The full contents of our micronutrient mix can be seen here, but some of the key features are detailed below.
As a general rule, with vitamins that have more than one form and both can be beneficial to health, we have included both. In some cases this can provide synergistic effects, whilst in others it can minimise the risk of toxicity. Examples of these include:
Unlike other companies which generally only use one form of vitamin A, we include both beta carotene and retinyl palmitate in our mix. Retinyl palmitate is considered more biologically active, but also contributes to the 10000 I.U. Upper Tolerable Limit, whilst beta carotene does not. As such, we have included 3000 I.U. (the highest modern day recommendation) of both beta carotene and retinyl palmitate, providing a total intake of 6000 I.U. per day.
High doses of vitamin B12 have been shown to be very safe, and as a result, no Upper Tolerable Limit has been formed. Generally, multivitamins and meal replacement companies opt to only use cyanocobalamin, and only enough to hit 100% RDA. However, people with an MTHFR mutation - which prevents cyanocobalamin being converted into a form the body can use - will not be able to properly absorb this form, and as such can easily become deficient in B12. As such, we have included 6 micrograms of methylcobalamin (in addition to the daily 12 micrograms of cyanocobalamin) in our recipes. So why do we not just include methylcobalamin in an increased quantity? There are a number of reasons for this. Firstly, cyanocobalamin has been researched a lot more than methylcobalamin, so we can be more sure of its safety in very large quantities. Secondly, continuous use of high-dose methylcobalamin can cause some minor but unpleasant side effects, such as an itchy rash. For these reasons, we decided to have a generous serving of methylcobalamin, but to top it up even further with some cyanocobalamin too. Some people worry about cyanocobalamin intake due to the fact that it has a cyanide chain - however the amount of cyanide involved in doses of cyanocobalamin is so small it has no effect whatsoever on the body, much like the cyanide in apple seeds. If you'd like to read more about this topic, please see here.
Much like with vitamin B12, there are two forms of folate (vitamin B9) that we can use - l-methylfolate (or l-methyltetrahydrofolate calcium) and folic acid. Those with the MTHFR mutation are limited in how much folic acid they can convert to folate, as this requires methylation, and yet a lot of companies use pure folic acid. We decided to include enough l-methylfolate to prevent deficiencies - 200 micrograms - and top this up with folic acid - another 200 micrograms - for a higher intake level (which is still well below the Upper Tolerable Limit). Why not include pure l-methylfolate? There are two reasons for this: firstly, l-methylfolate costs a lot more than folic acid (~1000x the price), and secondly, as is the case with beta carotene, folic acid counts less towards the Upper Tolerable Limit than l-methylfolate does, as it must be converted into l-methylfolate in the liver. By having the mix we do, we ensure everyone's needs are met, while not risking toxicity.
There are two forms of vitamin D we can use - ergocalciferol (vitamin D2) and cholecalciferol (vitamin D3). Vitamin D3 is obtained from dairy products, sheep wool and exposure to sunlight, whilst vitamin D2 is obtained from mushrooms and other plants. There is also a comparably expensive (but still reasonably cheap) source of vegan vitamin D3 from lichen. Vitamin D3 is considered better for raising vitamin D levels in the body than vitamin D2, though the extent of this varies from study to study. Some studies show a similar increase in vitamin D levels in the body for both forms, but with a quicker drop in levels once supplementation stops for the D2 form. Similar to vitamin A and folate, vitamin D3 is thought to contribute more to the Upper Tolerable Limit than vitamin D2, and because of this, we have decided to err on the side of caution. The E.U. RDA is only 200 I.U., but this is widely regarded to be far too low, with the US and Canadian recommendations being the much higher 800 I.U. which is more appropriate. We've included a generous 3000 I.U. of total vitamin D (which fulfils an optimal 2:1 - 2.5:1 vitamin A to vitamin D ratio when both are taken in International Units). Of this 3000 I.U, 80% (2400 I.U.) is in the form of vitamin D2, whilst 20% (600 I.U.) is in the form of vegan vitamin D3 (from lichen).
There are two forms of vitamin K we can use - phytonadione (vitamin K1) and menaquinone-7 (vitamin K2). Vitamin K1 is found in many plant foods, whilst pre-formed vitamin K2 is reasonably rare in plants. However, much like xanthan gum, certain bacteria can ferment plants which leads to them containing vitamin K2. Both vitamin K1 and vitamin K2 have slightly different benefits, which is why we have decided to include both forms in our recipes. The benefits of these two vitamins are numerous but for those interested, this page has a good breakdown of some of the benefits, including which of the two vitamins these benefits came from. Based on the numerous benefits of both forms, we have included 160 micrograms of vitamin K1 and 80 micrograms of vitamin K2.
With minerals, there are often many different forms they can come in. These are either organic (which means they are bound to a chain that contains both carbon and hydrogen) or inorganic (which means they are bound to a chain that does not contain both carbon and hydrogen). Organic molecules are almost always absorbed better than inorganic ones.
Certain organic molecules are absorbed better than others, and one of the best ways to increase the bioavailability of a mineral is to chelate it. Chelation (in terms of nutrition) is when a mineral is reacted with one or more amino acids to form a complex.
Ordinarily when a mineral is consumed, it is bonded to amino acids in the stomach to aid absorption, as to be absorbed, the mineral complex must not have an electronic charge (whilst isolated minerals do). During this stage, certain minerals compete for amino acids, which is why generally, consuming iron at the same time as calcium is considered a bad idea, as they inhbit each other's absorption. Antinutrients - such as phytic acid - also compete for these amino acids, which is why they can inhibit the absorption of some minerals.
By chelating a mineral to an amino acid prior to consumption, this entire step is skipped out. This hugely decreases the competition between minerals, as well as nullifying the effect of antinutrients, leading to a vastly improved bioavailability.
In our micronutrient mix, we have aimed to use chelated minerals wherever it is possible. Generally we opt for minerals bound to glycine molecules (bisglycinates) due to the beneficial effects of glycine on sleep and muscle relaxation, but for some minerals, we have used alternatives, such as methionine, picolinic acid and gluconic acid. Where it is not feasible to use chelates, either for health or cost reasons, we have used the best available alternatives (such as pink Himalayan salt for sodium and chloride).
Our Nutrition Facts
We want to provide as much information about our nutrition as possible. Here is a link to a detailed table about a range of recommended daily values, as well as what is in our shake.
We would include this information on our site directly, but there is a lot in the table and we didn't want to exclude any of the details.