Hydro-Iso Performance – The science behind the shake

Fission Nutrition: Product Spotlight: Hydro-iso Performance

Hydro-Iso Performance is an evolution of the traditional protein shake, it contains 50% whey isolate and 50% whey hydrolyses. Although this combination might but nothing new, the detail is in the amount of each form of whey protein. Many companies may include whey hydrolyses in tiny amounts simply so they can state it contains the ‘gold standard’ form of whey protein on the label, despite not containing enough to make a physiological difference to performance or recovery, this is obviously very misleading to the consumer as they may be paying a premium prize for an inferior product.

Hydro-iso Performance is different due to using an equal amount of high quality whey isolate and whey. Whey protein is a staple of many peoples supplement stack, and rightly so due to it being a nutritional power house for many reasons ranging from health to performance Whey protein is the fast digesting component of milk proteins and releases it’s a rate of 8 to 10 grams per hour (1), this means that its amino acids are digested and released into the blood stream quickly causing a peak in amino acids which makes it ideal to have before and after exercise as a way of ensuring that the working muscles have:-

 Sufficient amino acids available during exercise to limit muscle breakdown.
 Provides amino acids after exercise when muscle fibres are more sensitive to their anabolic

actions allow improved recovery (2)

Whey protein contains high amounts of the amino acid Leucine, which plays a significant role in the anabolic processes in the body (i.e helping to build muscle). This is important as we get older as a state of anabolic resistance occurs, this means that it is harder to build muscle as we age and easier to lose muscle, as a result more protein / Leucine is required to allow the body to deal with the daily turnover of new and old muscle tissue (3). This makes whey protein ideal for supplying the important amino acids required by the body. Although it’s important to note that all proteins (meats / fish /nuts etc) will contain the important amino acids required by the body, dairy contains a high amount compared to other whole foods. For this reason it’s important to eat sufficient amounts of protein from varied protein sources to ensure a full range of amino acids are obtained from the diet (4)

The benefits of whey protein (5)

 Improve muscular recovery from exercise
 Improve muscle retention during weight loss
 Improve muscle gains when combined with resistance exercise
 Reduce hunger due to increases in gut hormones that signal fullness.
 High thermic effect

Why is whey protein so useful? : The answer is mTOR

This amino acid leucine causes an increase in a signalling protein call mammalian target of rapamycin (we’re just call it mTor for short). When levels of this signalling protein increase, the body knows there is sufficient protein and energy available to help build muscle. When these levels are low, the body senses this and so puts the brakes on muscle building as it needs to use incoming protein and energy for other more important functions (daily tissue maintenance, recovery from injury, hormone production). mTor kick starts the ball rolling for a number of processes that help build muscle and prevent muscle breakdown, so without it these processes simply can’t occur. So when studies have compared equal doses of whey to non-dairy protein, whey has always come out on top (6,7)

The added benefits of whey hydrolyses

As when as containing 50% whey isolate , Hydro-iso Performance also contains 50% Hydrolysed Whey Protein, which is whey protein that has had some of its amino acid peptide bonds broken enzymatically into shorter chains of amino acids (kind of like pre-digesting) which can lead to a faster release of amino acids from the stomach to the blood stream (8) The Hydrolysed Whey Protein is produced by using enzymes to treat the whey protein leaving the essential amino acids intact and retaining the high quality of protein (8)

This makes using a protein powder that contains whey hydrolyses protein for early morning training session ideal. At this time of day we have fasted for 8 – 12 hours and the availability of amino acids to the muscles about to be used is at its lowest at a time where we would like them to be peaking. Going into a heavy training session in this state (ie low availability of amino acids) leads to an increased risk of breaking down excess muscle tissue, which is obviously something we want to avoid. We could get around this by eating a solid meal but this has potential issues in its own right for early morning training

1) The digestion rate of a solid meal is significantly lower than that on whey hydrolyses so to get the same amount of amino acids into the blood stream as whey hydrolyses you would need to leave time for the meal to digest, which might not be an option for early morning

2) Some people find it uncomfortable to exercise on a full stomach, which would be the cause of eating prior early morning training
Whey protein hydrolysate has a little discussed benefit that is unique to this form of protein and is its ability to help the muscles uptake more accompanying carbohydrate and store it in the muscles are glycogen compared to other forms of protein due to its ability to up regulate a transporter enzyme called GLUT4, which allows a muscle to absorb more carbohydrate without the need of insulin, this has 2 benefits (9)

1) This allows for maximal levels of glycogen to be stored when combined with carbohydrates which may improve performance and recovery when there is less than 8 hours between trainings session (i.e. 2 a day training or muli-event competitions) that has depleted muscle

2) Helps ensure that carbohydrates are directed towards muscle and away from fat when either using as low or targeted carb diet when looking for fat loss, hence using incoming carbs as efficiently as possible.

Hydro-iso Performance: Perfect blend of whey isolate and hydrolysate: Take Home points
 Rapidly digested and absorbed into the blood stream providing more amino acids to the working muscles and at a quicker rate compared to whey protein concentrate
 Prevents muscle break during training session
 Speeds up recovery and reduces muscle soreness post training
 Restores more carbs into muscles as glycogen post training compared to whey concentrate
 Ideal If training early morning and you don’t have time to eat 60 – 90 minutes before a workout
 Perfect post training to maximise recovery, especially if training more than once in a day


1. McDonald L (2007) The Protein Book: 1st ed;www.bodyrecomposition.com
2. Antonio J, Peacock CA, Ellerbroek A, Fromhoff B, Silver T. The effects of consuming a high protein diet (4.4 g/kg/d) on body composition in resistance-trained individuals. J Int Soc Sports Nutr. 2014 May 12;11:19. doi: 10.1186/1550-2783-11-19
3. Casperson SL, Sheffield-Moore M, Hewlings SJ, Paddon-Jones D. Leucine supplementation chronically improves muscle protein synthesis in older adults consuming the RDA for protein. Clin Nutr. 2012 Aug;31(4):512-9. doi: 10.1016/j.clnu.2012.01.005
4. Hulmi JJ, Kovanen V, Selänne H, Kraemer WJ, Häkkinen K, Mero AA. Acute and long-term effects of resistance exercise with or without protein ingestion on muscle hypertrophy and gene expression. Amino Acids. 2009 Jul;37(2):297-308
5. Campbell B, et al. International Society of Sports Nutrition position stand: protein and exercise. J Int Soc Sports Nutr. 2007 Sep 26;4:8
6. Phillips SM, Tang JE, Moore DR. The role of milk- and soy-based protein in support of muscle protein synthesis and muscle protein accretion in young and elderly persons. J Am Coll Nutr.
2009 Aug;28(4):343-54.
7. 4. Yang Y, Churchward-Venne TA, Burd NA, Breen L, Tarnopolsky MA, Phillips SM. Myofibrillar protein synthesis following ingestion of soy protein isolate at rest and after resistance exercise in elderly men. Nutr Metab (Lond). 2012 Jun 14;9(1):57. doi: 10.1186/1743-7075-9-57
8. Beelen M1, Koopman R, Gijsen AP, Vandereyt H, Kies AK, Kuipers H, Saris WH, van Loon LJ. Protein coingestion stimulates muscle protein synthesis during resistance-type exercise. Am J Physiol Endocrinol Metab. 2008 Jul;295(1):E70-7
9. Morato PN1, Lollo PC, Moura CS, Batista TM, Camargo RL, Carneiro EM, Amaya-Farfan J. Whey protein hydrolysate increases translocation of GLUT-4 to the plasma membrane independent of insulin in wistar rats. PLoS One. 2013 Aug 30;8(8