History and culture
The word guarana comes from the Portuguese guaran, which has its origins in the Sater-Mau word for the plant, warana.
Guarana plays an important role in Tupi and Guaran Brazilian culture. According to a myth attributed to the Sater-Mau tribe, guarana's domestication originated with a deity killing a beloved village child. In order to console the villagers, a more benevolent god plucked the left eye from the child and planted it in the forest, resulting in the wild variety of guarana. The god then plucked the right eye from the child and planted it in the village, giving rise to domesticated guarana.
The Guarans would make a tea by shelling and washing the seeds, followed by pounding them into a fine powder. The powder is kneaded into a dough and then shaped into cylinders. This product is known as guarana bread or Brazilia coke, which would be grated and then immersed into hot water along with sugar.
This plant was introduced to western civilization in the 17th century following its discovery by Father Felip Betendorf. By 1958, guarana was commercialized.
Below are some of the chemicals found in guarana; all of them are found in the seeds, although other parts of the plant may contain them as well.
Parts per million
According to the Biological Magnetic Resonance Data Bank, guaranine is defined as only the caffeine chemical in guarana, it is identical to the caffeine chemical derived from other sources, for example coffee, tea, and mat. Guaranine, theine, and mateine are all synonyms for caffeine when the definitions of those words include none of the properties and chemicals of their host plants except the chemical caffeine. Natural sources of caffeine contain widely varying mixtures of xanthine alkaloids other than caffeine, including the cardiac stimulants theophylline and theobromine and other substances such as polyphenols which can form insoluble complexes with caffeine.
Guarana soft drinks, such as Guaran Antarctica, are very popular in Brazil.
Guarana is used in sweetened or carbonated soft drinks and energy shots, an ingredient of herbal tea, Perky Jerky, or contained in capsules. Generally, South America obtains most of its caffeine from guarana.
Brazil, which is the third-largest consumer of soft drinks in the world, produces several soft drink brands from guarana extract. Exceeding Brazilian sales of cola drinks, guarana-containing beverages may cause jitters associated with drinking coffee.
As guarana is rich in caffeine, it is of interest for its potential effects on cognition. In rats, guarana increased memory retention and physical endurance when compared with a placebo.
A 2007 human pilot study assessed acute behavioral effects to four doses (37.5 mg, 75 mg, 150 mg and 300 mg) of guarana extract. Memory, alertness and mood were increased by the two lower doses, confirming previous results of cognitive improvement following 75 mg guarana.
Other uses and side-effects
Guarana seed powder
In the United States, guarana has the status of being generally recognized as safe (GRAS).
Preliminary research has shown guarana may affect how quickly the body perceives itself to be full. One study showed an average 11.2 pound (5.1 kilogram) weight loss in a group taking a mixture of yerba mate, guarana, and damiana, compared to an average one pound loss in a placebo group after 45 days. Although inconclusive about specific effects due only to guarana, this study differs from another showing no effect on body weight of a formula containing guarana.
Guarana extract reduced aggregation of rabbit platelets by up to 37 percent below control values and decreased platelet thromboxane formation from arachidonic acid by 78 percent below control values. It is not known if such platelet action has any effect on the risk of heart attack or ischemic stroke.
Other laboratory studies showed antioxidant and antibacterial effects, and also fat cell reduction in mice (when combined with conjugated linoleic acid) from chronic intake of guarana.
From anecdotal evidence of excessive consumption of energy drinks, guarana may contribute (alone or in combination with caffeine and taurine) to onset of seizures in some people.
Drinks containing guarana
Some popular beverages containing guarana are:
A.C.T. (Advanced Cell Therapy) Energy Drink
Arizona Tea RxEnergy Herbal Tonic
Bazza High-Energy Green Tea
Bom Dia - Antioxidant Rich Juice from Bolthouse Do Brasil
Burn Intense Energy
Celsius energy drink
Cocaine Energy Drink
Crunk!!! Energy Drink
Dark Dog Energy Drink
ED energy drink
Ex Pure Energy and Ex Slim Energy, www.exdrinks.com
FREEK Evil Energy Beverage
Goya Guaran Soda
Guaran Brazilia by Crystal Beverage Corp
Guaran RAIN Natural Energy
Guaran Ice 100% Guaran or mixed with Acai
Guaran Knjaz Milos
GURU 100% Natural Energy Drink
HIRO Energy by Tahitian Noni International
"Indigo" fruit juice energy drink
Jamba Juice Energy Boost, available as an additive in any of their smoothies
Jolt Cola Energy drink
Josta (PepsiCo) First US Energy Drink
Kuat - a Coca-Cola produced Guaran soft drink
"Life Water" Energy by SoBe
Lipton Ice tea - Red Tea
Mountain Dew MDX
NOS Energy Drink
Ol' Glory Energy Drink
OpenBeer (All versions since 1.5)
Pit Bull Energy Drink
Pulse - Alcoholic Drink made in New Zealand.
Pure Energy Nation
Red Eye Energy Drinks
Rehab Recovery Supplement
Right size smoothies
Rocket Fuel, a UK drink by Food Brands Group
RootJack, Pirate Energy Drink
Le-Natures Samurai Tea
Shot "and go energy drink" by Salzburg Austria
Skinny Water http://www.skinnywater.com/
SoBe Adrenaline Rush, No Fear, Energy, Power, and Green Tea 3G
Solo Strong (Australia)
Steaz Energy Organic Fuel
SuddenRush Guarana shots
Su Fresh Power
Trader Joe's Energy drink
Truc De Fou
Upshot - energy shot
Vault Red Blitz
Glaceau Vitamin Water: Spark, energy - tropical citrus (b + guarana)
Volvic Revive - citrus kick flavour + Ginseng & Guarana
Jones Soda's Whoop Ass
^ D. K. Bempong a; P. J. Houghton a; Kathryn Steadman a. The Xanthine Content of Guarana and Its Preparations. Pharmaceutical Biology. August 1993.
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^ Sir Ghillean Prance, Mark Nesbitt (2004). Cultural History of Plants. New York: Routledge. p. 179.
^ "guarana". Merriam Webster. http://www.m-w.com/dictionary/guarana. Retrieved 2007-09-18.
^ Hans T. Beck, "10 Caffeine, Alcohol, and Sweeteners," Cultural History of Plants, ed. Sir Ghillean Prance and Mark Nesbitt (New York: Routledge, 2004) 179.
^ a b Bennett Alan Weinberg, and Bonnie K. Bealer, The World of Caffeine: The Science and Culture of the World's Most Popular Drug (New York: Routledge, 2001) 25960.
^ "Guarana". Dr. Duke's Phytochemical and Ethnobotanical Databases. 2007-09-18. http://sun.ars-grin.gov:8080/npgspub/xsql/duke/plantdisp.xsql?taxon=703. Retrieved 2007-09-18.
^ Duke, James A. 1992. Handbook of phytochemical constituents of GRAS herbs and other economic plants. Boca Raton, FL. CRC Press.
^ "Caffeine". Biological Magnetic Resonance Data Bank, University of Wisconsin-Madison. http://www.bmrb.wisc.edu/metabolomics/gen_metab_summary_5.php?molName=caffeine#SYNONYMS. Retrieved 2007-09-19.
^ Balentine D. A., Harbowy M. E. and Graham H. N. (1998). G Spiller. ed. Tea: the Plant and its Manufacture; Chemistry and Consumption of the Beverage.
^ Bennett Alan Weinberg, and Bonnie K. Bealer, The World of Caffeine: The Science and Culture of the World's Most Popular Drug (New York: Routledge, 2001) 230.
^ Bennett Alan Weinberg, and Bonnie K. Bealer, The World of Caffeine: The Science and Culture of the World's Most Popular Drug (New York: Routledge, 2001) 1923.
^ Matt Moffett and Nikhil Deogun, The Wall Street Journal. "Guarana's potent reputation makes consumers drink it up". Standard-Times. http://www.s-t.com/daily/07-99/07-11-99/b03bu068.htm. Retrieved 2007-09-18.
^ Espinola EB, Dias RF, Mattei R, Carlini EA (February 1997). "Pharmacological activity of Guarana (Paullinia cupana Mart.) in laboratory animals". J Ethnopharmacol 55 (3): 2239. doi:10.1016/S0378-8741(96)01506-1. PMID 9080343.
^ Haskell CF, Kennedy DO, Wesnes KA, Milne AL, Scholey AB (January 2007). "A double-blind, placebo-controlled, multi-dose evaluation of the acute behavioral effects of guaran in humans". J. Psychopharmacol. (Oxford) 21 (1): 6570. doi:10.1177/0269881106063815. PMID 16533867.
^ "Energy Drinks" (PDF). University of California, Davis". April 2007. http://nutrition.ucdavis.edu/InfoSheets/ANR/EnergyDrinkFact.pdf. Retrieved 2007-09-18.
^ Anderson, T and Foght, J (2001). "Weight loss and delayed gastric emptying following a South American herbal preparation in overweight patients". J Hum Nutr Diet 14 (3): 243. doi:10.1046/j.1365-277X.2001.00290.x. PMID 11424516.
^ Sale C, Harris RC, Delves S, Corbett J (May 2006). "Metabolic and physiological effects of ingesting extracts of bitter orange, green tea and guarana at rest and during treadmill walking in overweight males". Int J Obes (Lond) 30 (5): 76473. doi:10.1038/sj.ijo.0803209. PMID 16418760.
^ Bydlowski SP, D'Amico EA, Chamone DA (1991). "An aqueous extract of guaran (Paullinia cupana) decreases platelet thromboxane synthesis". Braz. J. Med. Biol. Res. 24 (4): 4214. PMID 1823256.
^ Nicolaou, KC et al. (1979). "Synthesis and biological properties of pinane-thromboxane A2, a selective inhibitor of coronary artery constriction, platelet aggregation, and thromboxane formation". Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 76 (6): 25662570. doi:10.1073/pnas.76.6.2566. PMID 288046.
^ Terpstra, et al.; Beynen, AC; Everts, H; Kocsis, S; Katan, MB; Zock, PL (2002). "The Decrease in Body Fat in Mice Fed Conjugated Linoleic Acid Is Due to Increases in Energy Expenditure and Energy Loss in the Excreta". J Nutr 132 (5): 940945. PMID 11983818. http://www.nemhaupt.de/obesity.htm.
^ Iyadurai SJ, Chung SS (May 2007). "New-onset seizures in adults: possible association with consumption of popular energy drinks". Epilepsy Behav 10 (3): 5048. doi:10.1016/j.yebeh.2007.01.009. PMID 17349826.
^ Bazza High-Energy Green Tea
^ Bom Dia
^ Bud Extra
^ FREEK Evil Energy Beverage
^ Guaran Power
^ Ice Break
Guarana medical uses, dosage, and side effects
Guarana at USDA database
Categories: Paullinia | Fruit | Herbal and fungal stimulants | Trees of Venezuela | Trees of Brazil | Native crops of Brazil | Tropical agriculture | Portuguese loanwordsHidden categories: All articles with unsourced statements | Articles with unsourced statements from December 2009