Red Spinach Background & Benefits
Red Spinach is the common name for the plant Amaranthus hybridus. Xtend-Life uses the world’s most premium red spinach ingredient that it is fully standardised and contains a higher level of nitrates than other red spinach extracts.
Amaranthus is a broad genus consisting of approximately 75 different species of plants. Some amaranth species are cultivated as sources of food, others as traditional medicine, and some species of amaranth are cultivated as ornamental plants.
Despite its name, red spinach is not related to the more common green spinach. The vibrant, deep red colour of red spinach comes from betacyanin pigments. This particular shade of red/purple is distinctive and unlike that of anthocyanin pigments found in most plants. Betacyanins are also found in beetroot. Betacyanins are water-soluble nitrogen containing pigments that have powerful antioxidant properties.
Red Spinach is a rich source of nitrates. Nitrates are beneficial for supporting healthy blood flow and healthy cardiovascular function. Having healthy blood flow is extremely important for keeping blood pressure in the normal range. Healthy blood flow is also a crucial part of exercise performance. Beetroot powder is well-known and popular for its nitrate content, however, red spinach extract is as much as 36 times higher in nitrates than beetroot powder.
Clinical studies have shown that red spinach extract is beneficial in aerobic exercise. In one study, those taking red spinach extract had an increase in ventilatory threshold - this is just a fancy term for breathing and lung capacity. In another study, red spinach extract supplementation increased measures of power and speed and the results were more notable in women compared to men.
Red Spinach is also high in several vitamins and minerals, it contains high levels of Vitamin A, C and iron. It also contains a natural substance called phytoecdysteriod which is related to, but much less potent than, anabolic steroids. Phytoecdysteriod from plants such as red spinach has been shown to help build muscle and support enhanced exercise performance.
Uses of Red Spinach Extract
Most supplements that contain red spinach extract are designed for improving exercise performance. In addition, red spinach extract is used to support healthy blood flow and for the maintenance of normal blood pressure.