Nutrition 21 catches pandemic-powered Esports wave

By Hank Schultz

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags Cognitive function eSports

Nutrition 21 started developing its award-winning NooLVL ingredient before Esports became such a thriving category. But the ingredient’s particular cognitive-support benefits have helped it catch a wave that has grown bigger through the pandemic’s influence.

NooLVL is made through a patented process in which arginine, silicon and inositol are bonded together.  The company claims part of the secret sauce is the optimized ratio of these constituents that maximizes the ingredient’s cognitive benefits. Those include better processing speed, increased focus and greater cognitive flexibility, all without resorting to a stimulant-like effect.

Seizing the Esports opportunity

Weiss said the ingredient has been under development for a number of years.  But in that time, the company came to appreciate the huge opportunity the Esports market presented.  Nutrition 21 now aims the ingredient directly at these younger consumers.

“Esports has been growing for a very long time.  Last year it was over $1 billion a year market.  It has growing around 15% per year,”​ Weiss said.

“It’s a lot like traditional sports in many ways. There are pro teams, there are college scholarships available. You can watch people game on streaming platforms,” ​he added.

That opportunity has grown through the pandemic, Weiss said.  It’s no secret that tens of millions of potential consumers are spending more time at home, and more time on their devices.  One projection puts the market to grow to more than $1.8 billion by 2026.

Besides its patents (up to 10 granted and pending at this time) another thing that sets the product apart is a double-blind, placebo-controlled trial done directly with online gamers. The inclusion criteria was participating in video gaming at least five hours a week.  The authors concluded the results, “[S]upport the use of the studied product (nooLVL) in eSports gamers looking to improve their accuracy, decision making, and reaction time during gaming.” Tartar et al., Nutrients​, 2019, 11(10), 2036

The ingredient’s potential benefits and scientific support attracted the eye of up and coming sports brand Advanced.GG​, which launched a product featuring NooLVL in 2020.

NutraIngredients-USA Awards 2021 deadline extended

That clinical trial support was also part of what put NooLVL over the top in 2020, when it won NutraIngredients-USA​’s Sports Nutrition Ingredient of the Yea​r.  The deadline to submit entries for this year’s awards, which include a number of categories beyond sports nutrition, has been extended​.  For more information, visit the NutraIngredients-USA Awards homepage​. 

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