Mike The Situation Devotion Protein Vodka
Mike "The Situation" Sorrentino has not only taken protein to the shelves of GNC through his new supplement line but also has put protein into the hands of bartenders and party goers alike. "The Situation", star of MTV's Jersey Shore, is the new spokesman of Devotion, the world's only protein infused vodka. The vodka has 2 grams of protein per standard 1.5 oz. shot. According to Devotion Vodka's website:
"Distilled from the finest grains, Devotion Vodka is the first 80-proof, triple-distilled casein (protein) infused vodka to enter the US market. Infused with PeptoPro®, the casein creates a warm and inviting flavor that takes the bite out of vodka for an ultra smooth taste."
Vodka and Protein mixed together? It's quite funny actually but my roomate at Bryant University, Garrett Fitzgerald, had this idea a few years ago that he used to preach to me all the time...create an alcoholic beverage with protein in it. I guess it was because of all the kids that we were surrounded by who were heavily into working out and leading a healthy lifestyle on the one hand, but then were party animals at night (a not so healthy way of life). While he was half-joking at the time, I'm not at all surprised that there will be hefty demand for this product, especially at the bar scene and as a 'pre-game' ritual amongst the lifting/bodybuilding community. I can hear the "VODKA PROTEIN" chants already! With the Ronnie Coleman craze and "YEAH BUDDYS" flowing around college campuses, this "never-before-seen" product is actually filling a niche market that will ultimately deliver tremendous revenue. I guess it's just too bad my roomate didn't follow through on it.
The specific protein in Devotion, casein protein, is a slow-digesting protein, as opposed to whey protein (which is used in the body almost instantaneously). Casein protein is most ideal for sleeping hours, in which your body is deprived of protein for an extended period of time. Casein protein ensures that your body is getting a constant and steady supply of protein throughout the night for both muscle growth and recovery.
This alcoholic/protein beverage combination is the absolute perfect marketing tool for "The Situation" to provide party/gym enthusiasts with the best situation (pun intended) for their crazy nights.
However, will this product work?
Besides the vast negatives of drinking alcohol on basic health (dehydration, depletion of vitamins and nutrients and fat gain), alcohol also has large implications on muscle building and recovery. Drinking alcohol is terribly counterproductive for building muscle and losing weight. Besides the empty calories that you get from the booze, the main pitfall of drinking alcohol is dehydration. If you're wondering what a hangover is from, it's mainly from the dehydration and the low blood sugar levels. Alcohol has such a dramatic effect on ridding the body of water, which is one of the most important components a body needs in order to remain anabolic, keep testosterone high, and cortisol low. You'll rarely see a professional bodybuilder or boxer ever drink alcohol because of the negative impact it has on the body. If you drink alcohol, you can kiss some of the hard work you put in the gym goodbye.
Furthermore, the protein in the drink will have little effect on the body's ability to build muscle since it has to rid the body of the alcohol as its main priority. Whenever alcohol is consumed, it is first converted by the liver into something called acetate. The body treats this sugar as its first and foremost priority. Therefore, your body's capabilites of burning off fat and using protein to build muscle are being taken away to concentrate on the alcohol. So in essence, your fat and carbohydrate burning efforts and the capabilities that you provide with protein are put on hold; and whatever isn't burned up will turn into fat. All in all, you'll gain fat and lose muscle mass if you rely on Devotion.
To understand what is being alluded to more clearly: the protein that is in this drink will not be absorbed by your body.
There are three macronutrients: protein, carbohydrates, and fat. Protein has 4 calories per gram. Carbohydrates have 4 calories per gram. Fat has 9 calories per gram. Then there is alcohol, which has 7 calories per gram and is converted into a sugar called acetate by the liver. Whenever alcohol is consumed, your body brings all of its efforts towards breaking down the acetate to use as its main form of energy. Your body uses this as its fuel as opposed to the glycogen stores, carbohydrate stores, and fat stores you have in your cells. Protein, too, is a form of energy (hence, 4 calories per gram). When you consume alcohol, your body's attention is directed towards the breakdown of acetate. This occurs before your body can use the protein as energy to build rock, hard muscle. Only once your body uses up all the energy from the acetate can it move on to digest the protein.
Let's say a collegiate binge drinker takes 6 shots of vodka in a half hour. That can be upwards of 500 calories in the form of alcohol and by extension, acetate. Your body has to burn up the 500 calories of acetate before it can ever get to digesting the protein. An average 180 lb. male will burn about 85 calories per hour, not including physical activity, which would take close to 6 hours to burn off the energy from the alcohol. By the time that 6 hours has passed to get to the protein it's already too late. 6 hours will pass, you will have had your pizza to use as stored energy, probably have some more booze that your body has to further burn up, and the protein will have already converted into fat before your body can utilize it.
Now you may ask yourself, "What if I only have 1 drink and can burn up the calories from alcohol in time to get to the protein before it converts to fat?". Well, gee partner, your body just might absorb the mere 2 grams of protein. A bite of tuna fish will have twice the amount.
Moreover, since alcohol affects your basic sleeping pattern, the amount of growth hormone synthesized by the body is dramatically hindered. Growth hormone is used by the body in the role of building muscle. When growth hormone is low, you are not going to grow at a proper rate. Growth hormone is mainly released during your sleep cycle at night. Research has shown that growth hormone can be reduced by as much as 70% when consuming alcohol.
Furthermore, testosterone also has a huge effect on muscle growth, which explains why men can grow more muscle and size than woman (by the larger amounts of testosterone levels). Alcohol consumption lowers the rate of testosterone in the body and even increases estrogen levels in males.
If protein helps you build and repair muscle then alcohol will only prevent this. Therefore, mixing vodka with protein, no matter how much, will actually have negative health consequences to you.
Devotion Vodka is available in the US in 750 ml size at a suggested retail price of $27.99.
Take note however, that this is not to discredit "The Situation" in any regard. The Situation made a very smart decision by signing a $400,000 deal to be the featured spokesperson of the vodka brand due to its potential revenue stream. People will buy this product and they'll use it very frequently. However, it won't be because of the product's ability to actually do what its marketing preached (build muscle while getting "f*cked up"), but because of its genius marketability to feast on an undeucated prey.
Not only is he reportedly making nearly $60,000 per episode for season three of the Jersey Shore but he may make up to $5,000,000 by the end of the year with all his endorsements and personal appearances. Not too shabby for a personal trainer.
Talk about a true "Situation"!
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