e-Gel vs GU energy gel comparison

GU is the most popular energy gel, but e-Gel is simply a better product. e-Gel has more complex carbs and less sugar than GU which allows for increased energy uptake. e-Gel puts all the electrolytes you need right in the gel (4 x more than GU) to avoid cramping and injuries. e-Gel is also a thinner consistency so it’s easier to get down compared to a thick GU. That’s not all, read below for a complete comparison.

calories

e-Gel

150

GU

100

Each pack of e-Gel provides 50% more energy than a pack of GU. This makes e-Gel more economical because 2 packs of e-Gel is the energy equivalent to 3 packs of GU. Fewer packs to carry and less trash to deal with, that’s a good thing!

complex carbs

e-Gel

30 g

GU

15 g

Your body can uptake more energy when you use complex carbs instead of simple sugars. How is this possible?

Click below for the detailed explanation

This isn’t something that we’ve invented here a Crank Sports, it’s proven science. 

Read on (or watch this video)

The carbs/energy in an energy gel are transported into your cellular system through osmosis. If you recall learning about osmosis in science class, it’s the way a fluid crosses a membrane. In order for the fluid to cross, it has to be an equal or lower concentration than the fluid on the other side of the membrane. In this case you’re trying to get the gel across your cellular membrane so you can use the energy. Gels by themselves are extremely concentrated (hypertonic), that’s why you need to use water with gel so that you can lower the concentration until it becomes isotonic (the same concentration as your cellular fluids). When you do, the gel and water get absorbed – osmosis!!

What’s interesting is that the concentration of a fluid (also called the osmolality) is largely dependent on the NUMBER of particles in the fluid, and less dependent on the size of the particles. Complex carbs by definition have a larger molecular structure than simple sugars, basically they have more glucose molecules stuck together. But remember, it’s the number of particles, not the size that matters most. What that means is that at the point of absorption (isotonic), a fluid with complex carbs can transport nearly twice as much energy into the cellular system compared to one with simple sugars.

Many energy gels (including e-Gel) use at least some maltodextrin for this reason. Maltodextrin is a complex carbohydrate with an extremely large molecular structure. Where e-Gel sets itself apart from other products is that we use much more complex carb and less sugar. This allows you to get more energy when you use e-Gel compared to our competitors. Why do other companies use so much sugar? Simple, because it’s sweet and inexpensive, and sweet things sell. So if you want to sell a lot of something you make it sweet. But if you want to make the best PERFORMING product you use complex carbs.

sugar

e-Gel

18%

GU

32%

By providing lower sugar and more complex carbs, e-Gel is able to provide significantly more total energy uptake. See our complex carb discussion for complete details.

carb sources

e-Gel

Maltodextrin
Fructose

GU

Maltodextrin
Fructose

Both e-Gel and GU use a combination of maltodextrin and fructose. Maltodextrin is the preferred complex carbohydrate for endurance athletes and fructose is in the product because it allows for additional energy uptake that you do not get from gels that don’t use it, read why

sodium

e-Gel

230 mg

GU

60 mg

e-Gel is the only energy gel to provide complete electrolyte replacement in the gel – where it should be!

Sodium is by far the most important electrolyte that you need to replenish to help you maintain hydration and to avoid cramping and injuries.

For a more detailed discussion of why it’s important to have this level of electrolytes in the gel instead of getting your electrolytes some other way:

read details

potassium

e-Gel

85 mg

GU

40 mg

Potassium is the other electrolyte that is important to replace during your training and competition, along with sodium. The level of potassium in e-Gel is designed to meet the American College of Sports Medicine’s recommendation for replacement during athletic activity. 

amino acids

e-Gel

Histidine, Leucine,
Valine, Isoleucine

GU

Leucine, Valine,
Isoleucine

Amino acids help to reduce lactic acid build up, reduce soreness, maintain muscle protein and aid in quicker recovery.

antioxidants

e-Gel

vitamin C 120%
vitamin E 120%

GU

none

Antioxidant vitamins C and E help protect against tissue damage, reduce soreness and aid in the recovery process.

citrates

e-Gel

Sodium Citrate, Potassium Citrate and Citric Acid

GU

Sodium Citrate, Potassium Citrate and Citric Acid​

Citrates assist in the carbohydrate to energy conversion process as well as slow the build up of lactic acid in your muscles.

ready to try e-Gel?

we guarantee you'll love it!

Watch our video comparison

facebook-customer-reviews

Keith Castleton

"Figuring out how to stay hydrated, not get upset stomach and prevent muscle cramps during long runs and races has been one of my biggest challenges. In the past my muscles would ache and twitch and cause me a lot of pain after long runs. I came across e-Gel energy gels this summer used them during the Top Of Utah Marathon, took 17 minutes off my previous marathon PR and easily qualified for Boston." ...
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Maricopa, Arizona
Sport: Running

Jeff Rommel

"I broke the golden rule and tried e-Gel for the first time on race day. I ran the Houston Marathon and it was a great experience - no stomach issues and no muscle cramping. Water in my bottle and an e-Gel every hour got me through the race. I'm not the fastest runner, but I set a PR!" ...
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Houston, Texas
Sport: Running

Bruce English

"I recently completed a half-iron distance triathlon with a brutal bike course. At the end of the ride my quads started to cramp. I nursed an e-Gel over the first mile of the run and the cramps abated. I thought it may have been coincidence, but when the cramps resurfaced at mile 7 only to resolve with another e-Gel I was sold. I only drank water on the run and took e-Gel, so I feel confident that this product made the difference. " ...
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Waynesboro, Virginia
Sport: Triathlon

Shawn Smith

"At the USA Cycling Marathon Championships it was a 58 mile course and temps around 80-84. ... I raced to a 3rd place on only 2 bottles of e-Fuel and 2 e-Gels. No way around it. This product works and is fueling you can trust." ...
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Gainesville , Florida
Sport: Cycling

Vicki Griffin

"I am an Ironman distance, age grouper triathlete trying to qualify for Kona. Nutrition has always been a struggle... stomach issues, etc.... I used e-Fuel and e-Gel on my last 70.3, had no stomach issues, and won my age group." ...
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Leawood, Kansas
Sport: Triathlon

Kathy Murgas

"A friend recommended e-Gel years ago. I tried it, loved it, and 65 marathons (including 1 in each of the 50 states), I am still using it. I've changed the way I train, the shoes and wear, the clothes I wear, but never the gel I use." ...
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Dallas, Texas
Sport: Running & Cycling

NOTE: All GU nutrition values shown are for Vanilla Bean as of April 2021, other flavors may vary. e-Gel nutrition values are the same for all flavors, read why

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