Ingredient Spotlight: PeakO2®

For well over a decade, beta alanine has been viewed as the premier ingredient for boosting endurance and stamina among athletes.


And, make no mistake, beta alanine definitely has utility when it comes to enhancing athletic performance, but it by no means is the only option athletes have for staying stronger and lasting longer during training or competition.


Today, we highlight an ingredient (or rather a blend of six ingredients) that can also be effective for increasing stamina, power, and overall athletic performance.


That ingredient is none other than PeakO2.

What is PeakO2?

PeakO2 is a patent-pending blend of six ayurvedic mushrooms including:

  • Cordyceps militaris
  • Reishi
  • King Trumpet
  • Shiitake
  • Lion’s Mane
  • Turkey Tail

What Does PeakO2 Do?

The mushrooms contained in PeakO2 act as potent adaptogens, enhancing an athlete’s ability to deal with all manner of physical, emotional, and psychological stressors (e.g. resistance training, circuit training, HIIT, endurance training, etc.).


In other words, adaptogens help you adapt to what’s going on around you.

Benefits of PeakO2

Human exercise studies have found that supplementing with PeakO2 may[1,2,3]:


  • Increase VO2 max
  • Boost endurance
  • Improve time to fatigue
  • Improve oxygen utilization
  • Enhance peak power output
  • Decrease lactate
  • Increase work capacity
  • Lower heart beats per minute (essentially, the heart is doing more work with less effort)
  • Increase ventilatory threshold
  • Improve time to exhaustion (TTE)



Essentially, PeakO2 supplementation may significantly improve endurance, power and all around athletic performance which is why it is featured in PhytoActivMax.

PeakO2 Research

PeakO2 first gained notoriety following publication of the landmark 2016 study conducted at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill. Researchers assessed the effects of consuming 4g per day of PeakO2 on:

  • Time to exhaustion
  • Anaerobic power
  • Lactate levels


At the conclusion of that trial, researchers documented that the test group experienced significant increases in peak power output, VO2 Max, and time to exhaustion.


In fact, after only SEVEN DAYS (one week) of supplementation, PeakO2 improved time to exhaustion by about 30 seconds!


After three weeks of supplementation with Peak O2, time to exhaustion improved by an astounding 70 seconds! VO2 max also increased by 5 milliliters per kilogram minute, and power output increased by 17.6%!

PeakO2 vs Beta Alanine

While both beta alanine and PeakO2 can be beneficial for boosting stamina and endurance, there are some stark differences between the two ingredients.


For starters, PeakO2 can be beneficial for activities lasting less than 60 seconds. Beta alanine’s performance-boosting prowess really doesn’t kick in until you’ve been under physical exertion for at least 60 seconds.


Second, PeakO2 requires a much smaller dose to reach saturation (~28 grams) whereas beta alanine requires a fairly large dose (~179 grams). What this means is that you can reach saturation with PeakO2 in a few days whereas typical beta alanine dosing strategies (3.2-6.4 grams per day) mean you won’t start seeing benefits from the ingredient until at least 4-8 weeks after starting supplementation.


Third, PeakO2 doesn’t come with the sometimes annoying “tingles” (paresthesia) that beta alanine does.


So, does this mean you ditch beta alanine altogether?


No, not at all.


In fact, there could be an argument made that the combination of the two could lead to even better performance, especially if you’re an endurance athlete as the two ingredients work via different mechanisms.


However, for the average fitness enthusiasts who hits the gym a few times per week and knocks out sets of 8-15 reps with 1-3 minutes rest between sets, PeakO2 offers much greater upside than beta alanine. Which is why PeakO2 is one of the many powerful ingredients featured in the formula to our comprehensive active-greens, PhytoActivMax.



Coming Soon


  1. Wesley David Dudgeon, Dennison David Thomas, William Dauch, Timothy Paul Scheett, Michael John Webster, The Effects of High and Low-Dose Cordyceps Militaris-Containing Mushroom Blend Supplementation After Seven and Twenty-Eight Days, American Journal of Sports Science. Volume 6, Issue 1, March 2018 , pp. 1-7. doi: 10.11648/j.ajss.20180601.11
  2. Katie R. Hirsch, Abbie E. Smith-Ryan, Erica J. Roelofs, Eric T. Trexler & Meredith G. Mock (2017) Cordyceps militaris Improves Tolerance to High-Intensity Exercise After Acute and Chronic Supplementation, Journal of Dietary Supplements, 14:1, 42-53, DOI: 10.1080/19390211.2016.1203386
  3. Katie R Hirsch, Meredith G Mock, Erica J Roelofs, Eric T Trexler & Abbie E Smith-Ryan (2015) Chronic supplementation of a mushroom blend on oxygen kinetics, peak power, and time to exhaustion, Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition, 12:sup1, DOI: 10.1186/1550-2783-12-S1-P45

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