**** UPDATE: Please note — while you can still buy this product on Amazon UK (only 1 left in stock at the time of writing), this particular variation of the product seems to have been officially discontinued by USN. You may want to try USN’s Muscle Fuel Anabolic instead. ****
USN Hyperbolic Mass is a food supplement that falls under the category of weight gainer, or as it also known, mass gainer.
Weight gainers are essentially high calorie food supplements with plentiful carbohydrates, protein, vitamins and other elements. Many typically contain more than 1,000 calories per serving.
The idea of a mass gainer is to help people who cannot put on weight bulk up and add muscle; think of it as a ‘muscle catalyst’ if you will. Individuals with a fast metabolism will benefit from consuming more calories and quality carbohydrates in order to avoid having to break down muscle tissue for energy. That’s where a weight gainer comes in.
USN Hyperbolic Mass includes as much as 231g of carbs per 300g serving, and 51g protein. It is also high in Branched Chain Amino Acids (BCAAs), amino acids which directly influence muscle gain.
Let’s take a closer look at the ingredients before we evaluate whether this can really work…
First, a word of warning: USN Hyperbolic Mass is sold on Amazon UK as well as the official USN website (and other sources) but the nutritional information about it is confusing and, in some cases, may be inaccurate.
On USN’s official Amazon page for Hyperbolic Mass, for instance, we are told that it contains 61g of high quality protein, yet lower down the page it talks about 51g of protein and lower still, 53g of protein. Confusing, much?
Likewise, it mentions 202g of carbs per 300g serving, and lower down the page again, 195g of carbs per serving, BOTH of which differ from USN’s official website which lists it as having 231g of carbs per 300g serving. Which do we believe?
And, finally, do we believe it has 4.7g of creatine as listed on Amazon, or 4.5g as listed on the official USN website?
Just what is going on? Why are there so many different accounts of the same product? It’s very possible that the formula for USN Hyperbolic Mass has changed, possibly more than once. Certainly there seem to be two different versions of the product label doing the rounds, one calling itself USN Hyperbolic Mass All-In-One Gainer, and another calling itself the All-In-One Hyperbolic Mass.
Regardless of the reason, someone needs to sort it out. Even the nutritional information label for the Amazon UK product differs in some cases to the Amazon text. It’s a bit of a mess.
Anyway, we’ve chosen to go with the official USN website’s account of the All-In-One Hyperbolic Mass and its nutritional information, which is:
Protein: 51g (technically 50.9g)
Carbs: 231g per 300g serving
USN Hyperbolic Mass includes a 29.5g hyperbolic stack including Creatine Monohydrate, HMB, Taurine (1g per 300g serving), Avena Sativa, Glutamine (6.5g), Beta-alanine, and L-glycine. It also has a wide amino acid profile including 3.1g Leucine, 1.7g Isoleucine, 1.7g valine. All in all, it has 6.5g of BCAAs (Branch-Chain Amino Acids). Let’s take a closer look at some of these:
Creatine is considered a headline ingredient when it comes to weight gainers. Creatine monohydrate is a combination of three amino acids – glycine, arginine and methionine – and is often mistaken for a steroid, though it is completely natural.
Its usefulness here is in its ability to aid strength and endurance, providing extra ATP to fuel the muscles. Studies have shown that it can aid in muscle thickness in young adults.
Creatine can also help to reduce muscle damage after a workout by reducing inflammation.
4.5g of creatine may be a little lower than normally recommended (5g is suggested for maintenance), but when combined with a decent amount of BCAAs in a weight gainer, the results can be noticeable.
BCAAs — Leucine
Leucine is one of the three aforementioned BCAAs – isoleucine and valine are the others – and between them they make up a third of the body’s muscle protein, * yet cannot be made by the body alone. BCAAs help the body to absorb protein, reduce muscle fatigue and encourage muscle recovery after exercise, but are also depleted during exercise.
Taking them pre-workout should help to boost performance, while supplementing with BCAAs after a workout helps to lower stress-related cortisol which destroys muscle. USN Hyperbolic Mass contains 6.5g of BCAAs in total.
Leucine in particular is proven to stimulate protein synthesis, helping to preserve and encourage muscle growth. At least 3g of leucine is needed to be effective (says Men’s Health). USN Hyperbolic Mass includes 3.1g of leucine. It also contains 1.7g Isoleucine, 1.7g valine.
USN Hyperbolic Mass contains a generous 6.5g of glutamine, a ‘buzz’ ingredient for muscle gain. Fans will tell you that glutamine helps to build lean muscle and aids with post-exercise recovery, BUT Examine.com isn’t so sure. It states that the only proven research on muscle gain as a result of glutamine supplementation has been seen on people suffering from muscle wasting disease or trauma. It has yet to be proven effective for healthy people.
HMB – β-Hydroxy β-Methylbutyrate
USN Hyperbolic Mass also contains HMB — β-Hydroxy β-Methylbutyrate – which is a metabolite of leucine and is more potent on a gram by gram basis at aiding muscle retention (reducing the rate of muscle breakdown) than leucine is. The latter, however, is more effective at encouraging protein synthesis and thereby increasing muscle mass.
Human studies of HMB have so far focused more on its ability to promote muscle growth and results suggest that, like glutamine, it may be more effective for people with muscle atrophy than healthy people.
Beta-alanine is thought to boost muscle endurance and subsequent performance by encouraging the production of carnosine. Carnosine helps to control the amount of acid build-up in the muscles which causes fatigue.
Some experts warn that it may take weeks to build your carnosine to effective levels, while studies suggest beta-alanine may be more effective at reducing your rate of perceived exertion (how hard you feel your body is working) than in actually boosting performance.
As such, it may be more effective for gym work or training (meaning you won’t feel as tired as quickly) than in competitive sport.
Note: Beta-alanine has a potential side effect – paresthesia, tingling of the hands, face, fingers, toes or chest. See our section on side effects later.
Vitamins and Minerals
USN Hyperbolic Mass also contains numerous vitamins and minerals, such as potassium, vitamins A, B1, B2, B6, B12, folic acid, iron, magnesium, phosphorous, and more.
- Drinking a weight gaining shake is an easy way to significantly increase your calorie intake, often much easier than trying to eat more food. Many men find it hard to eat the requisite 4000 calories per day in order to build muscle.
- USN Hyperbolic Mass contains a full range of vitamins and minerals, such as calcium to aid normal muscle function and growth; magnesium (helps protein synthesis), vitamin B6 (helps protein and glycogen metabolism), and iron which aids oxygen transport through the body.
- USN Hyperbolic Mass contains high levels of BCAAs.
- The manufacturers say it builds muscle, helps you gain weight, with more energy and no bloating. Some people have had issues with the latter.
- USN Hyperbolic Mass only contains 0.4g of saturated fat per 300g serving.
- Contains 231g of carbs per 300g serving. High amounts of carbohydrates provide significant energy when working out, preventing the breakdown of muscle for energy.
- The majority of happy reviews on Amazon and elsewhere suggest USN Hyperbolic Mass tastes ok and works. One reviewer on Bodybuilder.com put on 9kg in one month, another put on 3kg in one month taking just one scoop of USN Hyperbolic Mass a day.
- Each 300g serving of USN Hyperbolic Mass has 56.3of sugar. Too much sugar can spike your insulin levels, leaving you feeling drowsy, and can lead to you putting on fat rather than muscle.
- Some side effects have been reported by unhappy users, namely stomach cramps and toilet issues.
- Several reviewers complain that the shake is too thick to drink easily and makes them feel sick. One reviewer compared it to ‘drinking glue’.
- The nutritional information for USN Hyperbolic Mass is very hard to read on USN’s official site.
- You need to use a lot of powder per serving so a giant tub of any weight gainer isn’t likely to last very long.
- As you are using so much powder, you will ideally need a blender or a proper shaker to ensure you can mix it well.
Who Takes It?
Weight gainers are aimed at people who need to put on body mass but who don’t find it easy, and who want to build lean muscle without putting on fat. You may have a fast metabolism which doesn’t allow you to bulk up easily.
How to Take It?
USN recommend you start by adding three scoops (150g) of powder to 375-450ml of water or full cream milk (the latter will increase the calorie count). After a week, you can move on to six scoops (300g) of powder, mixed with 750-900 ml of water or milk divided between two USN shakers.
USN Hyperbolic Mass can be taken at any time during the day. Ideally, you wouldn’t take a mass gainer with food as you will want to get as many calories as you can directly from food first. Taking it between meals will also ensure you consume a steady flow of calories throughout the day.
Safety/ Side Effects
USN Hyperbolic Mass is a food supplement so some of the potential side effects that you could experience will be similar to eating a lot of excess ‘stodgy’ food, such as oatmeal and milk. The main side effect people report is digestive issues, such as stomach cramps, diarrhoea, bloating, all signs of consuming a huge ‘calorie bomb’ in one go. You may be unlucky and find that your stomach simply can’t handle the amount of calories in a mass gainer, or you could try splitting your 300mg serving up into smaller servings that you drink throughout the day. Mixing it with water rather than milk will help to reduce the calories.
Beta-alanine can also cause paresthesia, a tingling of the hands, feet, chest and face, which may occur in dosages of 1g or above. (USN Hyperbolic Mass contains 1.5g of alanine). This is usually a temporary problem and subsides after an hour or two. It should be said that we have not seen any such side-effects reported as a result of USN Hyperbolic Mass, however.
No matter which weight gainer you buy, remember that you won’t turn into the hulk overnight. It takes time to build muscle.
In theory, 3,500 calories roughly equals 1lb of body weight, so assuming you can digest the additional 1,000 calories a day, you may gain as much as 2lbs per week. Of course, your muscle gain also depends on your diet and exercise regime.
As weight gainers go, USN Hyperbolic Mass is a fairly popular product and, if reviews can be believed, does work over time. If you can’t bring yourself to eat all the calories you need at the dinner table, USN Hyperbolic Mass could be a useful tool in breaking your weight gain plateau.