When the new chocolate Sphere flavour out from Vitaflo (in 2019) I decided to see if I could fit this into my diet - see here for the first installment. How did I do it and what happened?
I kept a food report over the week logging all food & drink so I could calculate up the amount of phenylalanine (phe) from both diet and supplement. The intake varied between 6 exchanges and 12 exchanges, all over my 5 exchange limit. This variation indicated days when either I didn’t eat all of the food exchanges or when I had an unintentional run in with some Easter chocolate!
Most of us will be familiar with the symptoms of high phe but it is good to remind ourselves from time to time. Remember; familiarity breeds contempt. So we might just be putting up with something not realising we can fix it!
- poor concentration
- frequent migraine headaches tiredness
- skin dryness
- mood swings
- joint pains
- difficulty dealing with day to day tasks; such as working out money in a shop
I did notice a headache on day two which hung around for a while but left when I completed the trial. Full disclosure - I actually finished the trial a day early because of the headache. I also felt a bit more clumsy than usual during the trial, but as I was on the look out for symptoms was I being oversensitive? It is the season for colds and bugs and the rest of the household felt unwell too.
How do we control for outside factors this winter bugs or hay fever? Well there is one completely objective measure, the good ol’…
PKU Blood test
The morning after I finished my Sphere trial I took the usual blood spots and sent them off for testing. I was expecting a high result and was already thinking that, while Sphere is the tastiest supplement I've come across, it is sadly not for me. However, as a scientist would say “never speculate ahead of results.”
Woah my blood results were good! 439 μg /L which is well with in the EU guidelines and also within my own personal max where I feel best. So it would appear that the headache wasn’t from too much protein...
Sphere trial conclusion
Inconclusive! :-) Ah Science, there is always more to learn!
I liked Sphere and my bloods didn’t spike despite a bit of trouble I had during the trial. While my mini trial was inconclusive, I agreed with my dieticians to switch half of my supplement needs to Sphere. This means I can trial it over a longer period of time with more blood tests and see how things go.Thanks to the delivery services, switching has proved very easy.
Please let me know how you get on with switching supplements, or delivery services.