The Universal Animal Pak is a multivitamin and mineral supplement designed to support a male athlete's nutritional needs. It is possible to experience some side effects when taking this product, such as an upset stomach or an allergic reaction. Because it contains a large quantity of pills, it can be difficult to swallow the entire serving. Also, the dose of vitamins it contains are relatively high and can cause bright-colored urine.
The recommended Universal Animal Pak serving is 11 relatively large pills, or 22 pills daily. Because of this, choking and discomfort are both possibilities. The dosages are higher than the FDA's recommended daily allowances because, according to Universal, hard-training athletes subject their body to more stress and place more demands on it than a typical person. Large doses of vitamins can also be problematic. According to eMedicine, in 2007 the American Association of Poison Control Centers' National Poison Data System documented over 58,000 acute or chronic vitamin overdoses with 17 major adverse outcomes and 1 death. Nearly all were documented with people up to age 19 years old. While uncommon, severe reactions can occur when large dosages of vitamins are consumed.
Athletes who consume Animal Paks may notice that shortly after taking the pak they have an upset stomach. Universal recommends taking each pak with a meal. This can help the vitamins and minerals be absorbed by your body and lessen the chance of an upset stomach.
The pills in the Animal Paks contain milk, bovine and soy among the ingredients. They are also manufactured in a facility that uses milk, soy, eggs and peanuts, so if you are allergic to any of those ingredients, consumption of Animal Paks may lead to an allergic reaction.
One of the first things you may notice when taking Animal Paks is that your urine will quickly turn a bright yellowish color. This is normal and harmless. According to ABC Bodybuilding, the reason your urine changes color is because it is your body simply getting rid of the excess vitamins, specifically B-2, or Riboflavin. Riboflavin is a fluorescent yellow compound that is part of the B-vitamin complex. By increasing your water intake, you can lighten the color of your urine if this concerns you.
The "performance complex" is the part of the product that is most often misunderstood. People tend to associate a product that is intended for male bodybuilders with some type of anabolic steroid component. This is not the case with Animal Paks. The performance complex primarily addresses liver and heart health. It also includes some vitamins and amino acids that support the brain and energy production throughout the day. Uni-Liver and milk thistle are included because Universal assumes people using this product have a higher protein intake, which can be hard on your liver. Carnitine is an amino acid that converts fat to energy and is included to help improve body appearance as well as increase energy levels. Inositol and Oriental ginseng both support energy production and brain health. Hawthorne berry is an herb that is traditionally used to support heart health and circulation.