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Sport focused mumpreneur launches UK protein bar for kids

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by Startacus Admin

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From financial services to sports nutrition for children - one mumpreneur's startup journey to inspire the next generation of athletes to make healthy choices that are sustainable for life


ProYouth picInspiration struck for competitive sport mum Marina Wegorek when she couldn’t find a handy and healthy snack to give her children before and after training. She teamed up with expert nutritional scientists - and invented one herself.

Having spent over 18 years in the financial services sector, Marina quit her job as an accountant turned banker to set up a sports nutrition business.

Marina Wegorek, mother of two and founder of ProYouth Nutrition, saw the opportunity last year when her daughter Ava joined a competitive swimming club. During her daughter’s first competitive swimming competition, Marina was shocked to see canteens offering sweets, chocolate and energy drinks.

She saw a real need for alternative options for active children and sought the help of nutritional experts to develop the world’s first protein bar for children. She began working with a team of leading applied sports and exercise scientists, life science practitioners and nutritional experts to develop a range of innovative snack bars suitable for pre-activity energy fuel and post activity replenishment of the depleted energy stores essential to exercise performance.

With both Marina and her husband as regular gym users, she was aware of the wide range of snacks and supplements targeting the adult fitness industry, but none that catered to the training needs of children.

Being one of only six out of fifty newly founded businesses to win funding and support from the European Regional Development Fund and the London Agri-Food Innovation Clinic, Marina was able to further her research in more detail with a specific focus on how the nutritional needs of adults and children vary and differ.

She discovered that by glycogen stores (the body’s energy reserves) were a key difference between adults and children and that by increasing them she could also increase exercise performance in children.

proyouth imageYounger athletes were shown to store less glycogen than their adult counterparts, resulting in an earlier onset of fatigue. Through her more scientific studies, Marina also found that when the body ingests refined sugar, it has a high insulin response in order to remove the glucose from the blood which it deems as a ‘life threatening’ intrusion.

It was here the prevalence of high performing sports people and type-two diabetes came at no surprise to Marina. The more she researched the more she realised the need and importance of developing something that can safely be consumed by children. Something that was nutritionally rich and made with whole food ingredients and natural proteins - minus the artificial sweeteners, sugars and cheap ingredients that contain free radicals.

Seeking to fill this gap in the market, Marina founded her own company that caters to the needs of active youngsters with the ethos of encouraging a more positive attitude towards health, fitness, nutrition and in turn fuelling the next generation of young people to be their best.

ProYouth’s purpose is to inspire the next generation of athletes to make healthy choices that are sustainable for life. The company is motivated to drive change and believes that the choices made now will help young and aspiring athletes understand the importance of nutrition and regulating their energy in their daily lives, now and forever.

Marina adds that even during these unsettling times it’s the positive feedback, messages that she receives from the small organic community of real athletes, parents and coaches that keeps her motivated.






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Published on: 16th June 2020

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