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Int J Sports Med. 2008 Dec;29(12):1003-9. doi: 10.1055/s-2008-1038753. Epub 2008 Jul 9.

Pre-exercise carbohydrate status influences carbohydrate-mediated attenuation of post-exercise cytokine responses.

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Department of Physiology, Australian Institute of Sport, Belconnen, Australia.


Most studies investigating the effects of acute carbohydrate (CHO) ingestion on post-exercise cytokine responses have involved fasted athletes. This study characterised the effects of acute CHO beverage ingestion preceded by consumption of a CHO-containing pre-exercise meal. Sixteen highly-trained male cyclists/triathletes (age: 30.6 +/- 5.6 y; V O (2max): 64.8 +/- 4.7 ml . kg . min (-1) [mean +/- SD]) undertook two cycle ergometry trials involving randomised consumption of a 10 % CHO beverage (15 mL . kg (-1) . hr (-1)) or water (H (2)O). Trials were undertaken 2 h after a breakfast providing 2.1 g CHO . kg (-1) body mass (BM) (48 kJ . kg (-1) BM) and consisted of 100 min steady state cycle ergometry at 70 % V O (2max) followed by a time trial of approximately 30 min duration. Blood samples were collected pre-, post- and 1 h post-exercise for measurement of Interleukin (IL)-6, IL-8, IL-10 and IL-1ra. Time-trial performance was not substantially different between CHO and H (2)O trials (4.5 %, p = 0.42). Neither IL-6 nor IL-8 responses were substantially reduced in the CHO compared to the H (2)O trial. There was a substantial reduction in IL-10 (32 %, p = 0.05) and IL-1ra (43 %, p = 0.02) responses at 1 h post-exercise with CHO compared to H (2)O ingestion. In conclusion, the previously shown attenuating effects of CHO ingestion during exercise on cytokine responses appear reduced when athletes consume a CHO-containing pre-exercise meal.

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