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Int J Sports Med. 2014 Mar;35(3):265-9. doi: 10.1055/s-0033-1348254. Epub 2013 Sep 10.

Improved gross efficiency during long duration submaximal cycling following a short-term high carbohydrate diet.

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Sports Science, Tourism & Leisure, Canterbury Christ Church University, Canterbury, United Kingdom.
Centre for Sport Studies, University of Kent, Chatham, United Kingdom.


To assess the effect of dietary manipulation on gross efficiency (GE), 15 trained male cyclists completed 3×2 h tests at submaximal exercise intensity (60% Maximal Minute Power). Using a randomized, crossover design participants consumed an isoenergetic diet (~4 000 in the 3 days preceding each test, that was either high in carbohydrate (HighCHO, [70% of the total energy derived from carbohydrate, 20% fat, 10% protein]), low in carbohydrate (LowCHO, [70% fat, 20% carbohydrate, 10% protein]) or contained a moderate amount of carbohydrate (ModCHO, [45% carbohydrate, 45% fat, 10% protein]). GE along with blood lactate and glucose were assessed every 30 min, and heart rate was measured at 5 s intervals throughout. Mean GE was significantly greater following the HighCHO than the ModCHO diet (HighCHO=20.4%±0.1%, ModCHO=19.6±0.2%; P<0.001). Additionally, HighCHO GE was significantly greater after 25 min (P=0.015) and 85 min (P=0.021) than in the LowCHO condition. Heart rate responses in the HighCHO condition were significantly lower than during the LowCHO tests (P=0.005). Diet had no effect on blood glucose or lactate (P>0.05). This study suggests that before the measurement of gross efficiency, participants' diet should be controlled and monitored to ensure the validity of the results obtained.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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