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Original Research Gastric Emptying and Intestinal Absorption of a Low-Carbohydrate Sport Drink During Exercise

The purpose of this study was to determine if lowering carbohydrate (CHO) concentration in a sport drink influences gastric emptying, intestinal absorption, or performance during cycle ergometry (85 min, 60% VO2peak). Five subjects (25 ± 1 y, 61.5 ± 2.1 mL · kg-1 · min-1 VO2peak) ingested a 3% CHO, 6% CHO, or a water placebo (WP) beverage during exercise. Gastric emptying was determined by repeated double sampling and intestinal absorption by segmental perfusion. Total solute absorption and plasma glucose was greater for 6% CHO; however, neither gastric emptying, intestinal water absorption, or 3-mi time trial performance (7:58 ± 0:33 min, 8:13 ± 0:25 min, and 8:25 ± 0:29 min, respectively, for 6% CHO, 3% CHO, and WP) differed among solutions. These results indicate lowering the CHO concentration of a sport drink from 6% CHO does not enhance gastric emptying, intestinal water absorption, or time trial performance, but reduces CHO and total solute absorption.

Authors: Jennifer Rogers, Robert W. Summers, G. Patrick Lambert

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