Effect of Drink Carbohydrate Content on Postexercise Gastric Emptying, Rehydration, and the Calculation of Net Fluid Balance

in International Journal of Sport Nutrition and Exercise Metabolism
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The purpose of this study was to examine the gastric emptying and rehydration effects of hypotonic and hypertonic glucose-electrolyte drinks after exercise-induced dehydration. Eight healthy males lost ~1.8% body mass by intermittent cycling and rehydrated (150% of body mass loss) with a hypotonic 2% (2% trial) or a hypertonic 10% (10% trial) glucose-electrolyte drink over 60 min. Blood and urine samples were taken at preexercise, postexercise, and 60, 120, 180, and 240 min postexercise. Gastric and test drink volume were determined 15, 30, 45, 60, 90, and 120 min postexercise. At the end of the gastric sampling period 0.3% (2% trial) and 42.1% (10% trial; p < .001) of the drinks remained in the stomach. Plasma volume was lower (p < .01) and serum osmolality was greater (p < .001) at 60 and 120 min during the 10% trial. At 240 min, 52% (2% trial) and 64% (10% trial; p < .001) of the drinks were retained. Net fluid balance was greater from 120 min during the 10% trial (p < .001). When net fluid balance was corrected for the volume of fluid in the stomach, it was greater at 60 and 120 min during the 2% trial (p < .001). These results suggest that the reduced urine output following ingestion of a hypertonic rehydration drink might be mediated by a slower rate of gastric emptying, but the slow gastric emptying of such solutions makes rehydration efficiency difficult to determine in the hours immediately after drinking, compromising the calculation of net fluid balance.

Clayton and James are with the School of Sport, Exercise and Health Sciences, Loughborough University, Loughborough, UK. Evans is with the School of Healthcare Science, Manchester Metropolitan University, Manchester, UK.