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How Skepticism (not Cynicism) Can Raise Scientific Standards and Reform the Health and Wellness Industry

Nicholas B. Tiller and Stuart M. Phillips

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Dietary β-Alanine Intake Assessed by Food Records Does Not Associate With Muscle Carnosine Content in Healthy, Active, Omnivorous Men and Women

Nathalia Saffioti Rezende, Giulia Cazetta Bestetti, Luana Farias de Oliveira, Bruna Caruso Mazzolani, Fabiana Infante Smaira, Alina Dumas, Paul Swinton, Bryan Saunders, and Eimear Dolan

β-Alanine (BA) is one of the most widely used sport supplements, due to its capacity to improve high-intensity exercise performance by increasing muscle carnosine (MCarn) content, and consequently, the buffering capacity of the muscle. BA is also available in a variety of animal foods, but little is currently known about the influence of dietary BA intake on MCarn. The aim of the current study was to compile a detailed summary of available data on the BA content of commonly consumed foods, and to explore whether associations could be detected between self-reported dietary BA intake and skeletal MCarn in a group of 60 healthy, active, omnivorous men and women. Dietary BA intake was assessed via 3-day food records, and MCarn content assessed by high-performance liquid chromatography. A series of univariate and multivariate linear regression models were used to explore associations between estimated dietary BA and MCarn. No evidence of associations between dietary BA intake and MCarn were identified, with effect sizes close to zero calculated from models accounting for key demographic variables (f 2  ≤ 0.02 for all analyses). These findings suggest that capacity to increase MCarn via dietary strategies may be limited, and that supplementation may be required to induce increases of the magnitude required to improve performance.

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Within-Subject Variability and the Influence of Exercise Training History on the Resting Plasma Metabolome in Men

Ian A.J. Darragh, Lorraine O’Driscoll, and Brendan Egan

This study investigated within-subject variability in the circulating metabolome under controlled conditions, and whether divergent exercise training backgrounds were associated with alterations in the circulating metabolome assessed in resting samples. Thirty-seven men comprising of endurance athletes (END; body mass, 71.0 ± 6.8 kg; fat-free mass index, 16.9 ± 1.1 kg/m2), strength athletes (STR; 94.5 ± 8.8 kg; 23.0 ± 1.8 kg/m2), and recreationally active controls (CON; 77.6 ± 7.7 kg; 18.1 ± 1.0 kg/m2) provided blood samples after an overnight fast on two separate occasions controlled for time of day of sampling, recent dietary intake, time since last meal, and time since last exercise training session. A targeted profile of metabolites, performed using liquid chromatography and mass spectrometry on plasma samples, identified 166 individual metabolites and metabolite features, which were analyzed with intraclass correlation coefficients, a multilevel principal component analysis, and univariate t tests adjusted for multiple comparisons. The median intraclass correlation coefficient was .49, with 46 metabolites displaying good reliability and 31 metabolites displaying excellent reliability. No difference in the abundance of any individual metabolite was identified within groups when compared between visits, but a combined total of 44 metabolites were significantly different (false discovery rate <0.05) between groups (END vs. CON, 42 metabolites; STR vs. CON, 10 metabolites; and END vs. STR, five metabolites). Under similar measurement conditions, the reliability of resting plasma metabolite concentrations varies largely at the level of individual metabolites with ∼48% of metabolites displaying good-to-excellent reliability. However, a history of exercise training was associated with alterations in the abundance of ∼28% of metabolites in the targeted profile employed in this study.

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Longitudinal Changes in Body Composition and Resting Metabolic Rate in Male Professional Flat Jockeys: Preliminary Outcomes and Implications for Future Research Directions

George Wilson, Carl Langan-Evans, Dan Martin, Andreas M. Kasper, James P. Morton, and Graeme L. Close

Jockeys are unique given that they make weight daily and, therefore, often resort to fasting and dehydration. Through increasing daily food frequency (during energy deficit), we have reported short-term improvements in jockey’s body composition. While these changes were observed over 6–12 weeks with food provided, it is unclear whether such improvements can be maintained over an extended period during free-living conditions. We, therefore, assessed jockeys over 5 years using dual X-ray absorptiometry, resting metabolic rate, and hydration measurements. Following dietary and exercise advice, jockeys reduced fat mass from baseline of 7.1 ± 1.4 kg to 6.1 ± 0.7 kg and 6.1 ± 0.6 kg (p < .001) at Years 1 and 5, respectively. In addition, fat-free mass was maintained with resting metabolic rate increasing significantly from 1,500 ± 51 kcal/day at baseline to 1,612 ± 95 kcal/day and 1,620 ± 92 kcal/day (p < .001) at Years 1 and 5, respectively. Urine osmolality reduced from 816 ± 236 mOsmol/L at baseline to 564 ± 175 mOsmol/L and 524 ± 156 mOsmol/L (p < .001) at Years 1 and 5, respectively. The percent of jockeys consuming a regular breakfast significantly increased from 48% at baseline to 83% (p = .009) and 87% (p = .003) at Years 1 and 5, alongside regular lunch from 35% to 92% (p < .001) and 96% (p < .001) from baseline to Years 1 and 5, respectively. In conclusion, we report that improved body composition can be maintained in free-living jockeys over a 5-year period when appropriate guidance has been provided.

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Abstracts From the 2022 International Sport + Exercise Nutrition Conference

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Volume 33 (2023): Issue S1 (Mar 2023)

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Volume 33 (2023): Issue 2 (Mar 2023)

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Comment on: “Creatine Monohydrate Supplementation, but not Creatyl-L-Leucine Increased Muscle Creatine Content in Healthy Young Adults: A Double-Blind Placebo-Controlled Trial”

Guillermo Escalante and Dean St. Mart

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Reply to G. Escalante and D. St. Mart

Andrew T. Askow and Nicholas A. Burd

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Chronic Statin Treatment Does Not Impair Exercise Lipolysis or Fat Oxidation in Exercise-Trained Individuals With Obesity and Dyslipidemia

Laura Alvarez-Jimenez, Alfonso Moreno-Cabañas, Felix Morales-Palomo, Juan F. Ortega, and Ricardo Mora-Rodriguez

Objective: To determine whether statin medication in individuals with obesity, dyslipidemia, and metabolic syndrome affects their capacity to mobilize and oxidize fat during exercise. Methods: Twelve individuals with metabolic syndrome pedaled during 75 min at 54 ± 13% V ˙ O 2 max (5.7 ± 0.5 metabolic equivalents) while taking statins (STATs) or after 96-hr statin withdrawal (PLAC) in a randomized double-blind fashion. Results: At rest, PLAC increased low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (i.e., STAT 2.55 ± 0.96 vs. PLAC 3.16 ± 0.76 mmol/L; p = .004) and total cholesterol blood levels (i.e., STAT 4.39 ± 1.16 vs. PLAC 4.98 ± 0.97 mmol/L; p = .008). At rest, fat oxidation (0.99 ± 0.34 vs. 0.76 ± 0.37 μmol·kg−1·min−1 for STAT vs. PLAC; p = .068) and the rates of plasma appearance of glucose and glycerol (i.e., Ra glucose–glycerol) were not affected by PLAC. After 70 min of exercise, fat oxidation was similar between trials (2.94 ± 1.56 vs. 3.06 ± 1.94 μmol·kg−1·min−1, STA vs. PLAC; p = .875). PLAC did not alter the rates of disappearance of glucose in plasma during exercise (i.e., 23.9 ± 6.9 vs. 24.5 ± 8.2 μmol·kg−1·min−1 for STAT vs. PLAC; p = .611) or the rate of plasma appearance of glycerol (i.e., 8.5 ± 1.9 vs. 7.9 ± 1.8 μmol·kg−1·min−1 for STAT vs. PLAC; p = .262). Conclusions: In patients with obesity, dyslipidemia, and metabolic syndrome, statins do not compromise their ability to mobilize and oxidize fat at rest or during prolonged, moderately intense exercise (i.e., equivalent to brisk walking). In these patients, the combination of statins and exercise could help to better manage their dyslipidemia.