MCTs + Carbs = Greater Performance (*Study)

3FuelInterlockWhat happens when you add MCTs to a carbohydrate beverage, and sip it throughout your event? You’ll get reater performance over simply using a carb drink alone. Check it out:

J Appl Physiol. 1996 Jun;80(6):2217-25.

Effects of medium-chain triglyceride ingestion on fuel metabolism and cycling performance.

Van Zyl CG, Lambert EV, Hawley JA, Noakes TD, Dennis SC.

Source

 

Liberty Life Chair of Exercise and Sport Science, University of Cape Town Medical School, Observatory, South Africa.

Abstract

On three occasions separated by 10 days, six endurance-trained cyclists rode for 2 h at 60% of peak O2 uptake and then performed a simulated 40-km time trial (T-trial). During the rides, the subjects ingested a total of 2 liters of a [U-14C]glucose-labeled beverage containing a random order of either 10% glucose [carbohydrate (CHO)], 4.3% medium-chain triglycerides (MCTs); or 10% glucose + 4.3% MCTs (CHO+MCT). Although replacing CHO with MCTs slowed the T-trials from 66.8 +/- 0.4 (SE) to 72.1 +/- 0.6 min (P < 0.001), adding MCTs to CHO improved the T-trials from 66.8 +/- 0.4 to 65.1 +/- 0.5 min (P < 0.05). Faster T-trials in the CHO+MCT trial than in the CHO trial were associated with increased final circulating concentrations of free fatty acids (0.58 +/- 0.09 vs. 0.36 +/- 0.06 mmol/l; P < 0.05) and ketones (1.51 +/- 0.25 vs. 0.51 +/- 0.07 mmol/l; P < 0.01) and decreased final circulating concentrations of glucose (5.2 +/- 0.2 vs. 6.3 +/- 0.3 mmol/l; P < 0.01) and lactate (1.9 +/- 0.4 vs. 3.7 +/- 0.5 mmol/l; P < 0.05). Adding MCTs to ingested CHO reduced total CHO oxidation rates from 14 +/- 1 to 10 +/- 1 mmol/min at 2 h and from 17 +/- 1 to 14 +/- 1 mmol/min in the T-trial (P < 0.01), without affecting the corresponding approximately 5 and approximately 7 mmol/min rates of [14C]glucose oxidation. These data suggest that MCT oxidation decreased the direct and/or indirect (via lactate) oxidation of muscle glycogen. A reduced reliance on CHO oxidation at a given O2 uptake is similar to an endurance-training effect, and that may explain the improved T-trial performances.

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