Popular Dietary Supplements for Sports Nutrition Research

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1. Carbohydrates:

Carbohydrates are the most important components to optimise training and performance. Carbohydrates are essential for energy (ATP) generation by aerobic and anaerobic metabolism. Carbohydrates are stored as glycogen in the liver and muscles. Dietary carbohydrate is critical to restore muscle glycogen levels between training sessions and to prepare for endurance competition. For optimal carbohydrate availability, varied combinations of types of carbohydrates (high, mid and low glycemic carbohydrates) are recommend prior to, during and after intense exercise.

2. Proteins and Peptides

Proteins are required for a speedy recovery during intense training sessions. It seems that adding protein to carbohydrate drinks speeds up glycogen recovery over the first 40 minutes. However, more research is required to determine how different types of protein and peptides as well as the timing of protein intake, aid recovery following exercise.

3. Vitamins:

Vitamins are essential for regulating metabolic processes and energy synthesis. In particular vitamin C and E are believed to help athletes train harder by reducing oxidative damage. Vitamins C and E can counteract reactive oxygen species.

4. Creatine monohydrate:

Creatine monohydrate is one of the most effective supplements to help increase muscle mass during training and is possibly beneficial in preventing injury. Dietary Creatine supplementation may increase the level of muscle phosphocreatine (PCr), a high - energy phosphate with a key role in re-supplying ATP during muscle activity.

5. Green Tea:

Green tea increases energy expenditure by stimulating thermogenesis. Green tea is rich in catechin polyphenols and caffeine. The main catechin polyphenol indicated to stimulate diet-induced thermogenesis is catechin epigallocatechin gallate or EGCG.

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ISSN exercise & sport nutrition review: research and recommendations. Kreider et al. 2010
Sport and Exercise Nutrition. Lanham et al. (editor). Publication by the Nutrition Society. (Wiley-Blackwell).