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Role of Glucose - Glycogen Replenishment

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Role of Glucose - Glycogen Replenishment

Post by Canuck Singh on Mon Mar 08, 2010 2:35 am

Glucose and muscle glycogen (the storage form of glucose)

The main source of fuel during intense weight training. Low muscle glycogen levels can limit your work capacity and the muscles ability to recover. If muscles get too low on glycogen, a catabolic (muscle breakdown) response results. Some research demonstrates that the amount of glucose stored in muscle, influences muscle growth.

Researchers at Appalachian State University have now shown that drinking a carbohydrate supplement during your body building workouts can prevent a reduction in valuable muscle glycogen stores. In this study a group of 8 experienced male bodybuilders consumed approx 1gm per kg of bodyweight of a liquid carbohydrate supplement or a placebo prior to, and during their weight training workout. Muscle biopsies were taken from the athletes and used to determine glucose and glycogen concentrations in muscle fibers after training and consumption of the carb supplement. Analysis of the fibers revealed the body builders that consumed the carb supplement before and during training actually prevented a decline in glycogen levels in muscle. For those athletes wishing to enhance muscle mass and muscular performance, this data is invaluable.

It demonstrates that if carbohydrates are taken at the correct time, they will be transported directly to muscle. This study showed that a carbohydrate supplement taken before and during training go directly towards replenishing muscle glycogen levels. Many dedicated bodybuilders won't eat or drink simple carbohydrates for fear of the excess energy being stored in fat cells. That's partly true, however, if simple carbohydrates such as those found in supplement drinks, are consumed during training, they can actually maximize your muscle building efforts.

Ref Carbohydrate supplementation attenuates muscle glycogen loss during acute bouts of resistant exercise. Int. J. Sport Nutr. Exerc. Metab. 10(3):326-339,2000.

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Glycogen Loading
Glycogen loading is the high intake of carbohydrates after exhaustive exercise. Glycogen loading enhances performance in endurance events and ensures bodybuilders step on stage with full, rock-hard muscles. Even if you're not a competitive bodybuilder/athlete, glycogen loading fills muscles with energy producing carbohydrates that increase your work capacity and enhance growth.

A couple of years ago, research showed muscle glycogen uptake is enhanced by creatine supplementation. This latest study demonstrates that creatine supplementation enhances glycogen synthesis in muscles when athletes attempt to glycogen load.

In this clever study athletes performed two separate bouts of exhaustive, glycogen-depleting exercise in their right leg (the left leg was used as a comparative control), followed by three days of high carbohydrate intake in an attempt to load the muscles with glycogen. One of these bouts of carbohydrate depletion and loading phases was performed after a bout of high dose creatine supplementation.

The results of muscle biopsy fiber analysis demonstrated that muscles with a high creatine concentration (from supplementation) facilitate a more rapid glycogen accumulation. The creatine supplementation accelerated glycogen synthesis in muscles. When the athletes used creatine before they loaded, the result was a higher accumulation of muscle glycogen.

The researchers speculated that because creatine enhances muscle cell volume, this increased the transport/accumulation of glycogen within muscle. Enhanced glycogen accumulation is another example of creatine's anabolic effects.

Intense training sessions makes muscle cells highly sensitive to glucose and carbohydrates. So the best time to consume carbohydrates and load your muscles with glycogen is right after training. The results of this study indicate that creatine acts synergistically with carbohydrates to accelerate glycogen synthesis and accumulation within muscle.

Bodybuilders can be real smart and add this information to the other recent finding of glutamine's muscle glycogen stimulating effects and apply it to their nutrition program. Taking glutamine and creatine together after training will promote an enhanced anabolic effect within muscle by hyper-saturating cells with glycogen.

Take your creatine and glutamine with carbohydrates in the hours immediately after training. This will trigger an increase in muscle cell volume, a greater rate of protein synthesis, better recovery and faster results from those intense workouts.

Ref: Med. Sci. Sports Exerc. 33;7:1096-1100, 2001.

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AS their research is extensive, I will provide a Link here: http://www.gssiweb.com/Article_List.asp ... d=9&code=1

All of the mentioned products are the same really, and there is a reason why the NFL gives out this drink during the long 3 hour american/canadian football matches.

* In regards to as to whether or not you should be consuming it. Ideally you want to save money, so if you can purchase the bulk sachets you will not have to spend so much on it. For your body weight (75kg), and depending on your training level you could consume about 30g of carbohydrate during your workout. OF course this varies based on intensity. Some drinks have way too much, and I would say that if your workouts are really intense that they have you sweating and puffing at the end, you can get away with up to 75g of sugars no problem. I will post more research that showed that carbohydrate labelled with a tracer does not end up as body fat, and it goes straight to muscle.
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