Effects of moderate and high glycemic index meals on metabolism and exercise performance

  • John P. Kirwan
    Affiliations
    From the Noll Physiological Research Center, Penn State University, University Park, PA; Departments of Reproductive Biology and Nutrition, Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine at MetroHealth Medical Center, Cleveland, OH; Department of Foods and Nutrition, Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN; and the Nutrition, Metabolism, and Exercise Division, University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, Little Rock, AR.
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  • Deanna Cyr-Campbell
    Affiliations
    From the Noll Physiological Research Center, Penn State University, University Park, PA; Departments of Reproductive Biology and Nutrition, Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine at MetroHealth Medical Center, Cleveland, OH; Department of Foods and Nutrition, Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN; and the Nutrition, Metabolism, and Exercise Division, University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, Little Rock, AR.
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  • Wayne W. Campbell
    Affiliations
    From the Noll Physiological Research Center, Penn State University, University Park, PA; Departments of Reproductive Biology and Nutrition, Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine at MetroHealth Medical Center, Cleveland, OH; Department of Foods and Nutrition, Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN; and the Nutrition, Metabolism, and Exercise Division, University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, Little Rock, AR.
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  • John Scheiber
    Affiliations
    From the Noll Physiological Research Center, Penn State University, University Park, PA; Departments of Reproductive Biology and Nutrition, Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine at MetroHealth Medical Center, Cleveland, OH; Department of Foods and Nutrition, Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN; and the Nutrition, Metabolism, and Exercise Division, University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, Little Rock, AR.
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  • William J. Evans
    Affiliations
    From the Noll Physiological Research Center, Penn State University, University Park, PA; Departments of Reproductive Biology and Nutrition, Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine at MetroHealth Medical Center, Cleveland, OH; Department of Foods and Nutrition, Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN; and the Nutrition, Metabolism, and Exercise Division, University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, Little Rock, AR.
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      Abstract

      The purpose of this study was to determine whether pre-exercise ingestion of meals with moderate and high glycemic indexes (GI) affects glucose availability during exercise and exercise performance time. Six male volunteers (22 [plusmn] 1 years; 80.4 [plusmn] 3.7 kg; Vo2peak, 54.3 [plusmn] 1.2 ml [middot] kg[minus ]1 [middot] min[minus ]1) ingested 75 g of carbohydrate in the form of 2 different breakfast cereals, rolled oats (moderate GI, [sim ]61; MOD-GI) or puffed rice (high GI, [sim ]82; HI-GI), combined with 300 mL of water; or water alone (control). The trials were randomized, and the meals were ingested 45 minutes before the subjects performed cycling exercise (60% Vo2peak) to exhaustion. Venous blood samples were drawn to measure glucose, free fatty acids (FFAs), glycerol, insulin (INS), epinephrine (EPI) and norepinephrine (NE) concentrations. A muscle biopsy specimen was obtained from the vastus lateralis before the meal and immediately after exercise for glycogen determination. Before exercise, both test meals elicited significant (P [lt ] .05) hyperglycemia and hyperinsulinemia compared with control. The glycemic response was higher (P [lt ] .05) at the start of exercise after the HI-GI meal than after the control. During exercise, plasma glucose levels were higher (P [lt ] .05) at 60 (5.2 [plusmn] 0.1, 4.2 [plusmn] 0.2, and 4.6 [plusmn] 0.1 mmol [middot] L[minus ]1) and 90 (4.8 [plusmn] 0.1, 4.1 [plusmn] 0.1, and 4.3 [plusmn] 0.1 mmol [middot] L[minus ]1) minutes after the MOD-GI meal than after either the HI-GI or control. Total carbohydrate oxidation was greater (P [lt ] .05) during the MOD-GI trial than in control and was directly correlated with exercise performance time (r = .95, P [lt ] .0001). Pre-exercise plasma FFA levels were suppressed (P [lt ] .05) 30 and 45 minutes after ingestion of the HI-GI meal and 45 minutes after the MOD-GI meal compared with control. At 30, 60, and 120 minutes of exercise, FFAs remained suppressed (P [lt ] .05) for both test meals compared with control. At exhaustion, plasma glucose, INS, FFA, glycerol, EPI, and NE levels and muscle glycogen use were not different for all trials. Exercise time was prolonged (P [lt ] .05) after the MOD-GI meal compared with control, but the HI-GI trial was not different from control (MOD-GI, 165 [plusmn] 11; HI-GI, 141 [plusmn] 8; control, 134 [plusmn] 13 minutes). Thus, in contrast to the HI-GI meal or control, the MOD-GI breakfast cereal ingested 45 minutes before exercise enhanced performance time, maintained euglycemia for a longer period during exercise, and resulted in greater total carbohydrate oxidation during the exercise bout. We conclude that a MOD-GI meal provides a significant performance and metabolic advantage when consumed 45 minutes before exercise.
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