18th annual ECSS Congress Barcelona/Spain, June 24 – 27 2013
Title of the paper: Carbohydrate: Carbohydrate intake guidelines and low versus high debate
Authors: Jeukendrup, A.
Institution: University of Birmingham
Department: School of Sport and Exercise Sciences
Country: United Kingdom

It has been known for a long time that carbohydrate is the main fuel for athletes in the vast majority of events. There is much discussion about training with low carbohydrate and training with high carbohydrate availability. Carbohydrate availability is increased by consuming carbohydrate in the hours or days prior to the session, intake during exercise, and refueling during recovery between sessions. This is important for the competition setting or for high-intensity training where optimal performance is desired. Carbohydrate intake during exercise should be scaled according to the characteristics of the event. During sustained high-intensity sports lasting ~1 h, small amounts of carbohydrate, including even mouth-rinsing, enhance performance via central nervous system effects. While 30-60 g/h is an appropriate target for sports of longer duration, events 2.5 h may benefit from higher intakes of up to 90 g/h. Products containing special blends of different carbohydrates may maximize absorption of carbohydrate at such high rates. In real life, athletes undertake training sessions with varying carbohydrate availability. Whether implementing additional train-low strategies to increase the training adaptation leads to enhanced performance in well-trained individuals is unclear. It is clear that both training low and raining high approaches seem to have some advantages and disadvantages. But how do you decide how to approach training? In this presentation the following topics will be addressed in particular: 1. Current carbohydrate intake guidelines 2. A brief summary of the evidence supporting these guidelines 3. A discussion of the train high versus train low debate 4. A recommendation on how to incorporate train high/train low into a training program

Topic: Nutrition
Keyword I: sports nutrition
Keyword II: guidelines
Keyword III: carbohydrate

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