Performance nutrition helPs deciPher the
latest research to help you optimise your
training diet and supplementation
BY James Collins
TaURine: PeRFoRMance
enhanceR oR a load oF BUll?
Taurine is a sulphonic amino taurine did not affect perceived have failed to find such a performance
that taurine was first extracted from distance runners, who undertook a minimum of 45 miles of running each for maximising taurine levels in the occasions and both times completed the possible performance benefits Amino Acids has found that an acute contained either a 1000 mg dose intake of taurine improved 3 km or an empty placebo capsule. Capillary blood lactate was Main Findings
The main finding from the paper was after completion of the timetrial. that 7 of the 8 runners completed Take-hoMe Message
expired gas or heart rate were found. exercise may improve athletic Additionally, the prior intake of Further research is required before both caffeine and taurine, the fact pre-exercise. There is, nevertheless, means that they can cause gastro- reFerenCe:
Sparks SA (2012) the effect of acute
taurine ingestion on 3-km running
performance in trained middle-distance
runners.Amino Acids. [Epub ahead of print]
caFFeine: key To RedUcing
The PeRcePTion oF eFFoRT?
caffeine has been shown to improve part in the study, which involved a total of weight dose in the present study) can
three separate visits to the laboratory. result in a number of side effects, such as responsible for these effects are not yet fully understood. The ergogenic effects of 30-minute exercise session was Athletes should also be mindful that high caffeine have been previously attributed doses of caffeine could potentially mask to adenosine antagonism (stimulating the ergometer. These trials were completed leading to a greater risk of overtraining either 6 mg/kg bodyweight of caffeine or during high volumes of training. It is vital maltodextrin (placebo). Participants were that athletes experiment with different instructed to avoid alcohol and caffeine analgesic (pain-relieving) effects blunting for 4 days prior to each testing session. sessions in order to establish a dose that perceived exertion during exercise, could Participants were well rested and published in the European Journal of Applied Physiology has found that the heart rate, RPE (overall), RPE (legs) and ergogenic dose. M&F
reduce the perceived effort (or exertion) of minutes during the exercise session and a set exercise session. RPE (session) was assessed 30 minutes after cessation of exercise.
Main Findings
This double-blind study found that, when
Take-hoMe Message
Athletes involved in a variety of sports can benefit from the intake of caffeine before exertion (RPE) over a 30-minute exercise training, due to its ability to not only participants reported lower RPE specific to their legs and breathing after consum- ing caffeine. It is important to highlight, have an analgesic effect during exercise, reFerenCe:
Killen LG, Green JM, O’Neal EK, McIntosh JR, Hornsby J, Coates TE (2012) effects
known side effects of caffeine (feelings of associated with this stimulant.
of caffeine on session ratings of
Responses to caffeine intake are highly perceived exertion. European Journal of
Applied Physiology. [Epub ahead of print] distress), which were not present in the individual and therefore the optimal dose Performance Nutrition is a unique will differ between athletes. Those habitu- London-based consultancy, providing comprehensive support to elite and signiFicanT
ally consuming lots of caffeine (e.g. large recreational athletes. Director, James daily coffee consumption) will likely need Collins, is a leading Sport and Exercise MeThodology
Nutritionist, working with Great Britain a slightly higher dose to achieve the same Elite Sports in preparation for the Olympic Fifteen healthy male and female individu- ergogenic effect. Importantly, a high dose Games and as Head Nutritionist for Arsenal FC. For further information visit als with varying aerobic fitness levels took of caffeine (such as the 6 mg/kg body-


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