The effect of carbohydrate ingestion on the Interleukin-6 response to a 90-minute run time trial

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)186-194
Number of pages9
JournalInternational Journal of Sports Physiology and Performance
Volume4
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2009
Externally publishedYes
Fatigue is a predictable outcome of prolonged physical activity; yet its biological cause remains uncertain. During exercise, a polypeptide messenger molecule interleukin- 6 (IL-6) is actively produced. Previously, it has been demonstrated that administration of recombinant IL-6 (rhIL-6) impairs 10-km run performance and heightened sensation of fatigue in trained runners. Both high carbohydrate diets and carbohydrate ingestion during prolonged exercise have a blunting effect on IL-6 levels postendurance exercise. We hypothesized that carbohydrate ingestion may improve performance during a prolonged bout of exercise as a consequence of a blunted IL-6 response. Seven recreationally trained fasted runners completed two 90-min time trials under CHO supplemented and placebo conditions in a randomized order. The study was of a double-blinded, placebo-controlled, cross-over study design. Distance covered in 90 min was significantly greater following exogenous carbohydrate ingestion compared with the placebo trial (19.13 ± 1.7 km and 18.29 ± 1.9 km, respectively, p = .0022). While postexercise IL-6 levels were significantly lower in the CHO trial compared with the placebo trial (5.3 ± 1.9 pg·mL?1and 6.6 ± 3.0 pg·mL?1, respectively; p = .0313), this difference was considered physiologically too small to mediate the improvement in time trial performance.

    Research areas

  • Cytokines, carbohydrate, prolonged exercise, fatigue, intervention

External organisations

  • University of Portsmouth

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