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Taurine Increases Time to Exhaustion, Sodium Citrate Improves Endurance and the Importance of Your Protein Source

Welcome to our weekly summary of the latest research from the world of sports nutrition.

Train hard!

 

Taurine and Caffeine Increased Time to Exhaustion in Hot Conditions

Man riding a bicycleThis study explored the effects of caffeine, taurine, and their combination on endurance cycling performance in hot and humid conditions. Twelve university students were tested with four different supplements: a placebo,  caffeine,  taurine, and a combination of the two, followed by a cycling test to exhaustion in a hot and humid environment (35°C, 65% humidity). The results showed that all experimental groups improved their time to exhaustion compared to the placebo group, with  taurine showing the best effect. However, the combined supplementation of  caffeine and  taurine did not provide additional performance benefits.

Our thoughts: The research showed taurine and caffeine improved endurance performance (time to exhaustion) in hot, challenging conditions, but interestingly, taurine had more impact than caffeine.

 

Sodium Citrate Improved Endurance Performance and Reduced Muscle Fatigue

Woman pushing a sled with weights on itThis study investigated the effects of sodium citrate supplementation on the performance of athletes in a fitness challenge. Twenty athletes were divided into two groups: one group took a sodium citrate supplement, while the other took a placebo before completing a series of exercises. The study found that the athletes who took sodium citrate performed better in all six exercises and had lower lactate levels, which suggests that sodium citrate can help reduce muscle fatigue and improve performance by preventing the build-up of lactate in the muscles.

Our thoughts: This is a well-designed yet small study that showed sodium citrate improved endurance performance. The question remains though, is it any easier on the stomach than sodium bicarbonate, which is widely known to improve performance?

 

The Effects of Whey and Soy Protein on Performance and Recovery

Woman scooping protein powderThis study examined the effects of whey and soy protein supplementation on recovery after speed endurance training in male soccer players. Ten players received whey protein (WP), soy protein (SP), or a placebo (PL) in a randomized trial. Both WP and SP mitigated the decrease in high-intensity and high-speed running during training, but all groups experienced similar performance deterioration during recovery. Muscle soreness and damage markers increased equally among trials, with SP showing a faster recovery of protein carbonyls after 48 hours. The study concluded that whey or soy protein supplementation at 1.5 g/kg/day helps maintain field performance during successive speed-endurance training sessions without affecting muscle damage and redox status markers.

Our thoughts: This evidence suggests that post-training, the body will benefit from any and all protein sources. While there is some evidence that different proteins can possibly increase muscle protein synthesis faster after training, this may not translate into any actual performance benefit.

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