APR 07, 2015 7:21 PM PDT

Bite-Sized Fast Food Effective in Workout Recovery

WRITTEN BY: Will Hector
University of Montana researchers have good news for endurance athletes hankering for a burger and fries after an intense workout: Dig in.

In moderation, that is.

A new study, recently published by the International Journal of Sport Nutrition and Exercise Metabolism, found there was no significant difference in glycogen recovery when cyclists ate fast food after a workout versus when they ingested traditional sports supplements such as Gatorade, Powerbar and Clif products.

Brent Ruby, director of UM's Montana Center for Work Physiology and Exercise Metabolism, graduate student Michael Cramer, and a team of researchers in UM's Department of Health and Human Performance detailed these findings in a paper titled "Post-exercise Glycogen Recovery and Exercise Performance is Not Significantly Different Between Fast Food and Sport Supplements."

In the study, 11 male cyclists completed two experimental trials in randomized order. Each trial included a 90-minute glycogen-depletion ride followed by a four-hour recovery period. Immediately following each ride and again two hours later, researchers provided participants with either sports supplements or fast food, such as hamburgers, french fires and hash browns. Following a four-hour recovery period, participants completed a 12.4-mile (20-kilometer) time trial.

The UM researchers analyzed muscle biopsies and blood samples taken in between the two rides and found no differences in blood glucose and insulin responses. Rates of glycogen recovery from the feedings also were not different between the diets. Most importantly, there were no differences in time-trial performance between the two diets.

"Our results show that eating fast food -- in the right amounts -- can provide the same potential for muscle glycogen as sports nutrition products that usually cost more," Ruby said.

Dozens of publications, from the Washington Post and the Daily Mail to Runner's World and Outside magazine, have picked up the results of the study since it first appeared online in late March. But not all of the articles are accurate, Ruby said.

"A lot of the articles out there are totally misrepresenting the study," he said. "We had participants eating small servings of the fast-food products, not giant orders of burgers and fries. Moderation is the key to the results we got."

Follow Will Hector: @WriteCompassion

(Sources: University of Montana; Science Daily)
About the Author
  • Will Hector practices psychotherapy at Heart in Balance Counseling Center in Oakland, California. He has substantial training in Attachment Theory, Hakomi Body-Centered Psychotherapy, Psycho-Physical Therapy, and Formative Psychology. To learn more about his practice, click here: http://www.heartinbalancetherapy.com/will-hector.html
You May Also Like
SEP 30, 2021
Clinical & Molecular DX
How Babies Look at Objects Linked to Future Autism Diagnoses
SEP 30, 2021
How Babies Look at Objects Linked to Future Autism Diagnoses
At nine months old, most babies have started moving around independently and are curiously exploring the exciting new wo ...
SEP 28, 2021
Health & Medicine
Experts Urge Pregnant Women to Use Caution with Acetaminophen
SEP 28, 2021
Experts Urge Pregnant Women to Use Caution with Acetaminophen
Concern about the use of acetaminophen (paracetamol or N-acetyl-p-aminophenol (APAP)) during pregnancy has prompted a gr ...
OCT 03, 2021
Health & Medicine
Why Did a Town Start Putting People on Trial for Witchcraft?
OCT 03, 2021
Why Did a Town Start Putting People on Trial for Witchcraft?
In early 1692 in Salem, Massachusetts, the daughter and niece of Reverend Samuel Parris began to writhe, roar, contort, ...
OCT 07, 2021
Health & Medicine
A School-based Approach to Combatting Adolescent Obesity
OCT 07, 2021
A School-based Approach to Combatting Adolescent Obesity
It should come as no surprise that obesity is a significant public health concern associated with astronomical economic ...
OCT 10, 2021
Cell & Molecular Biology
DNA Can Reveal Treatments for Lung Cancer in 'Never-Smoked' Patients
OCT 10, 2021
DNA Can Reveal Treatments for Lung Cancer in 'Never-Smoked' Patients
There is a well-known causal connection between smoking and lung cancer, and most research on lung cancer has been focus ...
OCT 13, 2021
Microbiology
How Bacteria Can Work as a Kind of Antibiotic Therapy
OCT 13, 2021
How Bacteria Can Work as a Kind of Antibiotic Therapy
When we get an infection, we can take antibiotics to get rid of it. But sometimes the situation becomes more complicated ...
Loading Comments...