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Sodium bicarbonate supplementation on 1-km cycling time-trial performance

Grant number: 17/24841-5
Support type:Scholarships in Brazil - Scientific Initiation
Effective date (Start): July 01, 2018
Effective date (End): December 31, 2018
Field of knowledge:Health Sciences - Physical Education
Principal Investigator:Bryan Saunders
Grantee:Breno Duarte Costa
Home Institution: Faculdade de Medicina (FM). Universidade de São Paulo (USP). São Paulo , SP, Brazil
Associated research grant:16/50438-0 - Nutritional suplementation and exercise to optimize exercise performance: focus on individual responses and a step towards personalized sports nutrition, AP.JP


There is a robust body of scientific evidence that demonstrates the efficacy of sodium bicarbonate supplementation to improve exercise capacity. This is explained by the fact that oral intake of sodium bicarbonate causes an increase in blood bicarbonate concentrations which exerts an extracellular buffering effect during physical exercise, due to the increase of the hydrogen ion (H +) efflux from within the muscle to the blood, where it can be buffered by bicarbonate and consequently reduce muscular acidosis. Nonetheless, evidence remains equivocal, as numerous studies have reported no effect on exercise theoretically limited by muscle acidosis. However, many studies have used exercise capacity tests which have been criticized for their high variability and low application to a real-world setting. Performance tests have been shown to be more reliable and have greater external validity. Nonetheless, few studies have investigated the effect of sodium bicarbonate on exercise performance. The aim of this study is to evaluate whether there is an improvement in 1-km cycling trime-trial performance in individuals supplemented with sodium bicarbonate. Fifteen healthy men (age 18-35 years) will be invited to attend the laboratory on five separate visits to a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study. Participants will be supplemented with a 0.3 g·kg-1BM dose of sodium bicarbonate or placebo (Analytical Pharmacy, Brazil) in opaque gelatin capsules. One hour after supplementation they will perform a 1-km time trial and every 10 minutes a blood sample will be collected. A questionnaire will be also used to evaluate the side-effects associated with sodium bicarbonate supplementation. (AU)