Does medium chain triglyceride play an ergogenic role in endurance exercise performance?


The progress of sports-related research over the past decades has added significantly to the increase of athletic performance. In regard to nutrition, research has typically focused on the relationship between the management of basic nutrients found in diet and performance enhancement1. From this assumption came the idea of providing the athlete with a load of carbohydrate before the competition, to delay exhaustion. Overcompensation diet has successfully increased both muscular glycogen storage and performance2,3. It was thus established a direct relationship between muscular glycogen content and ability to perform exercises. Based on these findings, from the 60s, other nutritional strategies were developed to increase availability of free fatty acids (FFA) or fatty acids oxidation capability, both aiming to promote glycogen sparing effect and therefore delay exhaustion4. Initially, studies by Rennie et al.5 and Hickson et al.6 used rats. In their studies, reduction of glycogen degradation rate and increased time for exhaustion after administration of corn oil were seen. These results encouraged the carrying out of tests on lipid supplementation in humans. Costill et al.7, Coyle et al.8, Dick et al.9 and Vukovich et al.10 showed that by increasing FFA concentration, it was possible for humans to reduce muscular glycogen utilization when performing endurance exercise. It has also been observed increase in exercise performance-maintenance capability. It is important to mention that the techniques to raise FFA concentration employed in those studies include triglycerides intake followed by intravenous heparine infusion, but this is a too invasive procedure for a practical benefit of the athlete. Moreover, heparine is a powerful anti-coagulant, and could potentiate bleeding, in case of lesions.

Cite this paper

@inproceedings{Gomes2003DoesMC, title={Does medium chain triglyceride play an ergogenic role in endurance exercise performance?}, author={Rodrigo Vitasovic Gomes and Marcelo Saldanha Aoki}, year={2003} }