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In the study, cyclists who pre-supplemented with Palatinose prior to exercising exhibited a more stable blood glucose profile, higher fat oxidation, and improved athletic performance, compared with a maltodextrin control group.
Beneo’s (Morris Plains, NJ) low-glycemic carbohydrate ingredient, Palatinose, may improve athletes’ metabolic profiles and exercise performance, according to results from a new study. In the study, cyclists who pre-supplemented with Palatinose prior to exercising exhibited a more stable blood glucose profile, higher fat oxidation, and improved athletic performance, compared with a maltodextrin control group.
Palatinose is fully digestible, sustained-release, disaccharide-type carbohydrate derived from sugar beet. The company says that Palatinose’s sustained-release formulation allows it to provide a steady supply of carbohydrate energy with less effect on blood glucose levels and insulin.
Previous studies have explored Palatinose’s fat-burning and blood-sugar benefits. For example, a recent study published in the journal Nutrients found that Palatinose supplementation, along with a low-glycemic diet, helped control blood sugar levels and supported weight management in Asian men.
In the current randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, crossover design trial, researchers sought to further explore Palatinose’s effects on blood sugar and fat oxidation in athletes. Specifically, the study authors examined the effects of Palatinose supplementation on fuel flexibility-that is, the body’s ability to switch between fats and carbohydrates for energy-and on exercise performance. Researchers supplemented 20 experienced cyclists with either 750 ml of a 10%-carbohydrate drink or the equivalent dosage of a maltodextrin control. The drinks were consumed prior to a 90-minute endurance exercise at moderate intensity. Following the endurance trial, subjects also completed a timed trial performance test.
The athletes who drank the Palatinose beverage demonstrated higher fat oxidation rates during the endurance trial, and also performed better in the sprint test. In fact, says Beneo, the Palatinose group completed the sprint trial a full minute ahead of the maltodextrin group. In addition, athletes in the group given Palatinose were able to pedal “more powerfully” in the final minute of the timed trial compared with the maltodextrin group. The study authors explained that Palatinose’s unique sustained-release properties allow for “a greater reliance on fat oxidation and [the] sparing of glycogen during the initial endurance exercise.”
Anne Sentko, vice president, regulatory affairs and nutrition communication, Beneo, commented on the study results in a press statement from Beneo. “The results of this study show that Beneo’s Palatinose improves fat oxidation during endurance exercise, in line with the specific properties of Palatinose in delivering slower and sustained release, full carbohydrate energy, and a lower rise in blood glucose levels. By improving the body’s fat oxidation capacity during high intensity exercise, it saves glycogen for the final sprint, which in turn helps athletes perform better.”
The company says these results show that the type of carbohydrate consumed makes a significant difference in fuel flexibility and performance. Other sports drinks and pouches that have been widely available on the market contain high-glycemic carbohydrates, it says, while lower-glycemic alternatives like Palatinose have not been available until recently. Now, with the growing body of research supporting the benefits of low-glycemic carbohydrates, Palatinose can help athletes achieve higher fat-oxidation rates in endurance training or competitive endurance activities, it adds.
“Palatinose is an innovative carbohydrate choice in sports nutrition,” added Sentko. “Athletes and sports people who have tried it out in their daily practice report that they feel the difference from its steady and sustained energy release. There is market demand for such sports nutrition products and the findings of this study offer food and drink manufacturers a way that they can develop products that help people achieve their sporting goals.”