The effects of carbohydrate supplementation during the second of two prolonged cycling bouts on immunoendocrine responses

  • Tzai-Li LiEmail author
  • Michael Gleeson
Original Article


The purpose of this study was to examine the effect of carbohydrate (CHO) feeding during the second of two 90-min cycling bouts (EX1 started at 09:00 and EX2 started at 13:30) at 60% \(\dot{V}\hbox{O}_{2\max} \) on leucocyte redistribution, neutrophil degranulation and oxidative burst and plasma IL-6 and stress hormone responses. This study consisted of two trials, which were completed in a counterbalanced order and separated by at least 4 days. Subjects (n=9) consumed a lemon flavoured 10% w/v CHO (glucose) or placebo (PLA) beverage during EX2: 500 ml just before exercise and 250 ml every 20 min during exercise. Venous blood samples were taken 5 min before exercise, immediately post-exercise, and 18-h post-EX2 for both trials. The main findings of this study were that ingestion of CHO compared with PLA during EX2 better maintained plasma glucose concentration, blunted the responses of plasma adrenaline, ACTH, cortisol, GH and IL-6, and attenuated the leukocytosis and monocytosis, but had no effect on neutrophil degranulation and oxidative burst activity. Furthermore, the immunoendocrine disturbances induced by two bouts of prolonged exercise returned to resting values within 18 h. These findings suggest that ingestion of CHO compared with PLA during the second of two bouts of 90-min cycling at 60% \(\dot{V}\hbox{O}_{2\max} \) better maintains plasma glucose, blunts hypothalamic–pituitary–adrenal activation, and attenuates leucocyte trafficking, but does not affect neutrophil function. Furthermore, the disturbances of immunoendocrine responses induced by two bouts of prolonged exercise on the same day recover within 18 h.


Leucocyte trafficking Neutrophil degranulation Neutrophil oxidative burst IL-6 Stress hormones 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institute School of Sport and Exercise SciencesLoughborough UniversityLoughboroughUK
  2. 2.Department of Sports and Leisure StudiesNational Dong Hwa UniversityHualienTaiwan

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