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Athletes Use Carbohydrate Solution Mouthwash For Energy

Carbohydrate Mouth Rinse: Cool or Not?

Eating gels, energy bars, and goo is so passé. As reported by the New York Times, athletes can get the same burst of energy from just gargling a carb solution. No eating, no wrappers, no muscle cramps — just gargle and spit. A study found that just having the carbs enter your mouth tricks the body into thinking energy is on the way, which provides the extra energy your body needs to perform. In studies, athletes who rinsed their mouths with a carb solution performed as well as those who fueled up on food or a sports beverage. They also outperformed athletes who were given a placebo mouth rinse.

Of course, spitting out a carb rinse won't satisfy hunger, so endurance athletes are probably better off getting the added nutrition from eating or drinking during a race. And while you can buy carbohydrate mouth rinses at some health stores, you can also make your own. Keep in mind that using artificial sweeteners will have no effect though.

Image Source: Thinkstock
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lissli lissli 4 years
Honestly I think it sounds gross, I will stick to gummy bears on my runs.
tigr3bianca tigr3bianca 5 years
I've heard of this last year. If you are trying to get through a tough workout to just swish your mouth with a little Gatorade, it can help you finish strong. Its definitely NOT supposed to substitute eating or anything, its to just get you through your workout until you can eat something. This really helps if you are doing intervals.
Spectra Spectra 5 years
That sounds messed-up. Wouldn't you get the same effect by chewing up a candy bar and spitting it out? It just sounds gross and weird to me.
arcticpuppet arcticpuppet 5 years
it's an interesting find for science, definitely, but nutrition-wise? not so much!
le-romantique le-romantique 5 years
I can see this being heavily abused... don't like the idea at all.
darc5204 darc5204 5 years
Not cool. Endurance athletes need the sugar and salt, and everyone needs the hydration.
TADOW TADOW 5 years
That sounds like something from Zoolander. I don't know why, it just reminds me of when he said "I throw up all the time, it's a great way to lose weight before a show". ON topic - you should never "trick" your body into thinking it's eating. The intense bile you'll get from your stomach trying to digest something that's not there can lead to ulcers.
Food Food 5 years
I'm not going to lie. It sounds disgusting! What's so wrong with eating something?!
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