Calder, P.C., Lindley, M.R., Burke, L.M., Stear, S.J. and Castell, L.M.
A-Z of nutritional supplements: dietary supplements, sports nutrition foods and ergogenic aids for health and performance Part 14
British Journal of Sports Medicine, 44, (14), . (doi:10.1136/bjsm.2010.079525). (PMID:21041244).
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Part 14 covers issues related to fats. General health messages tell us that we consume too much fat; thus it might seem strange to include it as a potential supplement for sports performance. But fat, in the form of our body stores, provides a relatively unlimited pool of energy: a critical adaptation to training is to enhance our ability to transport it, take it up into the muscle and oxidise it during exercise. However, even the most highly trained athletes have not reached maximal capacity for fat oxidation during exercise, since it can be increased even further by consumption of a high-fat diet prior to the exercise. Although fat oxidation has limited capacity as a fuel source for the high-intensity activities that underpin success in most sports, if fat supplements or other products could increase fat utilisation at more moderate exercise intensities, it might provide a way to ‘spare’ muscle glycogen stores for the high-intensity phases of sport. Another aspect is to consider the roles that fats play apart from their contribution to body fuel. The ?-3 (n-3) fatty acids eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), commonly known as fish oils because of their concentrated presence in some fatty fish, are of interest here because of a range of proposed physiological activities.
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