Honey May Sweeten Exercise
LONGMONT, Colo.--In research presented at the annual meetings for Experimental Biology, the American College of Sports Medicine and the National Strength and Conditioning Association, researchers found that honey may be a carbohydrate option for athletes because of its low glycemic index, positive metabolic response and effective energy production.
The first trial involved 71 subjects who were given one of seven carbohydrate gels, including one which was honey and the other a placebo. It was found that honey had a similar effect as commercial carbohydrate gel, and it may be an effective pre-workout energy source that does not induce hypoglycemia.
The second trial of 39 weight-trained subjects reported that, after taking a protein shake blended with honey after an intensive workout, blood-sugar levels were sustained for more than two hours after exercising.
In the last trial, researchers found that nine competitive cyclists who were given a honey, glucose or placebo gel prior to a 40-mile simulated race and at 10-mile intervals experienced increased power and speed over a placebo.
"Our first study suggested honey could operate as a 'time-released' muscle fuel for exercising muscles," stated Richard Kreider, Ph.D., lead reasearcher for all three studies. "Our second experiment suggested that honey would be a good carbohydrate source to replenish muscles. However, our last study convinced us that honey can improve endurance exercise capacity."
All studies were sponsored by the National Honey Board (www.nhb.org), a non-profit organization in Longmont, Colo. The research was done in collaboration with Laguna Niguel, Calif.-based IMAGINutrition.