Guidelines for glycerol use in hyperhydration and rehydration associated with exercise

van Rosendal, Simon Piet, Osborne, Mark Andrew, Fassett, Robert Gordon and Coombes, Jeff Scott (2010) Guidelines for glycerol use in hyperhydration and rehydration associated with exercise. Sports Medicine, 40 2: 113-139. doi:10.2165/11530760-000000000-00000

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Author van Rosendal, Simon Piet
Osborne, Mark Andrew
Fassett, Robert Gordon
Coombes, Jeff Scott
Title Guidelines for glycerol use in hyperhydration and rehydration associated with exercise
Journal name Sports Medicine   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0112-1642
Publication date 2010-02-01
Sub-type Critical review of research, literature review, critical commentary
DOI 10.2165/11530760-000000000-00000
Volume 40
Issue 2
Start page 113
End page 139
Total pages 27
Place of publication Auckland, New Zealand
Publisher ADIS Press
Collection year 2011
Language eng
Formatted abstract
Dehydration in athletes alters cardiovascular and thermoregulatory function and may inhibit endurance exercise capacity if fluid loss exceeds 2 of bodyweight (BW). If this level of dehydration cannot be prevented when starting from a state of euhydration, then athletes may create a state of hyperhydration by consuming extra fluid prior to exercise. From this hyperhydrated situation, individuals have a greater capacity to tolerate fluid loss before becoming dehydrated. Furthermore, excess pre-exercise fluid intake enhances thermoregulatory ability, as well as increasing plasma volume to maintain cardiac output. However, hyperhydrating before exercise is difficult, because a large fluid intake is typically accompanied by diuresis. Glycerol-containing beverages create an osmotic gradient in the circulation favouring fluid retention, thereby facilitating hyperhydration and protecting against dehydration. Many studies have shown that increases in body water by 1L or more are achievable through glycerol hyperhydration. This article analyses the evidence for glycerol use in facilitating hyperhydration and rehydration, and provides guidelines for athletes wishing to use this compound. An analysis of the studies in this area indicates that endurance athletes intending to hyperhydrate with glycerol should ingest glycerol 1.2 gkg BW in 26 mLkg BW of fluid over a period of 60 minutes, 30 minutes prior to exercise. The effects of glycerol on total body water when used during rehydration are less well defined, due to the limited studies conducted. However, ingesting glycerol 0.125gkg BW in a volume equal to 5mLkg BW during exercise will delay dehydration, while adding glycerol 1.0gkg BW to each 1.5L of fluid consumed following exercise will accelerate the restoration of plasma volume. Side effects from glycerol ingestion are rare, but include nausea, gastrointestinal discomfort and light-headedness. In summary, glycerol ingestion before, during or following exercise is likely to improve the hydration state of the endurance athlete.
© 2010 Adis Data Information BV. All rights reserved.
Keyword Randomised clinical-trials
Muscle bolld-flow
Endurance performance
Preexercise ingestion
Cycling performance
Prolonged exercise
Subsequent metabolism
Intense exercise
Heat illness
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Critical review of research, literature review, critical commentary
Collections: Official 2011 Collection
School of Human Movement and Nutrition Sciences Publications
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Citation counts: TR Web of Science Citation Count  Cited 22 times in Thomson Reuters Web of Science Article | Citations
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Created: Sun, 07 Mar 2010, 00:00:54 EST