Bicarbonates

(Known as Potassium bicarbonate, Sodium bicarbonate, Bicarbonates)

tickBoosts energy
tickAids recovery
How does it work?
Bicarbonates are referred to as "alkaline" salts. This means they have the ability to neutralise or counteract acids. Both potassium and sodium bicarbonate can reduce acid levels in the stomach, increasing the uptake and absorption of various nutrients such as Glutamine and Creatine.
Who is it used for?
Bicarbonates will enhance the absorption of nutrients such as Creatine and Glutamine. Individuals using these supplements will benefit from sodium and/or potassium bicarbonate. As an aid to performance, sodium bicarbonate is used by athletes in sports such as rugby, long-distance running, football and cycling.
How does it work?
Bicarbonates are referred to as "alkaline" salts. This means they have the ability to neutralise or counteract acids. Both potassium and sodium bicarbonate can reduce acid levels in the stomach, increasing the uptake and absorption of various nutrients such as Glutamine and Creatine.

As an aid to performance, sodium bicarbonate is used by athletes in sports such as rugby, long-distance running, football and cycling, to combat the fatiguing effects of another acid - lactic acid [1, 2]. During very intense exercise, lactic acid accumulation in the muscle cell can lead to premature fatigue. Sodium bicarbonate promotes the removal of lactic acid from the muscle cells into the blood stream. This prevents the premature fatigue associated with lactic acid accumulation [6, 7].

A number of studies have tested and confirmed the benefits of sodium bicarbonate "loading" as an effective ergogenic aid for athletes competing in high-intensity sprint-type activities. In general, those events in which lactic acid accumulation is typically a limiting factor seem to respond well to bicarbonate loading. Athletes competing in running events from 400 - 1500 meters, swimming events of 100-200 meters, track cycling 1-5 kilometers and rowing events (2000 meters) have all shown significant improvements in performance following pre-event loading with sodium bicarbonate [3, 4, 5].
How do I use it?
To reduce acid levels in the stomach and aid in the absorption of Creatine and Glutamine, consume potassium and/or sodium bicarbonate with your Creatine and/or Glutamine supplements.
What results can I expect?
Athletes competing in running events from 400 - 1500 meters, swimming events of 100-200 meters, track cycling 1-5 kilometers and rowing events (2000 meters) have all shown significant improvements in performance following pre-event loading with sodium bicarbonate.
What can it be combined with?
As an aid to performance, sodium bicarbonate can be used alone. Potassium and sodium bicarbonate may also be consumed with Glutamine and Creatine to increase their absorption and uptake.

1. Hirakoba K, Maruyama A, Misaka K. (1993). Effect of acute sodium bicarbonate ingestion on excess CO2 output during incremental exercise. European Journal of Applied Physiology and Occupational Physiology, 66, 536-541
2. Linderman J, Fahey TD. (1991). Sodium bicarbonate ingestion and exercise performance. An update. Sports Medicine, 11, 71-77
3. Linderman JK, Gosselink KL. (1994). The effects of sodium bicarbonate ingestion on exercise performance. Sports Medicine, 18, 75-80
4. Matson LG, Tran ZV. (1993). Effects of sodium bicarbonate ingestion on anaerobic performance: a meta-analytic review. International Journal of Sport Nutrition, 3, 2-28
5. McNaughton L, Backx K, Palmer G, Strange N. (1999). Effects of chronic bicarbonate ingestion on the performance of high-intensity work. European Journal of Applied Physiology and Occupational Physiology, 80, 333-336
6. Verbitsky O, Mizrahi J, Levin M, Isakov E. (1997). Effect of ingested sodium bicarbonate on muscle force, fatigue, and recovery. Journal of Applied Physiology, 83, 333-337
7. Niv Y, Fraser GM. (2002). The alkaline tide phenomenon. Journal of Clinical Gastroenterology, 35, 5-8

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