Ketonic state and ketogenic diets seems to be all the rage for athletic performance lately. But it may not be ideal for most sports especially ones which depend on higher levels of intensity to determine top performing selection. Ketone salts work by artificially elevating blood ketone levels, similar to the outcome of starvation and force energy production from primarily from fats. Although fats are an effective long-term fuel it is more complex to process and not accessible when muscles require bursts of energy. This can apply to even longer term endurance events where a portion of the event requires a level of intensity to select a winner. In the study by Little, male athletes consuming ketone salts VS placebo experienced a 7% lower power output.
"Often these supplements are marketed as a means of improving athletic performance but in this case, the research tells a very different story," says Little.
Trevor O’Malley, Etienne Myette-Cote, Cody Durrer, Jonathan P. Little. Nutritional ketone salts increase fat oxidation but impair high-intensity exercise performance in healthy adult males. Applied Physiology, Nutrition, and Metabolism, 2017; 42 (10): 1031 DOI: 10.1139/apnm-2016-0641
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