Critique of an article from the Journal of Applied Physiology

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Critique of an article from the Journal of Applied Physiology

"Effect of different protocols of caffeine intake on metabolism and endurance performance"

Introduction
In 2002, a group of Australian researchers published a paper entitled the "Effect of different protocols of caffeine intake on metabolism and endurance performance". Caffeine use during sporting events has become much more popular and has widely studied. The purpose of the research was to examine the work increasing (ergogenic) effects of differing regiments of caffeine on metabolism and performance while simulating the typical nutritional preparation an athlete would do for a race. The study also sought to examine the effect of timing of caffeine intake, comparing
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The subjects refrained from caffeine, standardized diet, and standardized training for 48 hrs before the trials. For 24 hours before the trials, each subject was given a prepackaged standard diet. Exercise and food diaries were kept and checked for compliance.
Each trial consisted of two hours of steady state cycling at 70% VO2 peak immediately followed by an all out time trial. Study A compared placebo (no caffeine), caffeine before the trial (precaf), during trial (durcaf), and cola as a replacement for a 6% CHO (carbohydrate/sugar) sports drink just before the final time trial. Study B was similar to study A, but moved up the cola drink intake to allow the athletes to consume the cola at a rate that simulated race conditions. Study B also compared decaffeinated 6% CHO cola (control), caffeinated 6% CHO cola (Caf), decaffeinated 11% CHO cola (extraCHO), and caffeinated 11% CHO (Coke). This allowed determination of whether effects were from caffeine, increased sugar content, or some combination.

Results and Discussion
The metabolism results of study A showed caffeine results (Fig. A) as expected. Pre-caf gave the earliest caffeine reading, followed by dur-caf. Urinary caffeine levels (Fig. B) were well below the International Olympic Committee regulation of 12µg/ml. Plasma analysis showed that blood glucose levels were higher in the pre-caf treatment, possibly due an increase in metabolic rate from the

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