Calorie-Containing Recovery Drinks Increase Recreational Runners' Voluntary Energy and Carbohydrate Intake, with Minimal Impact on Fluid Recovery

Ben Desbrow*, Katelyn Barnes, Gregory R. Cox, Elizaveta Iudakhina, Danielle McCartney, Sierra Skepper, Caroline Young, Chris Irwin

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)
246 Downloads (Pure)


This study assessed voluntary dietary intake when different beverages were provided within a recovery area following recreational exercise. Participants completed two 10-km runs 1 week apart. Immediately after the first run, "beer drinkers" (n = 54; mean +/- SD: age = 23.9 +/- 5.8 years, body mass [BM] = 76 +/- 13 kg) randomly received low-alcohol beer (Hahn Ultra (R) [Lion Co.], 0.9% alcohol by volume) or sports drink (SD; Gatorade (R) [PepsiCo]), whereas "nonbeer drinkers" (n = 78; age = 21.8 +/- 2.2 years, BM = 71 +/- 13 kg) received water or SD. Participants remained in a recovery area for 30-60 min with fluid consumption monitored. The following week, participants received the alternate beverage. Participants recorded all food/fluid consumed for the remainder of both trial days (diary and photographs). Fluid balance was assessed via BM change and urine specific gravity. Paired t tests were used to assess differences in hydration and dietary variables. No differences were observed in preexercise urine specific gravity (similar to 1.01) or BM loss (similar to 2%) between intervention groups (ps > .05). Water versus SD: No difference in acute fluid intake was noted (water = 751 +/- 259 ml, SD = 805 +/- 308 ml, p = .157). SD availability influenced total energy and carbohydrate intakes (water = 5.7 +/- 2.5 MJ and 151 +/- 77 g, SD = 6.5 +/- 2.7 MJ and 187 +/- 87 g, energy p = .002, carbohydrate p <.001). SD versus beer: SD availability resulted in greater acute fluid intake (SD = 1,047 +/- 393 ml, beer = 850 +/- 630 ml; p = .004), which remained evident at the end of trial days (SD = 3,337 +/- 1,100 ml, beer = 2,982 +/- 1,191 ml;p <.01). No differences in dietary variables were observed. Next day, urine specific gravity values were not different between water versus SD. However, a small difference was detected between SD versus beer (SD = 1.021 +/- 0.009, beer = 1.016 +/- 0.008, p = .002). Consuming calorie-containing drinks postexercise appears to increase daily energy and carbohydrate intake but has minimal impact on next-day hydration.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)359-363
Number of pages5
JournalInternational Journal of Sport Nutrition and Exercise Metabolism
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2019


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