[Performance enhancement by carbohydrate intake during sport: effects of carbohydrates during and after high-intensity exercise]

Ned Tijdschr Geneeskd. 2015;159:A7465.
[Article in Dutch]


Endogenous carbohydrate availability does not provide sufficient energy for prolonged moderate to high-intensity exercise. Carbohydrate ingestion during high-intensity exercise can therefore enhance performance.- For exercise lasting 1 to 2.5 hours, athletes are advised to ingest 30-60 g of carbohydrates per hour.- Well-trained endurance athletes competing for longer than 2.5 hours at high intensity can metabolise up to 90 g of carbohydrates per hour, provided that a mixture of glucose and fructose is ingested.- Athletes participating in intermittent or team sports are advised to follow the same strategies but the timing of carbohydrate intake depends on the type of sport.- If top performance is required again within 24 hours after strenuous exercise, the advice is to supplement endogenous carbohydrate supplies quickly within the first few hours post-exercise by ingesting large amounts of carbohydrate (1.2 g/kg/h) or a lower amount of carbohydrate (0.8 g/kg/h) with a small amount of protein (0.2-0.4 g/kg/h).

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Dietary Carbohydrates / administration & dosage*
  • Dietary Proteins / administration & dosage
  • Dietary Supplements
  • Exercise / physiology*
  • Glucose / metabolism*
  • Humans
  • Nutritional Physiological Phenomena / physiology
  • Nutritional Requirements*
  • Physical Endurance / physiology*
  • Sports


  • Dietary Carbohydrates
  • Dietary Proteins
  • Glucose