Timing, Optimal Dose and Intake Duration of Dietary Supplements with Evidence-Based Use in Sports Nutrition

J Exerc Nutrition Biochem. 2016 Dec 31;20(4):1-12. doi: 10.20463/jenb.2016.0031.


Purpose: The aim of the present narrative review was to consider the evidence on the timing, optimal dose and intake duration of the main dietary supplements β-alanine, nitrate, caffeine, creatine, sodium bicarbonate, carbohydrate and protein.

Methods: This review article will focuses on timing, optimal dose and intake duration of main dietary supplements for consuming.

Results: This paper reviewed the evidence to determine the optimal time, efficacy doses and intake duration for sports supplements verified by scientific evidence that report a performance enhancing effect in both situation of laboratory and training settings.

Conclusion: Consumption of the supplements are usually suggested into 5 specific times such as, pre-exercise (nitrate, caffeine, sodium bicarbonate, carbohydrate and protein), during exercise (carbohydrate), post-exercise (creatine, carbohydrate, protein), meal time (β-alanine, creatine, sodium bicarbonate, nitrate, carbohydrate and protein), and before sleep (protein). In addition, the recommended dosing protocol for the supplements such as, nitrate and β-alanine are fixed amount of irrespective of body weight, while dosing protocol for sodium bicarbonate, caffeine and creatine supplements are related with corrected body weight (mg/kg bw). Also, intake duration of the supplements is suggested for the supplements such as, creatine and β-alanine are effective in chronic daily time < 2 weeks while caffeine, sodium bicarbonate and are effective in acute daily time (1-3 hours). Plus, ingestion of nitrate supplement is required in both chronic daily time < 28 days and acute daily time (2-2.5 h) prior exercise.

Keywords: dietary supplements; intake duration; sports nutrition; timing, dose.

Publication types

  • Review