Phosphorus supplementation raised the heart rate of male water polo players during a randomised graded dryland exercise test

BMJ Open Sport Exerc Med. 2020 Apr 8;6(1):e000714. doi: 10.1136/bmjsem-2019-000714. eCollection 2020.


Objective: The impact of phosphorus supplementation on athletic performance is unclear. Ingestion of phosphorus for several days has been reported to increase cardiac capacity, improve oxygen muscle kinetics and enhance lactate buffering capacity. Recent studies have shown that phosphorus ingestion with a meal increases postprandial glucose uptake and thermogenesis. The present study aimed to assess the effect of acute phosphorus ingestion with a meal on specific workload parameters.

Methods: A double-blind, crossover trial of 12 male water polo players between 18 and 22 years old was conducted. Overnight fasted subjects were asked to cycle for 20 min before ingesting 100 g of glucose with phosphorus or placebo (400 mg). Three hours later, they were asked to perform a graded cycling exercise for 25 min.

Results: Expenditure, respiratory quotient, perception of fatigue and exercise efficiency were similar between treatments. However, heart rate was significantly higher in the phosphorus group (142±10 beats/min) compared with placebo (135±10 beats/min).

Conclusion: Exercise performance 3 hours after the coingestion of glucose with phosphorus did not affect substrate use, while heart rate was increased. The heart rate increase could be attributed to a rise in core body temperature.

Trial registration number: NCT03101215.

Keywords: exercise testing; heart; sports and nutrition; supplements; water polo.

Associated data