Fitness: How to ‘increase fat burning’ in a heatwave – ‘benefits’ of one drink

Rapid weight loss 'becoming much more accepted' says Mosley

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Temperatures have soared over the past couple of weeks and we could see yet another hot burst as we hit July. Despite the heat, people still want to get out and get on with their regular exercise routines, so experts have laid out how they can train safely in the warmer weather while increasing fat burning with the help of one drink in particular.

In a new study carried out by the Institute for Scientific Information on Coffee (ISIC), caffeine, can have a big impact on participants’ performance.

The latest research found that it can boost muscular endurance, movement velocity and muscular strength, sprinting, jumping and throwing performance, as well as a wide range of aerobic and anaerobic sport-specific actions.

Dr Neil Clarke PhD, Course Director for MSc. Sports and Exercise Nutrition at Coventry University, commented: “Caffeine ingestion has consistently been shown to improve endurance, high-intensity and resistance exercise, as well as intermittent sports such as football and tennis.

“Similarly, cognitive function, including attention and vigilance have also been shown to be improved following caffeine ingestion.

“These beneficial effects are generally independent of training status, habitual caffeine intake and sex.”

Caffeine ingestion has a well-established impact for resistance exercise performance, and could benefit people training when it’s hot.

“Data suggests that coffee, when consumed in moderation, contributes to daily fluid requirement and does not pose a detrimental effect to fluid balance,” Dr Clarke added.

Caffeine is recognised by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) as one of five dietary supplements with strong evidence that it can improve exercise capacity and performance.

Drinking a simple cup of coffee can boost sports and exercise performance and approximately 76 percent of athletes consume it for competitions.

Dr Clarke referenced how the latest studies about coffee’s impact on a range of sport show how the contribution to overall fluid intake from one cup is “notable”.

A 2022 review concluded that where alertness and attention are critical to sports performance, low or moderate intakes of caffeine before and/or during exercise can help improve aspects of cognitive function.

The researchers suggested that caffeine can improve reported levels of energy, mood and attention and may also improve simple reaction time, memory and fatigue.

Last year, the International Society of Sports Nutrition (ISSN) updated its position statement on caffeine and exercise performance to support the view that supplementation with caffeine can enhance various aspects of exercise performance.

In 2016, a study to try and develop a beverage hydration index found no difference between the cumulative urine output at four hours after ingestion of coffee and plain water, suggesting that coffee has the same short-term hydration potential as water when ingested in a dehydrated state.

Not only does it increase performance but it can also increase fat-burning if caffeine is taken half an hour before aerobic exercise, according to a new study published in the Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition, therefore aiding weight loss too.

Research has also found that two cups of coffee can help reduce exercise-induced pain and delayed-onset muscle injury.

A study by the University of Rhode Island showed that caffeine significantly reduced post-workout muscle soreness when compared to a placebo.

Megan Thomas, sports scientist for Amunra Performance Coffee said: “Studies have shown that caffeine helps increase carbohydrate metabolism after exercise, which basically means your muscles can replenish their energy stores better and more efficiently with caffeine.

“Coffee also contains natural compounds called polyphenols, which are becoming increasingly interesting from a recovery point of view as they seem to improve blood flow and recovery, reducing inflammation and DOMS (delayed onset muscle soreness).”

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