Glucose is a kind of sugar converted from the carbohydrate; the conversion process is done by liver. Glucose helps for the supply of energy to muscles and brain during the work out. If there is an extra amount of glucose in the body, it will be packed as glycogen, which is also be used during exercise. If you are not having good amounts of glucose during exercise, it leads to some problems like hypoglycemia, physical and mental fatigue. In some cases it also results for weakness and dizziness too. The working muscles need sufficient energy from the glucose other wise they likely to use the protein for energy which puts stress on the kidneys. In this process protein will be diverted from its original process of building muscles.
Glycogen is a muscle food for athelets. Glycogen is the extra amount of glucose remained in the body, which will be stored at liver and skeletal muscle. It serves energy to muscles and brain when the demand for energy is more than to the supplied glucose amount in the blood stream during the time of prolonged work out or when exercising with insufficient carbohydrate intake.
During less-intensity exercises, the stored glycogen can be used to raise the glucose levels in the bloodstream for as long as 90 minute, whereas during high-intensity workouts, these stored glycogen offers energy for only about 20 minutes. So, increase the glucose levels by consuming more amounts of carbohydrates. The people who are active get the help from glycogen during their extra work outs where as the glucose stores as fat in less active people.
To get the best glucose levels during work out, complex carbohydrates are more preferred than simple carbohydrates. Starch, bread, pasta, fiber and whole grains fall under the complex carbohydrates, where as simple carbohydrates are present in juices and candies. There will be a fast drop in the blood glucose when simple carbohydrates are consumed just before a work out. But complex carbohydrates are reverse to the simple carbohydrates; they help for the gradual raise of blood glucose over several hours. To get sufficient glucose levels during a work out, you need to intake an ideal meal that is loaded with rich carbohydrates before two to four hours of work out. After 90 minutes of work out, drink a sports drink to reload the glucose.
People with diabetics need sufficient glucose levels in their blood, otherwise they will face the problem of blood fluctuation while they are working out. Hence people with diabetics and also who are been under the medication need to monitor their blood glucose levels before, during and after the work out. Generally, 100 to 250 mg per deciliter, or mg/dL, is a safe pre-exercise blood sugar measurement. If you find any fall from this range lift up with a carbohydrate snack. If your blood sugar levels are above to the 250 mg/ dL, you may be near to the danger of developing a condition called ketoacidosis, so post pone your work out until the levels drop to the safe range.
Glucose as fuel
The glucose is extracted from the carbohydrates from foods and beverages to supply the benefits to all your muscles and organs. While working out the body requires glucose for better muscle functioning and it is required after workout too for providing adequate amount of protein to your muscles. As glucose requires less oxygen than fat, so it can be used as a fuel at higher intensities. You may need more glucose to fuel your body when the intensity reaches the next level. You need to rely on glucose when your body gets less oxygen. You need to restore your glucose levels when you are performing intense workout for longer span of time. You can opt for plain sugar but don’t fill up.
Role in muscle recovery
As stated in a journal published by the International Society of Sports Nutrition in 2012, after an intense workout your body needs both the necessary elements that are protein and glucose to rebuild the muscles. With the help of protein, glucose provides the energy to reconstruct the muscle structure. Thus you can say that it is important to consume carbohydrates as well as protein after a day’s intense workout. According to the journal, it was also found that the sooner you consume glucose after an intense workout, the sooner will your muscle structure start the reconstruction or repair procedure to form stronger muscles.
What to eat
People often get confused when it comes to consuming glucose as we don’t know which thing will supply the maximum glucose required by our body. Glucose, being a natural ingredient can be found in certain whole foods which includes vegetables, fruits and dairy products. The fiber content in these foods tends to make them filling. You can consume a banana or any other fruit right before or during or after an intense workout. You can opt for glucose drinks which are light and helps to boost your body by supplying you with fast acting glucose during workout. Sports gel is another option to get a punch of glucose in your system but they are packed with a lot of calories as well. For example, a 12 ounce bottle of Gatorade sports drink supplies 21 grams of carbohydrate which after digestion converts into glucose but 6 Gatorade energy chews supplies 24 grams of carbohydrate along with 100 calories. It is better to opt for sports drinks than gels and chews as drinks are easy to digest.
How much glucose do you need?
To keep your body and muscles in a well maintained state, you need to consume at least 2 meals before workout. Each meal should contain 25 to 35 grams of carbohydrate in case of women and for men it elevates from 35 to 50 grams of carbohydrate. It is recommended to consume a meal in the morning that should contain complex protein and carbohydrate for long lasting and slow releasing of energy. Eat simple carbohydrates which are packed with glucose and a little amount of calorie right an hour before you start your workout. If you are overweight then you need to balance the calorie intake with the energy loss. Consume the exact level of calorie you lose each day for maintaining your weight. On the other hand if you want to gain weight in your muscles then consume more calories than you burn, at least 30% to 40% more than that of you burn each day.