T Nation

practical recommendations in Caffeine roundtable?

I was dissappointed that the participants in the Caffeine round table didn’t offer any recommendations as where to put caffeine consumption relative to carbs. The blood sugar response of carbs is complete in two hours. Caffeine has a half-life of 5 hours. From these two facts, wouldn’t it be possible to construct some guidelines? Brian

I kinda think the guys who were NOT Berardi thought the whole thing was much ado about nothing and you could basically have your caffeine whenever you wanted, but not around your creatine.

Eat low carbs around the time you consume caffeine. It’s easy to eat low carb for breakfast if you’re a coffee drinker anyway. Also, caffeine before training is mostly okay.

I came away with the impression that, in general, you should avoid sudden large doses, such as more than 100-150 mg at a time, that more liberal use of caffeine would be helpful during periods of reduced carb intake, and that the effect of exercise tends to offset the negative effect of caffeine on insulin sensitivity. And, as with any other stimulant, keeping its use minimal and with moderation potentiates its effect when you do use it.

This has been nothering me since JB came out with this study, and I just haven’t posted anything about it. Someone correct me if my thinking is wrong here, and why please. Okay, after a workout, we want to have a high GI meal (which is why we have surge). Caffiene makes low GI into high GI, and high GI into even higher GI. So wouldn’t it be benefitial to have the caffiene before the workout to create an even higher GI after the workout?

What about these rules: #1–caffeine no less than 2 hours after a meal with carbs (maybe longer for a higher fiber meal); #2–carbs no less than 5 hours after caffeine consumption?

That’s what I’ve been doing.

where in the world did you get the “fact” that the blood sugar response to carbs is over in two hours?"

Hey Brent, I think your logic is right. Caffeine makes carbs higher in GI. This is a bad thing in this case. The GI is increased due to the blunting of insulin sensitivity. If your insulin is less effective at clearing glucose, you’re gonna have a shitload in your blood.

My suspicion is that caffeine has a two-pronged effect. Not only does it negatively affect insulin but it may have an effect on glut transporters, namely glut-4.

Do some research and post what you find.

I have never put boundaries on my coffee intake, but usually have a cup pre-workout or kick my ass into training mode. I am going to start taking creatine, so if caffeine counterproductive to glucose uptake, will that significantly hinder creatine uptake as well?

To Doug K: I’ve seen graphs of the tests to determine glycemic response to different foods. The blood sugar levels usually peak after about 30 minutes and float down or below the level before ingestion by an hour and a half for both low GI and high GI carbs. I would assume certain meals with high fiber (like black beans), or heavy fats (like pizza), might release carbs over longer than 2 hours.