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The study I researched was the “”Effects of sweet cassava polysaccharide extracts on endurance exercise in rats. Sweet cassava is a major carbohydrate in many countries and it contains monosaccharides and polysaccharides. It was found that high-carbohydrate foods could increase muscle glycogen content, which can allow one to exercise for a longer time and not tire as quickly. The aim of the study was to examine the effects of the sweet cassava polysaccharides (SCP) on exercise performance in rats. The duration of time spent exercising, blood metabolites, blood glucose and insulin were measured. It was hypothesized that the sweet cassava polysaccharides would increase the muscle glycogen in the rats and increase the running time to exhaustion.
To perform the experiment, thirty, five-week-old, 180-200 g male Sprague-Dawley rats were collected. They were kept at a temperature of 24 ± 1„? and the humidity was also controlled. The thirty rats were divided into three groups of ten: the control (C), exercise (Ex), and exercise plus SCP (ExSCP) groups. All of the rats were fed “”standard rat chow”” primarily made of carbohydrates.
How it works
Then, the SCP was prepared by forming pellets and grinding it into cassava flour. The cassava flour was mixed with water and centrifuged to isolate it. Then the SCP was also purified through filtration, ultimately being freeze-dried. The rats in the Ex and ExSCP groups took part in an exercise program for five days. The rats in the ExSCP group were fed 500 mg SCP/kg body weight/day. It was broken into two 250 mg/kg doses a day, with one being after morning exercise and the other in the evening. Then all of the rats were put down to determine the glycogen content in the gastrocnemius and soleus muscles and the blood metabolites.
It was found that the ExSCP group could run for a longer time than the Ex groups before becoming exhausted. The ExSCP group could run for 64 min while the Ex groups could run for 43 min, so the ExSCP group could run longer by 49%. After running, it was observed that the glycogen content in the soleus and gastrocnemius muscles of the Ex and ExSCP groups were lower than the rats in the C group. The glycogen, blood glucose, and free fatty acid levels were much higher in the ExSCP group than the Ex group. But there were no significant differences in the blood glucose or free fatty acid levels between the ExSCP and C groups.
Therefore, SCP performs much like other plant polysaccharides, in that it can increase muscle glycogen content after consumption. The SCP supplementation was able to extend the running time to exhaustion in the rats since it aided in maintaining stable blood glucose, free fatty acid levels, and higher muscle glycogen. However, there is a need for more research on the effects of SCP on liver glycogen since liver glycogen is needed for maintaining stable glucose levels in the circulation.
This work was authored by Chia Hung Yen from the Department of Biological Science and Technology, National Pingtung University of Science & Technology in Pingtung, Taiwan, Te Hung Tsao from the Physical Education Section of General Education, at National Sun Yat-Sen University in Kaohsiung City, Taiwan, Cheng Uan Huang from the Department of Recreation Sport and Health Promotion, National Pingtung University of Science & Technology in Pingtung, Taiwan, Chang Bin Yang from the Department of Physical Education, National Dong Hwa Univeristy, HuaLien, Taiwan, and Chung Sheng Kuo from Chang Gung University of Science and Technology in Taoyuan, Taiwan. The authors all contributed to the design study, how the muscle and blood were collected and data analyses. Their study was partly supported by NSC100-2410-H-110-055.
This work relates to what was learned in the first quarter since we learned about the four macromolecules, proteins, fats, carbohydrates, and nucleic acids. This article discussed glycogen, blood glucose and free fatty acid levels in rats. We learned in class that animals stored their energy from carbohydrates in glycogen. This study took what we learned a step further and showed some of the effects of carbohydrates and glycogen on the body.
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