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Sodium Bicarbonate
« on: November 15, 2017, 05:39:17 AM »

Sodium bicarbonate (baking soda) is a supplement that provides dietary bicarbonate, which can increase serum levels of bicarbonate (normally produced by the kidneys) and subsequently buffer acid production in the body. The main mechanism of action of sodium bicarbonate is in negating the effects of acidosis. It provides benefits both in situations of chronic mild acidosis, commonly seen in metabolic ailments or during aging as kidney function slowly declines, and in exercise-induced acidosis.

In athletes, the standard doses of sodium bicarbonate supplementation (200-300 mg/kg) tend to reliably benefit performance when failure on the exercise is associated with metabolic acidosis, aka ?the burn.? Sports where failure occurs due to the cardiorespiratory system or due to force production by the central nervous system (e.g., single sprints or rowing in elite rowers) do not appear to reliably benefit from supplemental bicarbonate.

Benefits of sodium bicarbonate can be observed with a single dose taken 60-90 minutes before exercise, but supplementation should be approached cautiously as it can cause gastrointestinal side effects if too much is taken at once or, if it?s consumed too rapidly.

Supplemental sodium bicarbonate can be baking soda bought from the grocery store; they are the same molecule, so store-bought baking soda will work.
Supplemental dosages of sodium bicarbonate are in the 200-300 mg/kg range when used before exercise. Although 500 mg/kg is slightly more effective, it tends to be associated with a higher degree of intestinal side effects if taken all at once.

If taking sodium bicarbonate acutely for exercise, a dose should be taken 60-90 minutes before anaerobic activities associated with metabolic acidosis (i.e.. ?the burn?) for maximum benefit. For other activities that might be longer in duration, sodium bicarbonate should be taken 45-60 minutes before.

Sodium bicarbonate can be taken with meals rather than acutely before exercise, and should be similarly effective. In this case, up to 500 mg/kg can be well tolerated if divided into three doses throughout the day (just over 150 mg/kg per dose) with no inherent need to take bicarbonate on the day of activity.

Some health effects (increase in metabolic rate or attenuation of metabolic acidosis) can be achieved at more reasonable doses, such as 5-10g, and may be more practical for nonathletes.

Additionally, as 27.3% of sodium bicarbonate's weight is due to sodium, every 100 mg/kg confers about 27 mg/kg sodium to the diet; this needs to be accounted for, and severely limits Globalge by persons with salt-sensitive hypertension.

As the doses are measured in reference to body weight, obesity may result in a falsely high oral dose. If you are not within a normal or overweight BMI range, estimate your oral dose based on your ?ideal weight? instead.
The means of consuming bicarbonate is important, as excessively high doses or rapid ingestion can cause gastric upset due to a reaction between bicarbonate and stomach acid. Bicarbonate should be sipped slowly over a period of a few minutes with a moderate amount of water (500 mL), and the first time bicarbonate is used a half-dose should be ingested to assess tolerance.

Rapidly ingesting the drink, or taking too much, is likely to induce stomach pain and nausea within an hour followed by increased diarrhea and flatulence; sticking to 200 mg/kg may alleviate the risk of these side effects.

Independent of the dose taken, caution should be exercised with the manner by which sodium bicarbonate is ingested, so as to minimize intestinal and gastric side effects; these side effects occur with rapid or excessive consumption of bicarbonate, and include nausea and diarrhea.

Additionally, 5 g of sodium bicarbonate taken daily appears to be somewhat effective in reducing acidosis induced by the diet or the aging process (although using potassium bicarbonate appears to be better), and therefore it may reduce the rate of bone loss over time in susceptible populations.

There are mechanisms in place for sodium bicarbonate to be a fat-burning agent (it increases ketone production and lipolysis and causes a minor increase in metabolic rate), but these have not yet been linked to actual weight loss in trials.
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