At the end of last year, in Qatar's 2022 World Cup round of 16 football match between Portugal and Switzerland, Portuguese striker Ronaldo spit out water.

(AFP file photo)

[Health Channel/Comprehensive Report] In sports competitions, players can sometimes be seen making "spit water" movements, such as baseball players and football players, which are often unbelievable.

In this regard, the nutritionist said that in fact, there is a scientific basis for players to spit and spit water, because the players drink mostly glucose or maltodextrin sugar water, gargling with sugar water can stimulate the nerves in the mouth and send messages to the brain, making It produces the "illusion of abundant energy", so it can reduce the level of effort felt by athletes, help maintain concentration and delay fatigue.

Functional Medicine Dietitian Lu Meibao posted on her Facebook fan page "The Power of Food. Lu Meibao Nutritionist" using World Cup players as an example to illustrate that it is often seen that players on the field spit everywhere, or spit out water before drinking it.

In fact, spitting is due to the secretion of a protein mucus called MUC5B during strenuous exercise. At this time, spitting out the mucus in the mouth will help the game breathe smoothly and improve sports performance.

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In addition, regarding spitting out the water, she mentioned that this is scientifically known as "carb rinsing or mouth rinsing/rinse", because most of the players' drinks are glucose or maltodextrin sugar water (non-artificial sweetener solution), rinse for about 5-10 seconds and spit it out.

Sugar stimulates the mouth to create the illusion of eating in the brain

Lu Meibao explained that when the sugar water is in the mouth, the sugar can stimulate the nerve receptors in the mouth and transmit the message to the central nervous system of the brain, making the brain think that food is about to enter the digestive system, but in fact there is no.

After the brain is "deceived", it will produce the "illusion of abundant energy", so it can reduce the level of effort the athlete feels, and help to maintain concentration, that is, the mouth-brain connection effect (Mouth-Brain Connection) .

She went on to add that the next time you feel tired, you can try a few small candies to relieve fatigue.

In addition, some studies have found that gargling with sugar water can improve exercise performance by 2-3% for exercise within 1 hour, such as cycling; but if the exercise needs to last for more than 1 hour, it is still necessary to properly supplement easily absorbed carbohydrates, because Studies have also shown that soccer players can improve their kicking performance when they consume carbohydrates at the right time.

Glycogen energy consumed through replenishment can maintain combat effectiveness and achieve the effect of delaying fatigue.

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  • sports

  • protein

  • fatigue

  • glucose

  • carbohydrate

  • Maltodextrin

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