FTP #15: Bryan Saunders, PhD – Buffer agents in cycling: The role of ß-Alanine and Sodium Bicarbonate

FTP #14: James Morton, PhD – The groundwork of Performance Nutrition in Pro cycling: Part 2
October 23, 2019

FTP #15: Bryan Saunders, PhD – Buffer agents in cycling: The role of ß-Alanine and Sodium Bicarbonate

Guest Bio

Dr. Bryan Saunders

Dr. Bryan Saunders has a degree in Sport Science and Mathematics from Nottingham Trent University, a master’s degree in Sports Science from Loughborough University and a PhD in Sports Nutrition at Nottingham Trent University. Bryan then went on to perform 2 postdocs at the University of São Paulo in Brazil where he is currently a full-time Researcher and a considerable part of his research has been focusing in exercise physiology, with a particular focus on Beta-Alanine & sodium bicarbonate effects in exercise with some of this research focused specifically in cyclists.

On this Episode:

  • The advances of research on cycling
  • The role of buffer agents in fatigue from high-intensity efforts
  • Sodium Bicarbonate effects in cycling
  • Recommended dosis and supplementation protocol
  • Gastrointestinal symptoms with Sodium Bicarbonate use
  • Beta-alanine use in cycling
  • Recommended dosis and supplementation protocol
  • Minimizing the tingling and itchiness with Beta-alanine
  • Practical applications

Articles mentioned during the episode:

Sodium Bicarbonate research
Saunders, B., Sale, C., Harris, R. C., & Sunderland, C. (2014). Sodium bicarbonate and high-intensity-cycling capacity: variability in responsesInternational journal of sports physiology and performance9(4), 627-632.


Beta-alanine research
Hobson, R. M., Saunders, B., Ball, G., Harris, R. C., & Sale, C. (2012). Effects of β-alanine supplementation on exercise performance: a meta-analysisAmino acids43(1), 25-37.


Saunders, B., Elliott-Sale, K., Artioli, G. G., Swinton, P. A., Dolan, E., Roschel, H., … & Gualano, B. (2017). β-alanine supplementation to improve exercise capacity and performance: a systematic review and meta-analysisBr J Sports Med51(8), 658-669.

Perim, P., Marticorena, F.M., Ribeiro, F., Barreto, G., Gobbi, N., Kerksick, C., Dolan, E., Saunders, B. Can the Skeletal Muscle Carnosine Response to Beta-Alanine Supplementation Be Optimized? Front Nutr 27;6:135

Beta-alanine with Sodium bicarbonate
Sale, C., Saunders, B., Hudson, S., Wise, J. A., Harris, R. C., & Sunderland, C. D. (2011). Effect of β-alanine plus sodium bicarbonate on high-intensity cycling capacityMedicine and science in sports and exercise43(10), 1972-1978.

Related episodes:

Jamie Pugh, PhD – Feeling lighter from start to finish: Minimizing gastrointestinal symptoms in cyclists

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