Effective use of potatoes

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  • Effective use of potatoes
  • Premier Icon tomd
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    This study has been getting quite a bit of news coverage today. Basically, mashed potato and water were as effective at boosting performance for a ride followed by a TT. The limitations seem to it was for well trained cyclists, and only a sample of 12 people.

    “Potato ingestion is as effective as carbohydrate gels to support prolonged cycling performance”

    https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2019/10/191018125512.htm

    Are there any studies that show that gels are beneficial over say a slice of white bread & jam for your average “sport” rider? I do buy them from time to time for events, as much for convience as anything. Happy to save my cash though. I’m not sure I could stomach mashed potato during a ride.

    Premier Icon dirkpitt74
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    Mashed potato tastes better than most gels…..
    I’ll be filling my pockets with lovely buttery mash from now on 😀

    ton
    Member

    any normal healthy food is better than gels/sport/sugary/manmade food stuff for fueling sport. imho.

    Premier Icon igm
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    🥧 🍰🍔🌮🌭🍦🥟🍿🍩🍟🥨

    I don’t think anyone has suggested gels are “better” as such have they? Its just they are easy to carry, quick to ingest, and easier to digest than a lump of stogy white bread or other normal carb sources.

    ton
    Member

    Its just they are easy to carry, quick to ingest, and easier to digest than a lump of stogy white bread or other

    pork pies and ham butties fit in my rucksac just fine….. ;o)

    Premier Icon tomd
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    I don’t think anyone has suggested gels are “better” as such have they?

    I think a lot of the marketing around these products is designed to give the impression that they’re hi-tech, betterer and essential for peak performance. They certainly don’t say “Proven to provide the same fueling as a king edward potato, at 10x the cost”

    For example, TORQ say:

    TORQ Gel is a naturally flavoured high-potency hypertonic energy gel, containing no artificial sweeteners or colours, with a silky smooth melt-in-the-mouth texture. TORQ Gel forms part of the TORQ Fuelling System, so can be used alongside TORQ’s energy drinks, bars and chews to fuel optimal performances.

    Premier Icon thisisnotaspoon
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    From the article:

    Those consuming potatoes experienced significantly more gastrointestinal bloating, pain and flatulence than the other groups

    Sorry Ton, turns out Pie and mash isn’t going to be the race fuel of champions!

    TheBrick
    Member

    Just need a pie and.mash in a easy to transport form for eating on the go.

    TheBrick
    Member

    Just dribbled on desk thinking of pie and mash.

    avdave2
    Member

    Those consuming potatoes experienced significantly more gastrointestinal bloating, pain and flatulence than the other groups, however. This may be a result of the larger volume of potatoes needed to match the glucose provided by the gels, Burd said.

    So it basically says that hey we’ve discovered if you take the same amount of glucose it doesn’t matter whether that came from gels or potatoes. Well no I guess not because it’s the same amount of glucose.

    The interesting thing would be to know how quickly each had an effect, If you keep your fuelling constant it shouldn’t matter but it seems you’d also want to know how good potato is if you’ve hit wall and don’t now whether to reach for a gel or a packet of Smash. I used to carry cold baked potatoes with me when riding but it turns out that it’s the one thing that gives me indigestion so I gave up on that.

    TheBrick
    Member

    Champions of taste perhaps

    Premier Icon tomd
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    Just need a pie and.mash in a easy to transport form for eating on the go.

    Been done. Get yourself some baby meal pouches like these:

    https://www.waitrose.com/ecom/products/ella%27s-kitchen-organic-seriously-comforting-cottage-pie-with-a-pinch-of-cinnamon—stage-3-baby-food/772991-116839-116840?gclid=Cj0KCQjw0brtBRDOARIsANMDykbLaOuHjVacNR8EBs_pMsPFgXswkp9h15t7SEI2Oq8UKINvjNuMVXcaAjl0EALw_wcB&gclsrc=aw.ds

    They actually taste OK, just less salt than adults stuff. By lord I’ve opened plenty of these to know. Some of the kids fruit puches, especially the Aldi ones would be cost effective ride fuel. There’s no VAT either so that helps the relative cost over sports products.

    fossy
    Member

    It’s all carbs. So a scientific study was needed to tell us this. Wow.

    avdave2
    Member

    For example, TORQ say:

    To be fair to them they do have some good information on their website which seems well balanced to me suggesting that their products are not magic but a convenient and easy way to get nutrition in very specific circumstances.

    It’s all carbs. So a scientific study was needed to tell us this. Wow.

    Very much one of those studies by the Institute of the Bleeding Obvious

    Premier Icon molgrips
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    I’d have bet on that conclusion. All you need really is carbs unless you’re doing some sort of extreme ITT or 24hr solo or something.

    ALL gels are is liquid food that doesn’t go off in an easy to use package. It’s not magic, no-one is under that impression before the STW cynic brigade turn up and start banging on about it as if we’re all idiots.

    Any carbs work for delivering energy in long hard rides, the simpler the better as the glucose gets into your blood quicker and more easily. So yes, jam sarnies will work. But

    – Sandwiches are a PITA to carry with you without being crushed
    – They are hard to get out and eat one-handed
    – I’ve found that flour related products e.g. bread or welshcakes give me indigestion if I’m going for it – certainly pork pies and such do too. Although salty protein is needed if going for more than 4-5 hours

    any normal healthy food is better than gels/sport/sugary/manmade food stuff for fueling sport. imho.

    If you’re just out for a nice scenic ride then yes of course. But if you are going for it, then as above gels/carb powder have advantages. You still eat the proper food when you get home.

    I don’t use gels though, I use plain maltodextrin powder mixed about half the max strength. It’s cheaper than actual food, it’s the easiest of all to eat as you just drink, it tastes of nothing so I mix it with squash and hence it tastes pretty good unlike most. Torq energy is marginally better I think in a race situation because it’s fructose/maltodxtrin but it’s sodding expensive. You can make your own fructose/malto mix for cheap but it ends up really sweet and anything you can flavour it with is going to sweeten it further.

    If you are using SiS or similar, don’t mix it the recommended dose – I reckon that’s the cause of most people’s stomach issues. Plus SiS is horrible.

    So to summarise – normal food if you can carry and eat it; if pressing on then plain malto powder in your water and half strength.

    Premier Icon molgrips
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    Oh btw, better read the whole article:

    Those consuming potatoes experienced significantly more gastrointestinal bloating, pain and flatulence than the other groups, however. This may be a result of the larger volume of potatoes needed to match the glucose provided by the gels

    So like I said – gels easier to eat and digest.

    Premier Icon molgrips
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    It’s all carbs. So a scientific study was needed to tell us this. Wow.

    Cynical sod. How do you know that all carbs are good for riding? How do you even know what a carbohydrate is? Cos of science like this done by scientists like these.

    The OP had a pretty specific question, and these scientists tried out an even more specific version of it (and probably more things besides) and gave an answer based literally on science not just cynicism and ideas of superiority.

    Sorry, but this attitude pisses me off.

    jonba
    Member

    I’m sure potatoes are in one of the feed station portables book. I occasionally carry them on training ride. Small amount of strong cheese in them and they are great. I get laughed at but they are cheap and relatively healthy compared to bars etc.

    I can see why mash would be similar to a gel in terms of sugar delivery but I’d never be able to eat it when racing in a bunch. For that reason, gels and drinks are still in.

    FWIW I bet white rice is the same, you can make that into a portable snack. Loads of pro teams use it for long races.

    Premier Icon thisisnotaspoon
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    It’s all carbs. So a scientific study was needed to tell us this. Wow.

    TBH I thought it was quite surprising, I presume one is a much more complex carb than the other. I wonder if their data shows how rapidly either was being absorbed or if as someone said up there it relies on the body being in a steady state and eating 60g of carbs doesn’t really matter if that get’s digested in 60 seconds or 60 minutes as long as you’re eating consistently.

    Sorry, but this attitude pisses me off.

    Yea, but you just know don’t you, like knowing that vaccines are bad for you, scientists are idiot funded by big-pharma big-smash.

    Premier Icon bruneep
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    https://cyclingtips.com/2008/10/ultimate-cycling-snack/

    Do this when we have left over* boiled new potatoes .
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    *which isn’t often

    whitestone
    Member

    I suspect that the true answer is the inevitable “it depends”.

    If you’re a pro-racer riding close to threshold pace then getting as close to the recommended 1g of carbs per kg of bodyweight per hour is going to be important, especially in a stage race. For the rest of us going along at a steady pace with rests then not so much.

    I’ve just checked a gel packet (SIS) and there’s 23g of carbs in it so for me (at 85kg) I’d have to be taking a couple of those plus another source of carbs every hour. Just the thought makes me queasy. Then again my events aren’t short four or five hour ones but sixteen or more hours, often on multiple days, I’m going to be using “natural” food wherever possible – my guts (and teeth) just wouldn’t stand that amount of gels.

    Of course the pros have people handing out musettes and team cars with a near endless supply of food so don’t really have the problem of carrying a whole ride’s worth of food at once.

    I happen to have been listening to various podcasts about on-bike/race nutrition and one of the comments from the presenters was that pro riders eat a lot during the race, way more than amateur riders, but don’t then gorge themselves afterwards for recovery.

    Premier Icon matt_outandabout
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    pork pies and ham butties fit in my rucksac just fine

    I’m liking the cut of ton’s Jib…

    *Breaks wind*

    Premier Icon Kuco
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    Ultra runners have been popping boiled spuds for years on runs.

    Spin
    Member

    any normal healthy food is better than gels/sport/sugary/manmade food stuff for fueling sport. imho.

    For low intensity activity I agree. For mid to high intensity activity I disagree.

    jonba

    I can see why mash would be similar to a gel in terms of sugar delivery but I’d never be able to eat it when racing in a bunch

    Same here, gravy everywhere

    joshvegas
    Member

    So like I said – gels easier to eat and digest.

    Gels have been known to give me painful wind culminating in untrustable farts.

    I’m with Ton. Can’t beat an energy pie or 2…

    67507330_10220376216739358_7046714793431924736_n

    PJay
    Member

    Wasn’t there a similar report not all that long ago suggesting that milk outperformed the whole gambit of sports recovery drinks?

    Premier Icon jca
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    You may attract unwanted wildlife if used as a trail food however…

    badger loves....

    Isn’t it just a question of getting the right balance of protein, fat and carbs (and the right variety of quicker and slower digesting carbs) at the right time?

    The peril with mashed potato would be if you made it with lots of butter the higher fat content would slow down the digestion of the carbs, so you’d need to get that right!

    Well it doesn’t have to be a case of either / or. You can have them in conjunction with other things and have a bit of variety. maybe even mashed sweet potato or parsnip and gels at different points in the ride. At the etape du tour this year I carried a load of gels and usual stuff with me (was worried about there not being enough food at the food stations….couldn’t have been more wrong), but didn’t touch any of it and had cheese and ham baguettes, nuts, dried fruit and cake all washed down with proper full fat coke that was offered up and the food stations. So much better and nicer than the gels and other artificial supplements. I felt much better during and post ride than I do on gels and other stuff. I get gels are a nice convenient form factor, and still use gels, but you can’t beat proper food.

    I heard this on the radio this morning and apparently there was a chap recently who broke the record for running the 3 peaks challenge and he was fuelled on Potatoes. So obviously worked for him.

    Shred
    Member

    Potatoes have abou 17g of carbs per 100g. Obviously you need more cards per hour than that for hard activity, and for going over 5 hours, that is a lot of weight to carry around.

    stgeorge
    Member

    Bike packing energy

    Sorry didnt work, 2/10 must try harder

    stgeorge
    Member

    try this one

    Thats better

    TiRed
    Member

    Carbs is carbs. When I race 12hr TTs I take liquidised porridge, rice pudding, whatever. I can’t chew when racing, so I have to drink instead.

    Shred

    Member
    Potatoes have abou 17g of carbs per 100g.

    What’s the rest? Mostly water?

    ton
    Member

    esselgruntfuttock

    Member

    I’m with Ton. Can’t beat an energy pie or 2…

    that photo makes me feel queasy……….. ;o)

    Premier Icon maccruiskeen
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    It’s all carbs. So a scientific study was needed to tell us this. Wow.

    No. We need public relations / marketing strategy that  uses a bit of ‘science’* because its cheaper to give media outlets a ready-written story that appears to have some sort of scientific revelation in it than to pay for adverts to tell us that

    Its a PR exercise in turning a negative connotation into a positive one. The ‘Nutritionist’ pseudo-science fad has for decades now being demonising ’empty calories’ – meaning all the foods we used to describe as ‘staples’- potaotoes, wheat, rice, maize depending on where you are in the world have been labelled as ‘bad’. Meanwhile the sports supplement  industry has been packaging and marketing… errr…. convenient packets of calories and putting significant PR effort in to telling people that calories are ‘good’.

    Theres not expectation that elite athletes will be stuffing potatoes in their jersey pockets – obviously the place to stuff them is down the front of your shorts**- the aim is to sell potatoes to everyone else.

    *its not by any stretch of the imagination ‘science’ – the exercise is at most a demonstration.

    ** no Ton I said ‘front’ – don’t stuff them down the back – that’s not how you impress the ladies.

    Premier Icon tomd
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    This stuff could be a good shout as a thrifty yet eadible potator alternative

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Glutinous_rice

    I’ve had in asia where it’s cooked into slabs and cut into blocks, usually with some cocunut or stuff to sweeten it added. It’s easier to eat than a potato, something like 28g carbs per 100g for cooked white rice.

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