STORAGE AND MOBILIZATION OF MUSCLE GLYCOGEN IN EXERCISING HORSES FED A FAT-SUPPLEMENTED DIET
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In a switchback experiment, six mature mares were fed a control and a fat-supplemented diet while being exercised in a galloping regimen. After three weeks adaptation to each diet, horses performed an exercise test (ET) consisting of four, 600-m gallops. Muscle biopsies were obtained before and after the ET, and blood samples were taken before, during and throughout recovery from the ET. Resting glycogen concentration in the biceps femoris muscle increased (P<.05) from 15.77 mg/g wet tissue when the horses were fed the control diet to 22.89 mg/g when they were fed the fats-supplemented diet. During the ET, the amount of glycogen mobilized by the muscle increased (P<.05) from 6.99 mg/g when the horses were fed the control diet to 13.09 mg/g when they were fed the fat-supplemented diet. When the horses were fed the fat-supplemented diet, they galloped faster (P<.09), at a constant heart rate, during the last two gallops of the ET. Thus, adapting exercising horses to a fat-supplemented diet increased muscle glycogen concentrations, which appeared to enhance their performance past the anaerobic threshold. 1990, William E. Jones, All Rights Reserved. All rights reserved.