Tyrosine administration may counter exercise fatigue in a warm environment, but the typical dose is inconclusive, with little known about higher doses. We explored how three tyrosine doses influenced the circulating ratio of tyrosine/amino acids competing for brain uptake and hypothesized that a medium and high dose would enhance exercise performance in a warm environment.
Eight recreationally trained, non–heat-acclimated male individuals (mean ± SD age, 23 ± 4 yr; stature, 181 ± 7 cm; body mass, 76.1 ± 5.9 kg; peak oxygen uptake, 4.1 ± 0.5 L·min−1) performed a peak oxygen uptake test, two familiarization trials, then four experimental trials in a randomized order separated by 7 d. Before exercise, subjects drank 2 × 300 mL sugar-free drinks delivering 0 (PLA), 150 (LOW), 300 (MED), or 400 (HIGH) mg·kg body mass−1 tyrosine in a double-blind fashion. Subjects performed a 60-min constant intensity cycling then a simulated time trial in 30°C and 60% relative humidity.
Time trial performance (P = 0.579) was not influenced by tyrosine ingestion. The plasma ratio of tyrosine/∑(free-tryptophan, leucine, isoleucine, valine, phenylalanine, methionine), a key determinant of brain tyrosine influx, increased relative to PLA (P < 0.001). The increase was similar (P > 0.05) in MED (7.7-fold) and HIGH (8.2-fold), and greater than that in LOW (5.3-fold; P < 0.05). No differences existed between trials in core and skin temperature, heart rate, RPE, or thermal sensation (P > 0.05).
Exercise performance in a warm environment was not influenced by tyrosine availability in recreationally trained male individuals. The results provide novel data informing future studies, on the tyrosine dose maximizing the circulating ratio of tyrosine/amino acids competing for brain uptake.