A Systematic Review and Meta-analysis on Sodium Bicarbonate Administration and Equine Running Performance: Is it Time to Stop Horsing Around With Baking Soda?

Denham, Joshua ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0001-5804-4960 and Hulme, Adam (2020) A Systematic Review and Meta-analysis on Sodium Bicarbonate Administration and Equine Running Performance: Is it Time to Stop Horsing Around With Baking Soda? Journal of Equine Veterinary Science, 95:103281. pp. 1-7. ISSN 0737-0806


Abstract

Sodium bicarbonate administration in the hours prior to exercise has been used as a performance-enhancing substance in horses since the late 1980s. Although sodium bicarbonate administration to racehorses 24 hours before racing is a banned practice in most racing industries, whether or not it improves running performance in racehorses is currently unclear. The aim of this systematic review and meta-analysis was to establish whether or not acute sodium bicarbonate administration improves running performance in trained Standardbred and Thoroughbred horses. Seven randomized controlled trials, including eight experimental (exercise) trials and 74 horses, were included after a comprehensive search for relevant studies that met the inclusion criteria. Results indicated that sodium bicarbonate administration at 2.5–5 hours prior to a standardized treadmill test to exhaustion or simulated race (time-trial) does not influence running performance (number of horses, the overall effect [95% CI]: 32, –0.13 [–0.64 to 0.37] and 42, 0.01 [–0.42 to 0.44], respectively, both P >.05). The included studies demonstrated minimal heterogeneity (I2 = 0%–2%), low risks of bias according to the Cochrane Risk of Bias Tool and a lack of publication bias. On the basis of these findings, there is high-quality evidence to suggest that sodium bicarbonate administration does not improve running performance in trained Standardbred or Thoroughbred horses.


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Item Type: Article (Commonwealth Reporting Category C)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: No Faculty
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: No Faculty
Date Deposited: 13 Dec 2021 03:08
Last Modified: 15 Dec 2021 03:29
Uncontrolled Keywords: Exercise performance; Horse; Milkshake; NaHCO3; Racing
Fields of Research (2008): 11 Medical and Health Sciences > 1106 Human Movement and Sports Science > 110602 Exercise Physiology
07 Agricultural and Veterinary Sciences > 0707 Veterinary Sciences > 070799 Veterinary Sciences not elsewhere classified
Fields of Research (2020): 30 AGRICULTURAL, VETERINARY AND FOOD SCIENCES > 3009 Veterinary sciences > 300999 Veterinary sciences not elsewhere classified
42 HEALTH SCIENCES > 4207 Sports science and exercise > 420702 Exercise physiology
Identification Number or DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jevs.2020.103281
URI: http://eprints.usq.edu.au/id/eprint/43614

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