Changing carb drink mix ratio

Apologies if this has already been discussed here.

If I wanted to alter my home brew carb drink mix (currently 2:1 glucose to fructose ratio), to reduce gastric load/bloating/distress, what ratio would you suggest changing to? Are people aware of different ratios to be more “mild/gentle” for digestion/absorption?

Obviously I can also reduce total carbs in the mix, look to slowly build back up, and there are other changes I can make, but I’m specifically wondering if the ratio could be significant factor to leverage.


How many grams/hour do you target? I aim for 1:.08, as 60g/hr of glucose seems to be the max.

My stomach is more sensitive to sucrose than maltodextrin. If I’m doing something where I don’t need a ton of carbs, table sugar is fine, but when I’m pushing up the numbers, I switch to 2:1 maltodextrin:fructose.

(Edited : I said glucose when I meant sucrose. It’s early)

I think this is your problem, you have it backwards. As you increase grams per hour you should get closer, not farther away from 1:1. Glucose and fructose absorb via different pathways. If I recall glucose (maltodextrin) maxes out at/near 60g per hour absorption rate, thus adding/increasing fructose you should be able to push to 120g +/- per hour at a 1:1 ratio (table sugar).

Caveats are you must train the gut to absorb this, appropriate water intake must accompany high carb intake and heat/humidity will decrease absorption rate.

Anecdotally I’ve only been able to push to 95-110g per hour and generally settle on about 100g for everything.

1 Like

No, table sugar is my problem. When I switch to malto:fructose no problem.

Edit: I realized I said glucose above when I meant sucrose

When using gel, I only use the 1:0.8 (Maurten, SIS Beta Fuel) When mixing Malto / Fructose, I use 1:1. Moving the ratio towards even does allow you to take in more carbs, because you’re holding Glucose steady (or lowering it) while increasing fructose and overall carbs.

Lots of threads on this general topic here. Good starting point here:

@MI-XC is right, you should be able to take in more carbs overall, if you move closer to 1:1. The theory / background on that is that Glucose (Maltodextrin, Dextrose) is a limiter in that studies have shown you can only absorb something like 67g of Glucose per hour although there will of course be some individual variability. Fructose is a different receptor / absorption mechanism so you don’t want to have the glucose absorption pathway maxxed out, with room to absorb more fructose if you’re trying to max out carb intake.

The reason people suggest Sucrose, is it’s basically 1:1 Glucose / Fructose. Although, a lot sweeter than a mix that contains Malto.

Hi all - I’m not the one with the issue. Malto:Fructose works great for me. I was just telling OP what works for me.

1 Like

I think the idea of a 60g glucose Max limit is just so silly.
Similar to 220-age for Max HR.
Maybe it’s a good average number & a place to start but it’s definitely not set in stone.
Every part of the human body is fully individual.
Unfortunately, max limits and ratios will just have to be found with trial and error :face_vomiting:.

Thanks for all this people. I’ll take it to 1:1 and see if I notice improvement.

I just use sugar

Great way to get 1:1 ratio and very cheap

Easier way for me to figure out how much I use the app by the name of Saturday

I have no connection with the app other than it’s been a game changer for me in being able to complete harder workouts and still recover very well

Also use it for racing with good success

Here is the link to my DIY home brew drink mix. In short it is 1/2 cup maltodextrin, 1/4 cup fructose, and 1 nuun tab for electrolytes and flavor. This gives a 2:1 maltodextrin:fructose ratio. Even though the measurements are in cups (e.g. volume) I have double checked the weight on a scale and it is well within measurement error (e.g. 1/2 cup maltodextrin = 60g, 1/4 cup fructose = 30g).

If you’re looking for 1:0.8 then you could do 1 cup maltodextrin and 3/4 cup (heaping) fructose. Should be close enough. You just need to figure out how to split it across your bottles since that will be 210g carbs.

1 Like

This is exactly what I do too. And I mix it all up in a big container, so I can scoop out 1/2 cup or 1/4 cup measurements for a month without having to ever mix anything new. Want 60g carbs? 1/2 cup. Want 120? Full cup. Want 90? 3/4 cup. Then just drop in your favorite salt tab (I use SIS and PH depending on the ride).


What container / size do you use? How do you ensure uniform mixing? How do you keep it dry / moisture out?

I put mine in 1-cup plastic containers with screw on lids similar to the picture below. These are single-serving so I just dump them into my bottle(s) the night before, dissolve, and refrigerate.

I use an empty Now CarboGain jug. I put in like 5 cups of Malto and 2.5 cups fructose, and then shake, swirl, roll, etc. Do it again. Then put in another 5/2.5 and do it all over again. I’ve never had an issue. I guess some people would worry that it’s not perfectly mixed, but it’s close enough for me!

1 Like

@Pbase thanks! I might give that a try once I use up my current jug of malto. :+1:

1 Like

I use a Glucose/Fructose drink at a ratio of 1:0.8. Research Ive been reading suggests upto 120 grams per hour. Although gastic emptyibg might limit the absorption rate. Also drink every 20 minutes of 200ml of the mix