For athletes participating in the London 2012 Olympics, here is a helpful tip!

According to a new research, you can now replace your dose of sports chews with the good old raisin as it provides the same workout boost.

Researchers from the University of California-Davis found that eating raisins can boost performance in athletes and long distance runners.

Many athletes like to fuel with energy gels or chews because they are easy to carry and digest.

The study published in the Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition evaluated the effects that natural versus commercial carbohydrate supplements have on endurance running performance.

Runners completed three randomised trials (raisins, chews and water only) separated by seven days.

The study found that those who ingested raisins or sports chews ran their 5 kilometres on average one minute faster than those who ingested only water.

Eating raisins and sports chews promoted higher carbohydrate oxidation compared to water only.

“Raisins are a great alternative to sport chews as they provide micronutrients, such as potassium and iron, and they do not have any added sugar, artificial flavour or colours,” said James Painter, nutrition research advisor for the California Raisin Marketing Board.

“As an added bonus, raisins are the most economical dried fruit according to the United Stated Department of Agriculture, so they are cost effective and convenient for use during exercise,” he said.