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Nitrate Supplements Benefit Muscles When Exercising In Low Oxygen

September 22, 2016: 12:00 AM EST
A Belgian study involving 27 “moderately trained” athletes who were given nitrate supplements prior to interval training in hypoxic conditions found significant muscle benefits after only five weeks. The sprint interval sessions consisted of short, intense cycling sessions three times a week, in both normal oxygen and reduced oxygen (hypoxia) conditions. After five weeks of training, muscle fiber composition changed with the enhanced nitrate intake when training in low oxygen conditions. This indicated the ability to perform well at higher elevations where oxygen is reduced. The researchers cautioned that there is very little information about the effects of extended use of nitrate supplements. Leafy green vegetables, however, are naturally rich in nitrates.
Stefan De Smet et al., ". Nitrate Intake Promotes Shift in Muscle Fiber Type Composition during Sprint Interval Training in Hypoxia", Frontiers in Physiology, September 22, 2016, © De Smet et al.
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