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Research trials demonstrate enhanced exercise performance as a result of probiotic supplementation.



Research trials demonstrate enhanced exercise performance as a result of probiotic supplementation.

Date: 2014-03-11
Author: BioCeuticals

Research trials demonstrate enhanced exercise performance as a result of probiotic supplementation.

Probiotics is a hot topic when it comes to cutting edge research and researchers are beginning to use probiotics in trials ranging from mastitis to allergy prevention.

Cecilia Shing is the lead researcher of the Sport Performance Optimisation Research Team (SPORT) at the University of Tasmania. Dr Shing’s research interests include supplementation and nutritional changes and their effect in supporting and enhancing athletic performance. 

Dr Shing has been researching the potential effects of probiotics on improving physical performance and gut health in athletes. Her area of research looks at the effect of exercising in high temperatures on inflammation, gut permeability and exercise performance. 

In vitro studies have demonstrated that exercise at high temperatures leads to gastrointestinal permeability and release of endotoxin into blood stream. Higher endotoxin levels were associated with a shorter exercise time to fatigue.1,2

In efforts to find ways to ameliorate this, Dr Shing investigated the effect of supplementation with 45 billion organisms of 10 strains of probiotics on gastrointestinal permeability, inflammatory markers and exercise performance in the heat. The results of this double-blind, placebo-controlled cross-over trial have recently been publish in the European Journal of Applied Physiology.3

The study recruited 10 male runners who were assigned to the placebo or probiotic group for four weeks. After four weeks, a three-week wash-out was observed before the runners then switched groups. At the beginning of the trial runners were tested to determine their baseline for maximal oxygen consumption (VO2max) and run to fatigue time.

The study showed that four weeks of supplementation was able to increase running time to fatigue in heat. It is thought that this effect is due to the effect probiotics have on maintaining the integrity of the gastrointestinal tract.

There have been many studies that highlight the positive effect that probiotics can have on gastrointestinal integrity.4,5 The study by Dr Shing adds further dimension to the research area of probiotics by demonstrating that probiotics can improve run time to fatigue in male runners as a potential effect of probiotics ability to maintain gastrointestinal integrity.

References

  1. Camus G, Nys M, Poortmans J, et al. Endotoxaemia, production of tumor necrosis factor alpha and polymorphonuclear neutrophil activation following strenuous exercise. Eur J Appl Physiol Occup Physiol 1998;79(1):69-68.
  2. Selkirk GA, McLellan TM, Wright HE, et al. Mild endotoxemia, NF-kappaB translocation, and cytokine increase during exertional stress in trained and untrained individuals. Am J Physiol Regul Integr Comp Physiol 2008;295(2):R611-623.
  3. Shing C, Peake J, Lim C, et al. Effects of probiotics supplementation on gastrointestinal permeability, inflammation and exercise performance in the heat. Eur J Apply Physiol 2014;114(1):93-103.
  4. Lata J, Jurankova J, Kapacova M, et al. Probiotics in hepatology. World J Gastroenterol 2011;17(24):2890-2896.
  5. Howarth G, Wang H. Role endogenous microbiota, probiotics and their biological products in human health. Nutrients 2013;5(1):58-81.


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