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Old 10-12-2009, 05:26 AM   #1
liftsiron
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Antioxidants!!!!!!!!!!!

posted by Basskiller on WCBB



Antioxidants
Of course, I always have to review the scientific literature prior to writing an article, but this article in particular took more research than usual. My ambition was to be able to provide clear-cut recommendations based on the available scientific evidence. This was far more complicated than you can imagine. The answers are not plainly spelled out and there are many antioxidants. So, up front, let me tell you that science has yet to provide the exact magical antioxidant formula beneficial for resistancetrained athletes or any other group. Most lay articles on antioxidants give the false impression that lots of everything is what works.That’s certainly not the case and even if it were, the expenses involved and the number of pills one would have to pop down each day don’t seem too appealing.While there are a large variety of antioxidants under investigation right now, this article will only cover those that have been researched with respect to exercise performance or recovery.This means that some fairly popular antioxidants may not be covered. As more information becomes available, I will update the recommendations presented in this article.This article will provide some background information and discuss several antioxidants and provide some sensible recommendations.

A little bit of background
I first heard about these things referred to as free radicals and the free radical fighters referred to as antioxidants back in the late 80’s. Free radicals are atoms or molecules with an unpaired electron.These “evil doers” are volatile and unpredictable. Like little magnets, they are attracted to other atoms and molecules.The body produces them in a number of reactions and even uses them as defense mechanisms for certain cells. These free radical fighters or antioxidants interact with free radicals and donate the electron needed to make the free radicals stable again. In the process, however, the antioxidant becomes a free radical, although far less reactive.An antioxidant can also act as an oxidant (free radical promoter) under the right conditions, and this has made some researchers hesitant to make any recommendations.The fear is that excessive antioxidant supplementation may lead to increased free radical production. At this point however, there is evidence linking antioxidants to disease prevention, health maintenance, and possibly anti-aging.

Whether you lift weights or run, the body produces free radicals [1, 2].At low levels of exercise intensity, the body’s internal antioxidant defense systems can handle the challenge of dealing with free radicals [3].An area of concern, however, is the production of free radicals during more intense exercise such as weight training and sprinting or during very long periods of exercise such as a triathlon [4]. Free radicals produced during exercise include intermediates such as superoxides, hydrogen peroxide, and hydroxyl radicals. About 4-5% of the oxygen from metabolism will form superoxides. The superoxides can then form hydrogen peroxides.The hydrogen peroxides can interact with unsaturated fatty acids and initiate a chain of events resulting in lipid peroxidation.This is important to us because lipid peroxidation can lead to damaged muscle cells.One would think that some antioxidant supplementation may decrease the harmful effects of exercise and perhaps improve recovery and/or performance.While research on animals has shown that antioxidant supplementation can improve muscular performance, research on humans hasn’t always been as convincing [5]. Combine this with the fact that researchers are concerned that excess consumption of antioxidants may increase the potential for oxidative stress, and now you can see why sorting through all this information is not so simple. The following sections will examine the potential benefits of several antioxidants. Sometimes researchers draw conclusions and make statements regarding the effectiveness of antioxidant supplementation when their study looked at samples from only one or two tissues. It is possible that other tissues may have experienced different effects, but you would not know about this because those tissues were not studied. This is just another reason why we need to consider the information available from a variety of studies.

Vitamin C or Ascorbic Acid
Ascorbic acid is more commonly known as vitamin C. While it was first isolated and discovered in 1928 by Albert SzentGyorgi, two-time Nobel Prize winner Linus Pauling really brought it into the limelight. In 1976 Pauling co-authored a paper by Ewan Cameron where they administered 10 grams of vitamin C each day to terminal cancer patients [6]. While other investigators criticized the study due to a possible placebo effect, the general public quickly took a liking to vitamin C. While recommendations from various researchers have differed considerably, recent evidence may simplify things somewhat.

Research on the effects of vitamin C on exercise performance indicates that ascorbic acid may prevent the formation of exercise-induced free radicals [7].Ten healthy male subjects ranging in age from 18-30 years cycled on a stationary bicycle until voluntary exhaustion on two different occasions. During one trial, the subjects were given 1,000 mg of vitamin C (L-ascorbic acid, Hoffman-LaRoche, UK) before the cycle ergometer test and on the other trial they received a placebo.A comparison of pre- and post-exercise free radical measures indicated that vitamin C reduced free radical production levels significantly. In fact, after treatment, free radical production was even less for the post-exercise measurements than it was for the control condition’s pre-exercise measurements. Since we would expect normally that post-exercise measurements of free radical production to be greater after exercise, the fact that vitamin C can lower these values is an important finding. This work is supported by additional research concluding that “exercise-induced oxidative stress was highest when subjects did not supplement with vitamin C” [8].The previous studies are contrasted with another study which administered 2,000 mg of vitamin C to runners and found that it did not prevent an increase in oxidative stress [9]. However, supplementation did decrease the levels of oxidative stress during recovery after exercise.

Acute exercise may also cause an increase in the susceptibility of low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C) to oxidation [10]. Chronic exercise appears to decrease this susceptibility [10]. In another study with vitamin C, 1,000 mg administered to runners immediately before a four-hour race inhibited the increase in LDL susceptibility to oxidation after exercise [11]. This is important because current theories behind the development of atherosclerosis (where fatty plaques clog up your arteries) support the view that LDL must be oxidized before it can start to contribute to the disease process. The observation that LDL-C oxidation is prevented by ascorbic acid supports the notion that at least some of the circulating oxidized LDL-C originates from oxidative events. The studies presented thus far dealt exclusively with running or cycling exercise. Research has shown that weight training generates free radicals [2], but no studies have reported the effects of vitamin C supplementation on resistance exercise-generated free radical production. There is some research available on vitamin C and contractile function damage [12]. Twenty four subjects were given either a placebo, 400 mg of vitamin C, or 400 mg vitamin E for 21 days prior to and for 7 days after performing 60 minutes of stepping up and down to a box. No differences were observed immediately post-exercise.

During recovery in the first 24 h post-exercise, maximal voluntary contraction was greater in the group supplemented with vitamin C. The results suggest “that prior vitamin C supplementation may exert a protective effect against eccentric exercise-induced muscle damage” [12]

The big question at this point is, just how does vitamin C act as an antioxidant? It’s watersoluble and is thought to act to regenerate vitamin E [13].After vitamin E interacts with a free radical, it neutralizes the free radical but also becomes a pro-oxidant.Vitamin C neutralizes E in its oxidative form, thereby regenerating E. However, in E deficient rats, extra C does not improve performance [14]. So while C may interact with E, it does not decrease the need for E. However, since the two vitamins interact, there may be advantages to taking them together to insure that both are available when free radicals come around.

With dosages of about 250 mg or less, about 80% of vitamin C is absorbed, while at dosages of 2 grams or more, only 50% may be absorbed [15].The rise in the blood peaks at about 30 mg per liter, primarily because the kidneys start to filter and excrete more ascorbic acid into the urine. This suggests that small amounts of vitamin C several times per day, may be better than one large dose at once.

Vitamin E or Tocopherols
While vitamin C is water soluble, vitamin E is a fat or lipid soluble vitamin. This sets up an interesting notion that vitamin E may combat free radical production in different parts of our cells (such as the cell membrane), as compared to vitamin C (in fluid compartments).

Other lipid components, like low-density lipoproteins, are susceptible to attacks by free radicals (or oxidative stress).Vitamin E may decrease the effects of oxidative stress on these lipid components. In addition, evidence exists that mixed tocopherols and, in particular, certain tocotrienols (different forms of vitamin E),may be better than d- or dlalpha tocopherol (the kind most people take) [16-19]. None of the research done on humans thus far (pertaining to exercise and oxidative stress) has compared the effects of mixed forms of vitamin E versus a single form of vitamin E.My personal view is that future research will demonstrate that a vitamin E mixture (of the different chemical forms of vitamin E) works better than just administering a single form of vitamin E (ie dl alphatocopherol).

The protective effect of vitamin E supplementation on exercise-induced oxidative damage was tested in 21 male volunteers. Eight hundred IU dl-alpha-tocopherol (synthetic vitamin E) significantly increased alpha-tocopherol in plasma and skeletal muscle after 48 hours [20]. Forty eight days later the subjects ran downhill on an incline treadmill to induce delayed onset muscle soreness.The results indicated that “vitamin E provides protection against exercise-induced oxidative injury” [20].This was supported by a long-term study (5 months in cyclists), which also found a protective effect of alpha-tocopherol supplementation against oxidative stress induced by strenuous exercise [21]. Even more interesting though, is the evidence that 1,200 mg (1 IU of dl, alpha tocopherol = 1 mg of vitamin E) supplementation daily reduced damage to DNA in the white blood cells of runners [22]. Leaving the world of repetitive movement to nowhere and returning to the real man’s land of heavy weights, 1,200 IUs of vitamin E was found to decrease oxidative stress in twelve recreationally weight-trained males [2].

Beta Carotene
Beta carotene (BC) is a pre-cursor to vitamin A. In one recent double-blind study, 30 mg was given to untrained subjects,while six other subjects received a placebo [23].Markers of oxidative stress were decreased in the subjects before exercise,while BC had no effect on exercise-induced oxidative stress. Most other studies examined the effects of BC combined with other antioxidants and so this will be covered in the Antioxidant Mixture section.

N-acetyl-cysteine (NAC)
NAC is an antioxidant that can increase or maintain glutathione (GSH) levels (a potent antioxidant in cells) either directly by being used to make more GSH, or indirectly by sparing GSH from being used [24]. Recent evidence indicates that 800 mg of NAC may increase the antioxidative capacity in plasma, although it did not prevent DNA damage to white blood cells after pedaling on a stationary bicycle [25].Two references on NAC have been circulating around quite a bit in magazine ads so let me address them. Since NAC is a non-specific antioxidant, researchers speculated that it may delay free-radical induced fatigue. Ten healthy men were strapped down so they could not move [26]. Force production of their ankle dorsiflexors (the muscles that pull your toes toward your shins) was then measured while these guys tried to lift an object that was never going to move (an isometric contraction) and then after electrically stimulating their muscles to contract at a variety of frequencies (involuntary contractions).Yes that’s right, in the name of science we tie people down and electrocute them.Now who says science isn’t any fun! Actually this technique is pain-free and harmless. Back to the study the investigators found that while NAC did not impact force production or fatigue at higher frequencies it did slow down the rate of fatigue at lower frequencies.These subjects received NAC via an intravenous infusion at a dose 150 mg/kg or about 11,250 mg. There were numerous side effects compared to the placebo treatments.My take on this study is that while it may provide some evidence that an antioxidant can decrease fatigue, the route of administration and the dosage make it an unlikely option for most people.When one also considers the fact that it did nothing for voluntary contractions, but did impact involuntary contractions at low frequencies, this study would seem to provide little support for NAC in healthy people.

Another study examined the effects of NAC taken three days per week in tennis players [27]. The NAC was taken in 200 mg dosages twice per day, only on the days after working out. The premise for this study was that since skeletal muscle catabolism, low plasma glutamine, and high venous glutamate levels are common among patients with cancer or human immunodeficiency virus infection, perhaps a physical exercise program causes similar changes in healthy humans. This investigative team did find that high venous glutamate levels and low plasma glutamine, arginine, and cystine levels correlated with a loss of lean body mass (the investigators actually stated lean body mass but for our purposes we will assume them to be the same). So they speculated that NAC may prevent a decline in lean body mass in individuals with low plasma glutamine levels. The control group lost some muscle and gained fat, while the NAC treated group did not lose as muscle nor gain as much fat. Their conclusion was “that cysteine indeed plays a regulatory role in the physiological control of body cell mass.” This may very well be the case, but two important things are not mentioned in the study. First, the type of placebo used is not given, so we don’t know if it is NAC per se or the fact that a sulfur and/or nitrogen containing compound was used. Second, there are no details on the diet that the subjects followed and how well regulated it was. My simple point here is that while I think NAC may have some use as an antioxidant, I don’t view it as capable of putting muscle on hard core lifters, which is what some ads have indicated.

Alpha LipoicAcid (ALA)
ALA is an antioxidant with impressive research behind it and more being published almost daily. Research on rats indicates that it is able to improve tissue antioxidant defenses and counteract oxidative stress at rest and in response to exercise [28].ALA can be recycled and so is considered to have an advantage over NAC in reducing oxidative stress [29]. Using healthy humans, 600 mg per day of ALA decreased oxidative stress and susceptibility to oxidative stress [30]. ALA has also received lots of attention for its ability to decrease blood glucose levels. So far research has shown that ALA can improve insulin sensitivity in Type 2 diabetics [31] and high dosages have been shown to induce hypoglycemia (low blood sugar) in fasting rats [32]. However, its use as agent to increase glucose uptake or stimulate increased glycogen stores in athletes has yet to be investigated, although this is certainly conceivable. There is no evidence whatsoever that it increases creatine uptake. My guess is that the anecdotal reports of creatine users increasing their gains by taking ALA are due to increased glycogen stores. This has been shown in obese rats, but unfortunately the investigators did not look at healthy rats [33]. I would also guess that the amounts healthy humans may need to stimulate glucose uptake noticeably are far greater than the amounts needed for free radical protection.

Coenzyme Q10 or Ubiquinone
Coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10) is an antioxidant involved in ATP production. Although we produce this in our bodies, some speculation has been that maybe we don’t make enough and could benefit from additional supplementation. One hundred mg per day of CoQ10 or placebo was given to ten male bicycle racers for 8 weeks [34] The racers performed graded cycle ergometry tests both before and after treatments. Supplementation with CoQ10 did not significantly effect cycling performance, maximal oxygen consumption, or markers of oxidative stress. Another study found no effects of 150 mg per day for 2 months on aerobic exercise [35]. In a third study, CoQ10 supplementation 90 mg per day significantly improved physical performance in 25 Finnish top-level cross-country skiers [36]. There was some preliminary evidence that 120 mg of CoQ10 per day increased muscle damage in humans after intense anaerobic cycling exercise, but the formal study has not been published yet, so the information must be considered cautiously [37]. As you can see, CoQ10 studies lack consistent results. Perhaps, recent evidence, which has correlated several factors with plasma CoQ10 levels can make things easier to understand [38]. These factors include serum cholesterol, triglycerides, gender, alcohol intake, age, and intensity of exercise. These factors should be considered in studies and unfortunately, most of the time they are not. This may partially explain why there may be discrepancies in the scientific literature, while different methods to test for oxidative stress and different exercise tests complete the explanation.

Selenium
Selenium is a micromineral that serves as a component of glutathione peroxidase, an important antioxidant enzyme.One hundred and eighty micrograms per day given to 12 male subjects as part of a ten-week endurance-training program increased glutathione peroxidase levels [39].No effects were found on performance. From that information we might speculate that antioxidant status was improved, but no markers of oxidative stress were measured. In similar studies, selenium was speculated to increase the efficiency of glutathione peroxidase [40] and found to have no effect on endurance training adaptations [41].

Whey Protein
We all know of whey protein for its ease of digestion and ability to increase protein synthesis, but its use as an antioxidant may surprise some.The production of glutathione, an important cellular antioxidant, depends upon how much cysteine can get inside a cell [42]. NAC can increase glutathione levels, however side effects have been associated with certain NAC treatments (see section on NAC). Certain cysteine containing molecules called glutamylcystine have been shown to increase cellular glutathione levels in vitro [43]. Whey protein containing these cysteine donors has also been shown to increase glutathione levels in mice [44]. With the premise that oxidative stress contributes to muscular fatigue [45], researchers hypothesized that supplementation with a whey-based cysteine donor (Immunocal) would therefore improve performance [46].Ten healthy men and ten healthy women were tested before and after 3 months of Immunocal or a casein placebo, both administered at 20 g per day. The results indicated that both peak power and 30-second work capacity on a cycle ergometer increased significantly in the Immunocal group, with no change in the placebo group. White blood cell glutathione levels increased significantly in the Immunocal group with no change in the placebo group.

What remains to be determined is if the beneficial properties of whey are specific to Immunocal or are applicable to all whey proteins. Thus far, most of the research on humans and whey protein has been done using Immunocal, so if other manufacturers’ whey proteins are as good, you have to wonder why they aren’t doing any work to prove it. As new evidence comes out on this, we’ll keep you posted.

Antioxidant Mixtures
Since antioxidants appear to have a beneficial effect when studied individually, a logical approach would be to combine various antioxidants to see if there is a synergistic effect on performance. As logical as it would seem that mixtures of antioxidants would decrease free radical formation and/or damage, research has offered conflicting results.

90 mg Q10 and 13.5 mg vitamin E (d-alpha-tocopheryl acetate) taken for three weeks before a marathon run had no affect on low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C) oxidation or muscular damage [47]. 100 mg CoQ10, 600 mg ascorbic acid, and 270 mg alpha-tocopherol taken over a 6-week interval had no effect on maximal oxygen uptake, muscle energy metabolism, or muscle fatigue in triathletes [48]. Six hundred mg ALA and 400 IU alpha tocopherol taken daily for two months was not any better than 600 mgALA alone in reducing oxidative stress in healthy subjects [49]. Prior treatment with ALA may have masked the effects of the ALA and vitamin E combo. In contrast to these studies, other studies using higher dosages indicate a potential role for antioxidants to reduce oxidative stress. Eight endurance athletes received 294 mg vitamin E, 1000 mg vitamin C, and 60 mg ubiquinone daily for 4 weeks before a 31-km run [50]. Antioxidant supplementation decreased the susceptibility of LDL-C and serum to oxidation, most likely due to an elevation in serum alpha-tocopherol concentration. Six hundred mg alpha-tocopherol, 1,000 mg vitamin C and 32 mg beta-carotene, or a placebo were given to professional basketball players of the First Spanish League over 32 days during a regular competition season [51].The antioxidant mixture decreased oxidative stress and prevented the development of a marginal vitamin C status in professional basketball players during the season.Twenty thousand IU beta-carotene, 400 IU vitamin E, 500 mg vitamin C, 100 micrograms selenium, and 30 mg zinc were given to Marines exposed to work at moderate altitude [52].Despite supplemental antioxidants, work in a moderate altitude cold-weather environment was accompanied by increased oxidative stress. At altitude, these guys may have benefited from even more antioxidants.

Dietary Antioxidants
The preceding sections focused on antioxidant supplementation. An article on antioxidants would be incomplete if it did not discuss the effects of dietary antioxidants. Fruits and vegetables contain far more antioxidants than you might guess. Numerous studies have shown that that the consumption of fruits and vegetables is associated with a decrease in the incidence of cancer and cardiovascular disease risk factors [53-56]. Foods such as green tea, black tea, fresh garlic, kale, spinach, Brussels sprouts, alfalfa sprouts, broccoli flowers, beets, red bell pepper, onions, corn, eggplant, cauliflower, potatoes, sweet potatoes, cabbage, leaf lettuce, string beans, and carrots have all been found to contain antioxidant activity [57]. In addition, various phytonutrients in foods such as red wine, soy protein, grapes, blueberries, prunes, strawberries, tomatoes, and raisins have all been found to contain substances that function as antioxidants and tame free radicals. While I could go on and on about how wonderful fresh fruits and vegetables are for you, hopefully you already realize this.The point that I would like to make is that many times I am asked what supplements to take when the person is following some strange diet from Mars. Why not stick with what we already know works and then after that is established, think about adding some supplements? I see no problem with altering dietary strategies throughout the training process. But people that do this the right way have this planned out ahead of time. Imagine going into the gym and not knowing what you’ll be training that day! Sounds absurd, yet this is exactly the approach people use when planning their nutritional strategy. So the take-home message is to plan out your diet and include lots of fresh fruits and vegetables – your mother was right after all.

Top Notch Antioxidant Containing Foods
Alfalfa Sprouts, Beets, Blackberries, Blueberries, Broccoli florets, Brussel Sprouts, Cauliflower, Cherries, Cranberries, Garlic, Green tea, Kale, Kiwi fruit, Onions, Oranges, Peas, Plums, Potatoes (white and sweet) – cooked, Prunes, Raisins, Raspberries, Red, Grapes, Red Bell Peppers, Red Wine, Soybeans – cooked, Spinach (raw), Strawberries,

Keep in mind that cooking can destroy certain antioxidants and that these values are for raw foods, except where noted.

Other Antioxidants
Panax ginseng G115 treatment for 3 months was recently shown to reduce exercise induced oxidative stress in the livers of rats [58]. Lutein, gingko biloba, bioflavonoids in tea and red wine, various carotenoids (besides beta carotene), lycopene, monoterpenes (from vegetables), pycnogenol, BHT, BHA, and microhydrin are examples of some of the other antioxidants that were not covered in this article. At the time I wrote this article, I was not able to find any scientific evidence of these agents reducing oxidative stress from exercise. While I think many of them may have some potential in the future, I think it is premature to start making recommendations for their use with respect to decreasing oxidative stress from exercise when we don’t have any research to guide us. Since studies are coming out every day in journals everywhere, don’t be surprised if in a few months one ore more of these agents is added to our antioxidant cocktail. Some of the above agents may still have therapeutic applications, but that is beyond the focus of this article and hence those applications will not be considered at this point.

To Supplement or Not to Supplement?
While the role of dietary antioxidants on performance has yet to be spelled out, it seems that the evidence is building up in favor of antioxidant supplementation as a preventative measure against free radical induced damage. The “weekend warrior” or occasional exerciser may be the best candidate for dietary antioxidants, since they haven’t trained enough to build up their antioxidant defense systems. On the other hand, Conrad Earnest, Ph.D., favors antioxidant supplementation for physically active individuals. “I don’t believe there is a set formula, but rather I believe that the supplement need is directly related to training volume and total energy output.The more you train, the more you likely need (within reason).The less you train, the less you need. It is all related to total system stress. I also think that there might be a case for the timing of certain antioxidants where one is prophylactic and the other is restorative.”

Making Sense of It All
The focus in this article was on trying to find an antioxidant formula that would work for decreasing oxidative stress from exercise. The significance of such a formula would have implications for health as well as exercise performance. The information presented is far from a complete review of the scientific literature. For further information I offer some book suggestions at the end of this article.

When working with athletes, non-athletes, and diseased populations, the questions always seem to come down to what exactly should be taken to decrease oxidative stress? In an ideal world, we would simply run some tests on you and tell you exactly what antioxidants are low and therefore be able to precisely tell you what you need to take. Unfortunately there is tremendous discrepancy over which markers are best for determining antioxidant status. In addition, more practical issues are where to go to get this work done and the costs involved.There are very few places with skilled personnel to perform and interpret these types of tests and in situations where you can get some work done, you’ll need some serious cash.The following guidelines are not intended for people with diseases, nor are they intended to take the place of your personal practitioner’s advice. For healthy athletes in sports with a seasonal schedule, in the offseason and the pre-season the primary goal is to eat five or more pieces of fruits and vegetables every day. This is important because it will load up your system with antioxidant nutrients. When in-season comes around and you travel on the road, your diet will probably resemble a McDonald’s menu, so you’ll need the foundation that a healthier diet provides. Bodybuilders, powerlifters, weightlifters, and other athletes not involved in a traveling situation have no excuse. Plan to eat or plan to fail, it’s a simple choice, so make the right one. When following a decent diet, I would encourage the following antioxidant strategy:

With breakfast or first meal of the day:
250-500 mg vitamin C
400 IUs vitamin E mixed tocopherols and tocotrienols
300 mg ALA
30-45 mg CoQ10

The same mixture is taken again with the last meal of the day. Notice that there is no recommendation for beta carotene,NAC, or selenium.A sweet potato, some carrots, and other orange/yellow foods will supply all the beta carotene and other carotenoids you need. If you are eating a decent diet then you are already getting this, so supplementing with it is unnecessary. If you are taking in at least one scoop of whey protein (especially Immunocal), then you don’t need any NAC. Selenium and most minerals are easy to attain when eating nuts, vegetables, fish, and dairy products.An ounce of Brazil nuts offers 840 micrograms of selenium! It may not all be bioavailable, but it is still a very healthy dose. Fish also offers significant amounts of selenium.

When an athlete is traveling over the road, experiencing a very stressful phase of training, (sometimes called over-reaching or over-shooting - a short planned period of overtraining), eating a terrible diet, or sick (ie a cold), oxidative stress will be much greater. A more appropriate strategy would utilize higher dosages of antioxidants. This is best viewed as a short-term strategy (3-4 months) and not a strategy one follows year round.

Take these antioxidants three times, spaced evenly throughout the day:
500-1000 mg vitamin C
300-400 IUs vitamin E mixed tocopherols and tocotrienols
300 mg ALA
10-15 mg beta carotene
30-45 mg CoQ10
30 micrograms selenium
1-2 scoops of whey protein

If you work out or have practice in the morning, try to take the first antioxidant mixture prior to your activity. It may help to cut down on the stress of exercise, although the evidence on this is fairly weak at this point.A consistent intake of antioxidants, whether from diet or supplementation, is important in preventing oxidative stress. Missing meals or skipping supplements will not help you achieve our goals. The simple strategy I presented above has been used on myself and with many of the people I work with.

Women report a decrease in delayed onset muscle soreness, especially if the above supplements are taken with zinc. In my experience, men seem slower to respond than women, but do report less muscle aches and pains, a decrease in the number of times they get sick, and claim to recover faster and fatigue less. I realize, as most of you may, that this feedback is very subjective. Unfortunately, that is all we have right now until doctors and labs get sophisticated enough to help us out more objectively.However, my goal with my clients is to develop effective strategies that work, and when things don’t work, I get late night phone calls with lots of cursing me and emails with the same. So far this hasn’t been happening, so either I have a super-duper placebo effect going on, or just maybe I’m on to something.

For Further Reading
Books which readers may want to consider purchasing for further reading are The Antioxidant Revolution by Kenneth Cooper, MD [59] and Antioxidants and Exercise by Jan Karlsson, PhD [60]. Dr Cooper is widely recognized as the father of aerobics based upon his 1968 book Aerobics, which started the fitness craze [61]. Get his book if you don’t have a science background and want things explained in lay terms. Karlsson is a former professor in sport and exercise physiology from the internationally recognized Karolinska Institute in Stockholm, Sweden. Get his book if you want more technical details or want to have a reference text in your library.Antioxidant Food Supplements in Human Health is another book for the scientifically minded edited by Lester Packer, Midori Hiramatsu, and Toshikazu Yoshikawa [62]. It covers far more nutrients than the other two books, so if you just want to buy one book, this may be it.
by Thomas Incledon, PhD(c), RD, LD/LN, RPT,NSCA-CPT, CSCS
thomasincledon.com
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Old 10-12-2009, 08:55 AM   #2
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