Tag Archive: Exercise
It’s always a challenge to take a single, isolated nutrient and try to prove a health benefit within a research study. Unlike drugs, which mostly have a clear mode of action on their own, nutrients generally usually work synergistically with other nutrients and lifestyle factors to generate health benefits. So when a meta-analysis (review of multiple studies) of one vitamin all show a similar clinical outcome, it is a significant finding and offers some clarity on the use of a nutrient in isolation as well as in combination with others.
A 2014 meta-analysis of nine studies on vitamin C for lung health (specifically exercise-induced bronchoconstriction or EIB) showed a positive correlation between vitamin C and lung health. The studies focused on EIB, a specific condition when the airways narrow during vigorous exercise, and are more common when the air temperature is low. It’s a relatively common event in people with asthma and endurance athletes.
The test to determine exercise-induced bronchoconstriction evaluates “forced expiratory volume” (FEV1), measuring the amount of air the lungs can exhale. When the FEV1 is decreased by 10% or more, it is determined to qualify as bronchoconstriction. In this review it was found that vitamin C doses as modest as 200 mg daily (and up to 1,500 mg) consistently reduced the decline of FEV1 and supported healthy breathing. The scientists reviewing the studies concluded that vitamin C supplementation is worth exploring for physically-active people to support healthy lung function in situations where they have EIB or for general lung improvement – albeit that this benefit has yet to be established.
 Hemila H. The effect of vitamin C on bronchoconstriction and respiratory symptoms caused by exercise: a review and statistical analysis. Allergy, Asthma & Clinical Immunology 2014, 10:58 View Full Paper
Athletes, particularly those at the top of their profession appear to be are big winners when it comes to their gut microflora. A recent paper suggests that exercise has a direct effect on microbial composition and related gastrointestinal health. The article ‘Exercise and associated dietary extremes impact on gut microbial diversity’ was published in the international journal GUT. Read the rest of this entry »