Beetroot Juice and Excercise

by Heather Duchan | September 22nd, 2011 | Eating Tips

Since Gatorade was first marketed as a drink for fitness buffs and athletes, there have been loads of other drinks with the same label attached to them over the years. From cherry juice to protein shakes, there are numerous drinks being touted as a performance tool for fitness-related activities. Recent research has revealed a new drink that may be popping up in grocery stores, gyms, and athletic events soon.

Studies, conducted last year by Exeter University, revealed that cyclists were able to ride up to 20 percent longer after drinking a half-liter of beetroot juice a few hours before setting out on a ride. These cyclists were examined under a scanner, and researchers found that the beetroot juice made it possible for them to use less oxygen while exercising.

Another study recently published by the research journal, “Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise,” showed similar results. Nine competitive cyclists were studied during two cycling competitions. For the first competition, the cyclists drank beetroot juice. For the second, the same men drank beetroot juice as well, but this second batch of beetroot juice had nitrate purposely removed from it by researchers. The results showed that the first batch of nitrate-rich beetroot juice provided higher endurance and output for the same amount of effort.

Although researchers are still studying the effects of beetroot juice, these early studies present a new drink that can be beneficial to both serious athletes, and to those with more low-key fitness pursuits. Although this drink will probably not enhance performance in any significant way, it can help with endurance, making it possible for longer periods of training. This can lead to faster results, whether you’re just trying to get a little more fit or wanting to get ready for a competitive event in a hurry.

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All health and fitness information is provided for educational purposes. Please consult with your physician before beginning any exercise regimen.