What are the Effects of a Combined Protein & Antioxidant Supplement on Recovery of Muscle Function & Soreness following Eccentric Exercise?

Research Paper Title

Effects of a combined protein and antioxidant supplement on recovery of muscle function and soreness following eccentric exercise

Background

An acute bout of eccentric contractions (ECC) cause muscle fiber damage, inflammation, impaired muscle function (MF) and muscle soreness (MS). Individually, protein (PRO) and antioxidant (AO) supplementation may improve some aspects of recovery from ECC, though have yet to be combined. The researchers sought to determine if combined PRO and AO supplementation (PRO + AO) improves MS and MF following damaging ECC over PRO alone.

Methods

Sixty sedentary college-aged males participated in a randomised, single–blind, parallel design study of peak isometric torque (PIMT), peak isokinetic torque (PIKT), thigh circumference (TC), and muscle soreness (MS) of knee extensor muscles measured at baseline, immediately after and 1, 2, 6, and 24 h after completion of 100 maximal ECC. Immediately, 6 h, and 22 h post-ECC, participants consumed either:

  • Carbohydrate control (CHO; n = 14);
  • PRO (n = 16); or
  • PRO + AO (n = 17).

Results

At baseline MS, TC, MF, macro- and micro-nutrient intakes, and total work during the ECC were not different between groups (p > 0.05). PIMT and PIKT (both −25%∆), TC (~1%∆) and MS (~35%∆) all changed with time (p < 0.05).

The researchers observed a group by time effect for PIKT (PRO + AO and PRO > CHO, p < 0.05). At 24 h post ECC, there was a trend towards improved relative PIMT (~11%) and PIKT (~17%) for PRO + AO (~17%) and PRO (~11%) compared to CHO.

An interaction indicated PRO + AO had lowest MS over time (PRO + AO > PRO & CHO, p < 0.05).

Conclusions

The results suggest PRO facilitates recovery of muscle function within 24 h following ECC, and addition of AO ameliorates MS more than PRO or CHO alone.

Reference

Ives, S.J., Bloom, S., Matias, A., Morrow, N., Martins, N., Roh, Y., Ebenstein, D., O’Brien, G., Escudero, D., Brito, K., Glickman, L., Connelly, S. & Arciero, P.J. (2017) Effects of a combined protein and antioxidant supplement on recovery of muscle function and soreness following eccentric exercise. Journal of the International Society of Sports Medicine. 14: 21. Published online 2017 Jul 3. doi: 10.1186/s12970-017-0179-6.

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