Definition: "An ergogenic aid is any substance or phenomenon that enhances performance "
The modified ginseng supplement GINST15, Compound K and muscles
The new ginseng preparation GINST15, which contains a modified ginsenoside, reduces feelings of exertion and muscle pain during and after intensive training, and maintains the functional capacity of exhausted muscles. Researchers at Ohio State University report this in the Journal of Sports Science and Medicine. We, the diligent compilers of this website, have a little trouble with this study. But GINST15, we find that interesting stuff.
On one occasion, the subjects took a placebo in the 14 days preceding the tests. On the two other occasions, they took 160 or 960 milligrams of GINST15 each day.
What is GINST15?
The main active ingredient in GINST15 is 20-beta-beta-D-glucopyranosyl-20-(S)-protopanaxadiol or Compound K. Compound K is a stripped version of the ginsenosides in ginseng extracts.
In the blood of ginseng users, Compound K is the main ginseng metabolite. According to recent studies, this substance causes the positive effects of ginseng. That's why Ilhwa designed a production process in which enzymes convert ginsenosides into Compound K. This substance is the main ingredient in the GINST15 supplements on the market.
All subjects trained in the same way during the experiment: four times a week, with a schedule in which they worked on the most important muscle groups twice a week with basic exercises.
When the subjects used the high dose of GINST15, they developed more power [W] during the ballistic jumps than when they used a placebo or a low dose of GINST15. However, the difference was not statistically significant [figure bottom left].
The researchers then did a trick that supplement researchers use too often: they divided their subjects into 13 responders and 6 non-responders. In science that is not very neat. The researchers will not use their job over it, but will probably be punished for this in the afterlife.
Is that really true?
The authors of this study will go into scientific purgatory instead. No lab for them. They will spend the rest of eternity in an attic room in their parental home, with a cheap microscope from Walmart. And on their desk is the last issue of Scientific American. They had recently written an angry letter to the editors, complaining about the consistently wrongly written name of a bacterium, in article about the urging need to develop new antibiotics. But that letter was not printed.
"The evolution of responders and nonresponders draws into question the seemingly-mixed literature base on the ergogenic effects of ginseng, suggesting the potential of the supplement may be hidden in individual response."