Chlorella supplement boosts maximal oxygen uptake
Endurance athletes and sprinters may be able to increase their oxygen uptake capacity by taking a couple of grams of Chlorella daily. A human study that sports scientists at Ryutsu Keizai University in Japan published in the Journal of Clinical Biochemistry and Nutrition suggests this.
Chlorella and endurance capacity
If you give runners spirulina supplements their endurance capacity increases. [More] Supplementation with Chlorella pyrenoidosa may well have the same effect, Japanese researchers at the Sun Chlorella Corporation concluded in 2011 after doing experiments with mice in which the animals' endurance capacity doubled. [Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2011 Jan 7;404(1):121-6.]
Indeed, mice are not men. That's why sports scientists at Ryutsu Keizai University in Japan decided to do a human study. They gave 10 reasonably active students – 7 men and 3 women – 15 Chlorella tablets at breakfast and the same amount at the evening meal for a period of 4 weeks. In total the students consumed just less than 6 g chlorella daily.
The Japanese then repeated the procedure but gave the students a placebo.
The researchers used Sun Chlorella A. The manufacturer, Sun Chlorella Corporation, sponsored the study.
At the end of the 4 weeks the researchers got their subjects to cycle as fast as they could and measured among other things their work rate. It appeared that Chlorella supplementation increased that capacity, but the effects were not statistically significant.
The researchers don't know how Chlorella increases the body's peak oxygen uptake.In their considerations they refer again to the 2011 animal study done by researchers at the Sun Chlorella Corporation. [Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2011 Jan 7;404(1):121-6.] In this study Chlorella supplementation altered the activity of genes involved in metabolic processes.
"Immune response and oxidoreductase activity-associated genes were included in the downregulated genes with Chlorella supplementation and angiogenesis-related genes were included in the upregulated genes", the Japanese wrote.
"Although it is currently unknown which genes were implicated in an increase in maximal swimming time in mice on a diet including Chlorella powder, these genes may provide keys to elucidate the mechanisms underlying an improvement of aerobic endurance capacity with Chlorella supplementation."
J Clin Biochem Nutr. 2014 Sep;55(2):143-6.
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