Background: Betalain-rich concentrate (BRC) improved the performance of competitive male runners and triathletes in randomized and controlled studies. In this pilot study, we tested the effect of a single dose of BRC in sedentary individuals on exercise performance. Methods and findings: Eleven non-athletic sedentary but otherwise healthy subjects completed this double-blind crossover (placebo and BRC) randomized study. 150 minutes after supplementation, each subject initiated exercise on stationary steppers and were instructed to “try your best” for 30 minutes. Results indicate that subjects had a significantly higher number of steps after a single dose of BRC (1699.73 ± 400.89 steps) when compared to placebo (1496.45 ± 357.64), (P=0.0186). The total count of burned calories was higher in the BRC group when compared to the placebo group (p=0.014). Blood lactate was higher in both experimental groups after 30 minutes of exercise, with no significant differences between the two groups. Conclusion: Our results suggest that BRC improves exercise performance in sedentary individuals.
Tania Reyes-Izquierdo, Ruby Argumedo, Melissa MC Afram, Boris Nemzer and Zbigniew Pietrzkowski
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