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Nutrients 2014, 6(5), 1874-1885; doi:10.3390/nu6051874

Red Ginseng Treatment for Two Weeks Promotes Fat Metabolism during Exercise in Mice

1 Laboratory of Exercise Nutrition, Department of Physical Education, Konkuk University, Seoul 120, Neungdong-ro, Gwangin-gu, Seoul 143-701, Korea 2 Department of Physical Education, Keimyung University, Daegu 704-701, Korea 3 Department of Medicine, Konkuk University, Chungju 380-701, Korea 4 Department of Food Science and Biotechnology of Animal Resources, Konkuk University, Seoul 143-701, Korea
* Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 14 March 2014 / Revised: 16 April 2014 / Accepted: 28 April 2014 / Published: 5 May 2014
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sport and Performance Nutrition)
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PURPOSE: Red ginseng (RG) has been reported to improve the blood and organ lipid profile when combined with exercise. However, the effect of RG on energy metabolism during exercise is poorly understood. Therefore, this study was designed to investigate whether RG treatment alters fat utilization during exercise; METHODS: We used seven-week-old ICR mice (n = 42). RG (1 g/kg) was administered orally daily during two weeks of endurance training. All mice were randomized into two groups: training only group (CON group) and training with RG group (RG group). Endurance training consisted of 20~25 m/min on a slope of 8° for one hour five times a week. After a two-week experimental period, we measured substrate utilization during exercise at the same intensity and duration of training using a respiratory calorimetry chamber. Mice were dissected for glycogen measurement of muscles and liver before, immediately after, and one hour after the exercise; RESULT: Fat oxidation during the initial 20 min of the one-hour exercise significantly increased in the RG group compared to the CON group. In addition, the liver glycogen stores significantly decreased immediately after the one-hour exercise compared to at rest in the RG group, but did not differ between immediately after the one-hour exercise and at rest in the RG group. The glycogen concentration in white and red gastrocnemius muscle did not differ between the groups immediately after the one-hour exercise; CONCLUSIONS: These results suggest that RG treatment for two weeks promotes fat oxidation and a glycogen-sparing effect during exercise. This might lead to a delay in peripheral fatigue during endurance exercise performance.
Keywords: red ginseng; endurance training; carbohydrate oxidation; fat oxidation; glycogen red ginseng; endurance training; carbohydrate oxidation; fat oxidation; glycogen
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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Hwang, H.; Kim, J.; Park, J.; Yun, H.; Cheon, W.-K.; Kim, B.; Lee, C.-H.; Suh, H.; Lim, K. Red Ginseng Treatment for Two Weeks Promotes Fat Metabolism during Exercise in Mice. Nutrients 2014, 6, 1874-1885.

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