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Open AccessArticle

Effect of Beetroot Juice Supplementation on Aerobic Response during Swimming

The Department of Medical Sciences, Sports Physiology Lab, University of Cagliari, Via Porcell 4, 09124 Cagliari, Italy
Regional School of Sport of Sardinia, Italian Olympic Committee, Cagliari, Italy
Tunisian Research Laboratory "Sports Performance Optimisation" National Centre of Medicine and Science in Sports (CNMSS), Tunis, Tunisia
Faculty of Medicine and Surgery, University of Tor Vergata Rome, Rome, Italy
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Nutrients 2014, 6(2), 605-615;
Received: 29 November 2013 / Revised: 9 January 2014 / Accepted: 17 January 2014 / Published: 29 January 2014
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sport and Performance Nutrition)
The beneficial effects of beetroot juice supplementation (BJS) have been tested during cycling, walking, and running. The purpose of the present study was to investigate whether BJS can also improve performance in swimmers. Fourteen moderately trained male master swimmers were recruited and underwent two incremental swimming tests randomly assigned in a pool during which workload, oxygen uptake (VO2), carbon dioxide production (VCO2), pulmonary ventilation (VE), and aerobic energy cost (AEC) of swimming were measured. One was a control swimming test (CSW) and the other a swimming test after six days of BJS (0.5l/day organic beetroot juice containing about 5.5 mmol of NO3). Results show that workload at anaerobic threshold was significantly increased by BJS as compared to the CSW test (6.3 ± 1 and 6.7 ± 1.1 kg during the CSW and the BJS test respectively). Moreover, AEC was significantly reduced during the BJS test (1.9 ± 0.5 during the SW test vs. 1.7 ± 0.3 kcal·kg−1·h−1 during the BJS test). The other variables lacked a statistically significant effect with BJS. The present investigation provides evidence that BJS positively affects performance of swimmers as it reduces the AEC and increases the workload at anaerobic threshold. View Full-Text
Keywords: exercise; nitric oxide; aerobic energy cost; anaerobic threshold; oxygen uptak exercise; nitric oxide; aerobic energy cost; anaerobic threshold; oxygen uptak
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Pinna, M.; Roberto, S.; Milia, R.; Marongiu, E.; Olla, S.; Loi, A.; Migliaccio, G.M.; Padulo, J.; Orlandi, C.; Tocco, F.; Concu, A.; Crisafulli, A. Effect of Beetroot Juice Supplementation on Aerobic Response during Swimming. Nutrients 2014, 6, 605-615.

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