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Open AccessArticle

Blackcurrant Alters Physiological Responses and Femoral Artery Diameter during Sustained Isometric Contraction

1
Department of Sport & Exercise Sciences, University of Chichester, College Lane, Chichester PO19 6PE, UK
2
Institute of Sport and Exercise Science, University of Worcester, Henwick Grove, Worcester WR2 6AJ, UK
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Nutrients 2017, 9(6), 556; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu9060556
Received: 26 April 2017 / Revised: 23 May 2017 / Accepted: 26 May 2017 / Published: 29 May 2017
Blackcurrant is rich in anthocyanins that may affect exercise-induced physiological responses. We examined tissue oxygen saturation, muscle activity, cardiovascular responses and femoral artery diameter during a submaximal sustained isometric contraction. In a randomised, double-blind, crossover design, healthy men (n = 13, age: 25 ± 4 years, BMI: 25 ± 3 kg·m−2, mean ± SD) ingested New Zealand blackcurrant (NZBC) extract (600 mg∙day−1 CurraNZ™) or placebo (PL) for 7-days separated by 14-days washout. Participants produced isometric maximal voluntary contractions (iMVC) and a 120-s 30%iMVC of the quadriceps with electromyography (EMG), near-infrared spectroscopy, hemodynamic and ultrasound recordings. There was no effect of NZBC extract on iMVC (NZBC: 654 ± 73, PL: 650 ± 78 N). During the 30%iMVC with NZBC extract, total peripheral resistance, systolic, diastolic, and mean arterial pressure were lower with increased cardiac output and stroke volume. With NZBC extract, EMG root mean square of the vastus medialis and muscle oxygen saturation were lower with higher total haemoglobin. During the 30%iMVC, femoral artery diameter was increased with NZBC extract at 30 (6.9%), 60 (8.2%), 90 (7.7%) and 120 s (6.0%). Intake of NZBC extract for 7-days altered cardiovascular responses, muscle oxygen saturation, muscle activity and femoral artery diameter during a 120-s 30%iMVC of the quadriceps. The present study provides insight into the potential mechanisms for enhanced exercise performance with intake of blackcurrant. View Full-Text
Keywords: cardiovascular function; anthocyanins; blood flow; isometric contraction; New Zealand blackcurrant; electromyography; ultrasound; exercise cardiovascular function; anthocyanins; blood flow; isometric contraction; New Zealand blackcurrant; electromyography; ultrasound; exercise
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Cook, M.D.; Myers, S.D.; Gault, M.L.; Willems, M.E.T. Blackcurrant Alters Physiological Responses and Femoral Artery Diameter during Sustained Isometric Contraction. Nutrients 2017, 9, 556.

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