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Beetroot juice outperforms nitrate supplements in enhancing exercise performance

Best Beetroot Juice:

Best Beetroot Juice: In a review article recently published in the journal leader in nutritionResearchers in the United States synthesized what is known about the beneficial effects of beetroot juice (BRJ) in terms of exercise capacity and physical function.

They concluded that the benefits of BRJ outweigh those of dietary nitrate (NO)3,) and nitrate salts (NIT) because of the variety of phytonutrients they contain that promote training and recovery results.

ImageForNews 772486 17085745389046190 - Beetroot juice outperforms nitrate supplements in enhancing exercise performanceStudy: Beetroot Juice Supplementation and Exercise Performance: Is There More to the Story Than Nitrates?

Dietary nitrates are known to have exercise-related benefits

Nitrate supplementation may reduce the oxygen cost of aerobic exercise, thereby affecting muscle contractility, vascular function, exercise performance and economy, adaptation to training, and muscle damage and pain.

These benefits are thought to occur through increased production of nitric oxide in the body, which lowers blood pressure and regulates other physiological responses. Leafy vegetables and beetroot are rich sources of NO3,And the effects of BRJ are often consider equal if not equivalent to NIT.3, The dosages are comparable.

BRJ, apart from being rich in nitrates, also contains potassium, magnesium, folic acid, ascorbic acid and biotics. Polyphenolic compounds found in BRJ include betanin and other betacyanins.

since no3,-While free BRJ does not significantly modify oxygen uptake, performance during exercise, or muscle metabolism, other biologically active components of BRJ may act independently in conjunction with nitrate.

Comparing NIT to BRJ for exercise-related outcomes

Early studies reported the superiority of BRJ over NIT, finding that there were no significant differences during moderate intensity exercise; However, for high-intensity exercise, oxygen uptake by BRJ was significantly reduce.

This may be because BRJ improves mitochondrial efficiency, thereby increasing the economy of exercise. A recent study validated these findings and additionally found that BRJ delayed the time before fatigue onset during high-intensity workouts.

From these observations, scientists concluded that BRJ may be more effective in reducing oxygen costs during intense aerobic exercise, thereby enhancing performance results.

An important limitation of these studies is that it is difficult to convey to participants in clinical trials a clear distinction between NIT and BRJ.

Mechanisms through which BRJ may have greater exercise benefits

Researchers have speculated that other components in BRJ, such as polyphenols, may increase NO.3, Absorption compared to nits. However, plasma NO3, no more2, Levels appear to be similar between two to four hours after taking NIT and BRJ.

This, combined with the fact that at least one study did not measure NO3, The levels in BRJ supplements, which often vary significantly, mean that observed differences may be due to unobserved differences in nitrate bioavailability.

Specifically, one study comparing the effects of BRJ and NIT on eccentric exercise recovery found no difference in muscle damage after repeated drop jumps, but did find that BRJ significantly reduced muscle soreness. done. This may be due to its anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties.

Another study looking at sprint interval training indicated that BRJ may reduce the physical stress involved in training and thus allow for more intense training and better training-related results. However, the generalizability of these findings is limit by a small sample size, meaning that high-performing outliers may significantly influence the results.


There seem to be indications that BRJ may be superior to NIT when it comes to some exercise-related outcomes.

if no3, Whether the levels between the two are actually equal has not always been establish, meaning that other components of BRJ, such as polyphenols, are acting in synergy with nitrate to enhance exercise results. However, more research is need to identify which components, if any, are driving these effects and how they work.

Additionally, nitrate bioavailability appears to be similar between BRJ and NIT, as seen from their effects on blood pressure, so it is possible that these components do not increase bioavailability but rather prolong it or cause cellular damage. Let’s reduce.

The authors suggest that future trials comparing NIT and BRJ should directly measure NO3, Levels in both, adjusting for variability in nitrate levels. They should also tell participants about the differences between the two treatments using thickening agents, food coloring, and artificial flavors.

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July 2024
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