Scientists from Anglia Ruskin University and elsewhere found that olive oil may boost exercise performance.
Researchers are interested in natural compounds called phenolic compounds and their potential health benefits, as well as how they may help with exercise.
This study looked at how a supplement made from organic and biodynamic olive fruit water called OliPhenolia® (OliP) affected exercise performance and recovery.
OliP is rich in a compound called hydroxytyrosol (HT), which is thought to be good for the body.
The study involved 29 people who were moderately active and around 42 years old.
They were asked to take either OliP or a placebo (a fake supplement) twice a day for 16 days. The researchers wanted to see if taking OliP would affect their performance in exercise tests.
Before and after the 16-day period, the participants did two types of exercise tests. One was a submaximal test, which means they exercised at a lower intensity for a longer time.
The other was a maximal test, where they exercised as hard as they could until they couldn’t continue.
The researchers found that taking OliP improved some aspects of exercise performance.
Participants who took OliP were able to exercise at a higher intensity before feeling tired, and their running efficiency was better at a certain level of exertion. They also felt less tired when exercising at a high intensity.
After the exercise tests, the researchers measured how quickly the participants recovered. They found that those who took OliP recovered more quickly than those who took the placebo.
Although taking OliP didn’t make a significant difference in the maximal exercise test, the researchers think that the phenolic compounds in OliP, including HT, may help people who are moderately active improve their exercise performance and recover more quickly.
The researchers believe that more studies are needed to determine if taking OliP in different amounts or for a longer period of time, combined with exercise training, could lead to even greater improvements in exercise performance and recovery for people who are moderately active, or even improve athletic performance.
The research was published in Nutrients and was conducted by Justin Roberts et al.
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