Beet juice has been used among athletes in the past few years for its ability to boost endurance. A study published in the Journal of Applied Psysiology, which was written by Andy Jones, examined the dose-response influence on three different serving sizes of beet juice and how exercise outcomes and health were affected.
Beets are an excellent source of inorganic nitrate. When an individual takes beet juice, nitrate is converted into nitric oxide. As a result, it influences blood flow, neurotransmission, muscle contraction, and more. The study found that the levels of nitrate in an individual’s blood change after he or she takes larger doses of beet juice, so the more the better. After ingestion, peak levels occur about two to three hours and will reach baseline about 12 hours later.
How does this boost in inorganic nitrate affect health? An increase in nitrate caused systolic blood pressure to plummet by 5, 9, and 10 mmHg for three doses, which were smallest to largest. The drop in diastolic blood pressure was decreased, but there was a smaller drop of 3 and 4 mmHg. Furthermore, in 2010, Wake Forest University published a study that involved elderly patients with dementia. The study alternated the days the participants were given beet juice and the days they received a low nitrate diet. The study found that brain scans, which were taken on the days they were given beet juice, showed an increased in blood flow. There isn’t much talk about beet juice and brain function, but there is significant evidence that it can be beneficial for the brain.
Furthermore, those who take beet juice will require less energy or oxygen to maintain moderate exercise for extended periods. For the best results, higher doses were recommended, which caused a decrease of oxygen consumption by nearly 3%. According to the study, peak nitrate levels will occur about 2.5 hours after ingestion.
So what doses are recommended to boost endurance and health? During the study, researchers used a concentrated beet juice produce. The study found the concentrated form may produce the best results without causing digestive problems. The doses used in the study were given in 70 mL servings, which was equivalent to 300 mL of regular beet juice.
The side effects of beetroot supplements is it may give urine a slightly reddish color, which is completely harmless. Long-term use of beet root juice is completely safe, so it can be a great supplement for those looking to lower blood pressure or increase athletic ability in terms of endurance.