Friday, 25 November 2016

Beetroot juice improves exercise endurance, good for COPD patients

Beetroot juice.
A study on the drinking of beetroot juice, at least 1 1/2 hrs  before exercise  has good benefits  on physical body function and  could improve the exercise capacity of COPD - chronic obstructive pulmonary disease patients because of the presence of nitrates. 

Patients with COPD disease find it to breathe comfortably and  tend to become sedentary or show gradual decline in the physical function or fitness activities because they face the prospect of experiencing  shortness of breath with exertion when climbing  steps or stairways and  hiking uphill trails. On many an occasion, such physical tasks leave them gasping and over panting. Such scary happenings put a damper on their future physical activities. Reason: fear.

It was the first study - 2010  ever undertaken by Wake Forest researchers who showed the link  between consumption of nitrate-rich beet juice and increased blood flow to the brain. Patients  who drank beetroot juice long before exercise were able to exercise longer time, and had reduced exercise diastolic and resting systolic blood pressures.It is a good news for COPD patients.

The study involved  15 COPD patients, who were subjected to gradual to rigorous  exercise regimen and pulmonary function tests and lung volume tests on a few visits, as predetermined. The aim of these exercise tests was to exhaust the patient in a four to ten minutes time span.  Roughly one and half hours before exercise, some were given beetroot juice, while others Prune juice - a sort of  placebo drink which does not have nitrates. The exercise tests were designed to exhaust the patient in a four to ten minutes period.
The positive results that emerged will  motivate COPD patients to continue to be physically active and improve their health.

So, COPD patients need not worry about climbing steps or hiking hilly terrains and consequent exhaustion and gasping. With a glass of beetroot juice, you can it  do it with less fatigue and panting.

Journal Reference:
 Michael J. Berry, Nicholas W. Justus, Jordan I. Hauser, Ashlee H. Case, Christine C. Helms, Swati Basu, Zachary Rogers, Marc T. Lewis, Gary D. Miller. Dietary nitrate supplementation improves exercise performance and decreases blood pressure in COPD patients. Nitric Oxide, 2014; DOI: 10.1016/j.niox.2014.10.007