This is just quick research note without even an attempt at any humor.
But don't worry, there is also a "100% research-free" item just below, with no useful information in it at all!
So for your recommended daily allowance of Cranky Fitness silliness, simply take both these together with a large glass of water, and you should get all the benefits of a "normal" post! Warning: do not attempt to drive your car or operate heavy machinery while under the influence of Cranky Fitness. May cause extreme drowsiness, skepticism, stomach irritation, and/or high blood pressure.
Anyway, so did anyone see the WTF headline in the New York Times health section yesterday: Vitamins Found to Curb Exercise Benefits?
More specifically, taking antioxidants (in this case vitamins C and E) seemed to interfere with the benefits you get from exercise. These pills apparently eliminate the improved insulin sensitivity you're supposed to get from doing the huffy-puff stuffy. And the supplements also seemed to mess with the body’s natural defenses to oxidative damage.
“If you exercise to promote health, you shouldn’t take large amounts of antioxidants,” one of the study's authors, Michael Ristow, said. The effect of vitamins on exercise and glucose metabolism “is really quite significant.”
Fortunately, the study author said this is just the case with antioxidant supplements, and does not mean you have to choose between your cauliflower and your cardio. You can still get antioxidants from fruits and vegetables because "the many other substances they contain presumably outweigh any negative effect."
A write-up of the vitamin and exercise study over at WebMd offers a bit more helpful detail: half of the men took 500 milligrams of vitamin C twice daily and 400 international units of vitamin E daily. The other guys got placebo pills.
Of course a spokesman for the supplement industry cautioned that one shouldn't take any one study too seriously!
Which is true, but also kinda funny, because they never seem to emphasize that point when it's a study saying that some supplement does some fantastic thing for your health.
While I don't take specific C or E supplements, this does make me wonder about my daily low-dose, cover-all-the-bases multi-vitamin. I still haven't decided what to do. Give it up? Just take it less often? Wait for another study to clarify if this effect is even real?
What about you folks, would this study result change anything you're doing or have you already ditched the pills?