Applied Bodybuilding Research: The Latest News - 12-02-03!

Find out all about the new green tea research, all about creatine and bloating, what diabetic athletes need to know, new osteological info, if you need multi-vitamins and if your body images matters...
Note: Do YOU know of new studies that have come out recently & we don't have them? Send me an E-mail!

Green Tea…

Green tea is a beverage enjoyed the world over for its great, mild, taste, and its health effects.

Many consume green tea because it is a rich source of anti-oxidants 1,2,3,4, is anti-carcinogenic5,6 may help to prevent cancer 7,8,9, can be used in the treatment of AIDS and HIV10, and can even help you to lose weight! 11, 12, 13

New research has shown that it may also help you live longer!

A study by Asian researchers has demonstrated that green tea helps to extend life as a resulting from its ability to create the optimal internal environment14, thereby discouraging cell death and thus extending the life of the body.

Drink green tea, its good for you!

SOURCE: Ann N Y Acad Sci. 2001 Apr;928:274-80.

Creatine & Bloating…

Anyone who has been involved in fitness or bodybuilding for any length of time knows of creatine monohydrate and its ergogenic capabilities.

Unfortunately, many are also familiar with the famous "creatine bloat." Simply, the bloat occurs because of creatines ability to draw water into the muscle. When too much water is drawn, not all of it may be absorbed, thus leaving some water hanging outside of the cell that can lead to the appearance of bloating.

A question of interest to scientists and advanced bodybuilders has been: will the bloat be more or less pronounced if creatine is used in conjunction with another substance?

Recent research has examined this question, by testing the effects of a creatine-magnesium combination in a random-assignment, blinded study.

Researchers found that when creatine and magnesium were supplemented together, cellular water levels increased, as did extra-cellular water levels - water left sitting outside of the cell.

Although taking your creatine with magnesium leads to greater gains, at pre-contest time one should stick to creatine alone to avoid water retention.

SOURCE: Metabolism. 2003 Sep;52(9):1136-40.

Diabetic Athletes Take Note…

Diabetes is a disease that affects millions of people around the world. Many athletes are also affected and must struggle daily to manage their conditions.

Recent research has shown the importance of exercise for diabetic persons and why, sometimes, exercise can mean the difference between living as a diabetic, or dying as a result of being one.

A study conducted at the University of Pittsburgh has demonstrated that exercise combined with weight loss enhances postabsorptive fat oxidation, and this can lead to an increase in improving insulin sensitivity.

For diabetic athletes, this means that exercising may potentate the effects of insulin, thus allowing them to use less insulin or, in the best of cases, perhaps allowing for the cessation of injections entirely.

SOURCE: Diabetes. 2003 Sep;52(9):2191-7.

Osteological Update…

For years experts have been debating the efficacy of training on bone and bone structures. The question has always been: Is there any evidence to suggest that physical activity improves both the quantity and quality of bone in humans?

In part, this line of questioning results from the misguided notion that physical exercise is muscle-oriented.

New research demonstrates that physical activity does improve bone formation and overall bone health.

There should be no confusion: physical activity trains muscles, joints, the central nervous system, and bone. Exercise is a holistic approach to health care.

SOURCE: J Physiol Anthropol Appl Human Sci. 2003 Jul;22(4):203-8.

Multi-Vitamins: A Waste?

In the fitness industry and among medical professionals there has been a long on-going debate as to the necessity of taking a daily multi-vitamin. Some so-called experts claim that if you "eat right" then a multi-vitamin is unnecessary. Often, these people claim that the only function of a multi-vitamin supplement is to "make up" for where your diet left off. Others in this camp argue that the vitamins are largely lost due to urination and therefore that using a vitamin is tantamount to flushing your money down the drain.

Others, by contrast, claim that a multi-vitamin is necessary for optimal health, and that one must be consumed because "minimum health" is simply not enough.

So who is right?

Researchers in Boston conducted a study with 15 healthy adult subjects, and did two tests: a test before supplementation to test vitamin and mineral concentrations in blood, and a test after supplementation to test vitamin and mineral concentration levels in blood.

Researchers discovered that the test "…results are suggestive of using multi-micronutrients dietary supplements…"

So, the results are clear: Stop listening to self-proclaimed gurus, and listen to scientific evidence. For best bodybuilding results, supplement daily with a multi-vitamin and mineral formula.

Source: Navarro M, Wood RJ. Plasma changes in micronutrients following a multivitamin and mineral supplement in healthy adults. J Am Coll Nutr. 2003 Apr;22(2):124-32.

Body Image…

All of us know how powerful the media can be. Almost daily we are bombarded by advertisements for the latest "must have" gadget that will give us more happiness, more free time, and a longer life.

Many have speculated also that the media plays a large role in how people feel about how they look. For years the media has been saying that their impact is minimal and that they are simply a reflection of what people think. Others claim that the media acts as a guiding force of culture, affecting everyone with its images.

So who is right?

A recent study has demonstrated that the media DOES, indeed, have an effect on how people perceive their body images. In fact, by following the media one can develop an unrealistic body image.

This, of course, is not ground breaking news. But this scientific study should be a clear message to younger bodybuilders who read the bodybuilding magazines, hoping to look like the athletes in them, and thinking that its possible to do so without illegal drugs, that the magazines are a fantasy of sorts, almost like comic books. They are full of unrealistic images, and if you buy into the idea that you should look like the people in the magazines, it could very well end up making you a frustrated bodybuilder, instead of a happy one. Take the media with a grain of salt and focus on being the healthiest bodybuilder possible.

SOURCE: Leit RA, Gray JJ, Pope HG Jr. The media's representation of the ideal male body: a cause for muscle dysmorphia? Int J Eat Disord. 2002 Apr;31(3):334-8.

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The information provided in this publication is for educational and informational purposes only and does not serve as a replacement to care provided by your own personal health care team or physician. The author does not render or provide medical advice, and no individual should make any medical decisions or change their health behavior based on information provided here. Readers are encouraged to confirm the information contained herein with other sources. Readers and consumers should review the information in this publication carefully with their professional health care provider. The information in this or other publications authored by the writer is not intended to replace medical advice offered by physicians. Reliance on any information provided by the author is solely at your own risk. The author does not recommend or endorse any specific tests, products, medication, procedures, opinions, or other information that may be presented in the publication. The author does not control information, advertisements, content, and articles provided by discussed third-party information suppliers. Further, the author does not warrant or guarantee that the information contained in written publications, from him or any source is accurate or error-free. The author accepts no responsibility for materials contained in the publication that you may find offensive. You are solely responsible for viewing and/or using the material contained in the authored publications in compliance with the laws of your country of residence, and your personal conscience. The author will not be liable for any direct, indirect, consequential, special, exemplary, or other damages arising from the use of information contained in this or other publications.

Copyright © Clayton South, 2003 All rights reserved.

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Additional References

  1. Mukhtar H, Ahmad N. Green tea in chemoprevention of cancer. Toxicol Sci. 1999 Dec;52(2 Suppl):111-7.
  2. Sung H, Nah J, Chun S, Park H, Yang SE, Min WK. In vivo antioxidant effect of green tea. Eur J Clin Nutr. 2000 Jul;54(7):527-9.
  3. Salucci M, Stivala LA, Maiani G, Bugianesi R, Vannini V. Flavonoids uptake and their effect on cell cycle of human colon adenocarcinoma cells (Caco2). Br J Cancer. 2002 May 20;86(10):1645-51.
  4. Weisburger JH. Lifestyle, health and disease prevention: the underlying mechanisms. Eur J Cancer Prev. 2002 Aug;11 Suppl 2:S1-7.
  5. Lin JK, Liang YC. Cancer chemoprevention by tea polyphenols. Proc Natl Sci Counc Repub China B. 2000 Jan;24(1):1-13.
  6. Demeule M, Michaud-Levesque J, Annabi B, Gingras D, Boivin D, Jodoin J, Lamy S, Bertrand Y, Beliveau R. Green tea catechins as novel antitumor and antiangiogenic compounds. Curr Med Chem Anti-Canc Agents. 2002 Jul;2(4):441-63.
  7. Ahmad N, Mukhtar H. Green tea polyphenols and cancer: biologic mechanisms and practical implications. Nutr Rev. 1999 Mar;57(3):78-83.
  8. Benzie IF, Szeto YT, Strain JJ, Tomlinson B. Consumption of green tea causes rapid increase in plasma antioxidant power in humans. Nutr Cancer. 1999;34(1):83-7.
  9. Brown MD. Green tea (Camellia sinensis) extract and its possible role in the prevention of cancer. Altern Med Rev. 1999 Oct;4(5):360-70.
  10. Weber JM, Ruzindana-Umunyana A, Imbeault L, Sircar S. Inhibition of adenovirus infection and adenain by green tea catechins. Antiviral Res. 2003 Apr;58(2):167-73.
  11. Green tea. Altern Med Rev. 2000 Aug;5(4):372-5.
  12. Chantre P, Lairon D. Recent findings of green tea extract AR25 (Exolise) and its activity for the treatment of obesity. Phytomedicine. 2002 Jan;9(1):3-8.
  13. Bell SJ, Goodrick GK. A functional food product for the management of weight. Crit Rev Food Sci Nutr. 2002 Mar;42(2):163-78.
  14. Yamamoto T, Hsu S, Lewis J, Wataha J, Dickinson D, Singh B, Bollag WB, Lockwood P, Ueta E, Osaki T, Schuster G. Green tea polyphenol causes differential oxidative environments in tumor versus normal epithelial cells. J Pharmacol Exp Ther. 2003 Oct;307(1):230-6. Epub 2003 Sep 03