If you’re thinking maybe you need a little more stamina to get through the day, or to run that marathon, you may want to start chugging beetroot juice.
Scientists in the U.K. have discovered that beetroot juice boosts stamina by making muscles more fuel-efficient. According to a report on London’s Daily Mail Online, the same researchers said last year that the dark red vegetable juice can increase physical endurance.
The study examined men 19 to 38, who cycled on exercise bikes for the research. Drinking about 16 ounces of beetroot juice per day for a week enabled the men to cycle for about 16 percent longer before tiring.
The researchers now say they understand how the beetroot boost works. They found that consuming the juice doubled the amount of nitrate in the blood of the study volunteers, and reduced the rate at which muscles used their main source of energy. Beetroot juice helped muscles to work more efficiently and lowered their oxygen uptake.
Research leader Professor Andy Jones noted that since the study came out they’ve seen an increased interest in the benefits of beetroot juice from people in pro sports. ‘I expect this study to attract even more attention from athletes,’ he told the Daily Mail.
Hey, who needs steroids when you can down a liter of delicious beetroot juice?
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