Monday, 7 April 2014

Why your antioxidant supplements are making you slower

Some popular buzzwords in the world of nutrition in athletics include “antioxidants” and “decreasing inflammation.”  These words sound like good things, don’t they?  Well, they might be at times, but in just as many other scenarios, they are likely having a detrimental impact on performance.
The Basics
When we workout, or are exposed to other sources of stress (like UV radiation), charged particles called Reactive Oxygen Species (ROS) are produced in our body.  These charged particles then can react with cells in our body, creating inflammation.  This has been advertised to us as a bad thing, linking ROS and inflammation to injury, decreased recovery time, and even causing a number of diseases (such as cancer) with chronic and prolonged exposure.
Antioxidants, such as vitamin C or glutathione, work to help to take the charge away from these ROS.  With no charge, the ROS are no longer reactive, and the risk of creating cellular damage and inflammation goes down.
So decreased cell damage, decreased inflammation, faster recovery- how can this be bad?