Title

Running Economy and Maximal Oxygen Consumption After 4 Weeks of Oral Echinacea Supplementation

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

7-1-2012

Department

Human Performance and Recreation

Abstract

Whitehead, MT, Martin, TD, Scheett, TP, and Webster, MJ. Running economy and maximal oxygen consumption after 4 weeks of oral Echinacea supplementation. J Strength Cond Res 26(7): 1928-1933, 2012-The purpose of this investigation was to determine the effects of 4 weeks of oral Echinacea (ECH) supplementation on erythropoietin (EPO), red blood cell (RBC) count, running economy (RE), and (V) over dotO(2)max. Twenty-four men aged 24.9 +/- 4.2 years, height 178.9 +/- 7.9 cm, weight 87.9 +/- 14.6 kg, body fat 19.3 +/- 6.5% were grouped using a double-blind design and self-administered an 8,000-mg.d(-1) dosage of either ECH or placebo (PLA) in 5 x 400 mg x 4 times per day for 28 days. Blood samples were collected and analyzed for RBCs and EPO using automated flow cytometery and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. Maximal graded exercise tests (GXTs) were administered to measure (V) over dotO(2)max, RE, and heart-rate responses. Analysis of variance was used to determine statistically significant differences (P <= 0.05). The EPO increased significantly in ECH at 7 days (ECH: 15.75 +/- 0.64, PLA: 10.01 +/- 0.73 mU.ml(-1)), 14 days (ECH: 18.88 +/- 0.71, PLA: 11.02 +/- 0.69 mU.ml(-1)), and 21 days (ECH: 16.06 +/- 0.55, PLA: 9.20 +/- 0.55 mU.ml(-1)). (V) over dotO(2)max increased significantly in ECH (ECH: 1.47 +/- 1.28, PLA: -0.13 +/- 0.52%). Running economy improved significantly in ECH as indicated by a decrease in submaximal (V) over dotO(2) during the first 2 stages of the GXT (stage 1: ECH -1.50 +/- 1.21, PLA 0.60 +/- 1.95%; stage 2: ECH -1.67 +/- 1.43, PLA 0.01 +/- 1.03%). These data suggest that ECH supplementation results in significant increases in EPO, (V) over dotO(2)max, and running economy.

Publication Title

Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research

Volume

26

Issue

7

First Page

1928

Last Page

1933