FEB 02, 2023 9:00 AM PST

Compound in Beetroot Juice Significantly Improves Muscle Force

WRITTEN BY: Savannah Logan

A new study published in Acta Physiologica has shown that consumption of dietary nitrate, a molecule found in abundance in beetroot juice as well as other root vegetables and leafy greens, increases muscle force during exercise.

The randomized cross-over study included 10 healthy adults who consumed either dietary nitrate or a placebo. An hour later, the participants performed a maximum-intensity leg exercise for five minutes on an exercise machine. The researchers used a tracer to track the distribution of nitrate in the participants’ blood, saliva, urine, and muscle before and after the exercise.

The researchers saw that nitrate levels increased significantly in the muscles of the participants. This, in turn, led to an increase in muscle force during exercise compared to when the participants were given a placebo. The increase in muscle force after taking dietary nitrate was about 7% compared to placebo.

Previous research has shown that dietary nitrate is good for both endurance training and high-intensity exercise, and this study provides new evidence regarding the mechanisms behind increased performance. Exercise is a vital part of improving and maintaining heart health, and the American Heart Association (AHA) recommends that adults get at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic activity or 75 minutes of vigorous-intensity aerobic activity per week. Additionally, the AHA recommends at least two days per week of moderate- to vigorous-intensity strength training exercise per week. Beetroot juice or other sources of dietary nitrate may be a helpful addition to a daily exercise routine to improve performance and endurance, and boosting your performance may make your exercise routine both more enjoyable and easier to stick with.

Sources: Acta Physiologica, Science Daily, AHA

About the Author
Doctorate (PhD)
Savannah (she/her) is a scientific writer specializing in cardiology at Labroots. Her background is in medical writing with significant experience in obesity, oncology, and infectious diseases. She has conducted research in microbial biophysics, optics, and education. She received her Ph.D. from the University of Oregon.
You May Also Like
Loading Comments...