Australian Researchers Find Vitamins C and E Benefit Olympic Athletes

Article excerpt

LA GRANGE, Ill. -- Olympic athletes who consume large quantities of oxygen during training and competition can benefit from supplementation with vitamins C and E, according to sports researchers who presented their new findings at the recent American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) meeting in Dallas.

Tissue damage experienced by endurance athletes during intensive training could be lessened and recovery from this training damage could be speeded by supplementation with vitamins C and E, said exercise physiologist Ian Gillam. Gillam conducted the study at the Australian Institute of Sport in Canberra, Australia.

Vitamin C and E supplementation helps to optimize the elite athlete's training regimen, permitting more exercise with less recovery time. This could boost an athlete's performance by a fraction of a second -- enough to win "the gold" at an Olympic event.

At a panel discussion of "Antioxidants and the Elite Athlete" convened during the ACSM meeting, researchers concluded that antioxidant supplementation is of particular benefit for athletes who participate in marathon running, long-distance cycling, cross-country skiing, Iron Man competitions, and other exhaustive events. But they noted that antioxidant supplements are also important for the so-called "weekend warriors," who break the routine of a sedentary lifestyle with sporadic bouts of athletics that put their bodies under serious oxidative stress. …