Astragalus and dong quai improve running times

Chinese medicine uses these two nutrients to boost energy and circulation.

In this study, 36 men, aged 20 to 30, took a placebo or an extract containing 5,000 mg of astragalus with dong quai (angelica sinensis) per day, for 11 days. On the eighth day, the men ran 13 kilometers at maximum effort.

Compared to placebo, the men taking the plant-based extract finished 12 minutes, or 14 percent, sooner. Iron levels were also 63 percent higher immediately after the race, and were still 31 percent above placebo levels 72 hours later.

Doctors explained that a hormone that regulates iron was suppressed in the astragalus-angelica group, allowing the runners higher iron levels, and accelerating recovery from the exercise. The men also had fewer signs of oxidative stress compared to placebo.


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