Low zinc may impact physical performance

Related tags Physical performance Carbon dioxide

Low zinc levels may impact physical performance, suggests a small

The role of zinc during exercise is not well understood but some zinc-containing enzymes are thought to regulate energy expenditure.

The new trial, although small, suggests that more research should be done on the mineral and its impact on the cardiorespiratory function. It may be an important nutrient for sports nutrition.

A team from the US Department of Agriculture's Agricultural Research Service tested the effects of low zinc intake on the physical performance of 14 men aged 20 to 31 years old.

They looked in particular at the effects on the carbonic anhydrase enzyme, found in red blood cells and influential on the body's removal of carbon dioxide, and cardiorespiratory function during exercise.

The men were split into two groups and fed either a diet containing only 3.8mg of zinc per day, or a diet supplemented with 18.7 mg of the mineral.They followed the diet for nine weeks, and after a six-week washout period, switched to the alternative diet.

The researchers tested physical performance on two types of exercist tests on a cycle ergometer.

They report in the May issue of the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition​ (vol 81, No. 5, 1045-1051) that peak oxygen uptake, carbon dioxide output, and respiratory exchange ratio were lower when the men had a restricted zinc intake than during the supplement phase.

Blood tests showed that when the men were on the low-zinc diet, the activity of the carbonic anhydrase enzymes in red blood cells was reduced.

This could explain the poorer muscle strength and increased tiredness seen in previous studies on zinc.

"These findings indicate that low dietary zinc is associated with significant reductions in zinc status, including red blood cell carbonic anhydrase activities, and impaired metabolic responses during exercise,"​ conclude the authors.

Related topics Research Minerals Energy

Related news

Show more

Related products

show more

An Insights-driven Holistic Approach to Health

An Insights-driven Holistic Approach to Health

Content provided by Lipofoods, a Lubrizol Company | 25-Sep-2023 | Product Brochure

As they adopt the notion of holistic health, proactive consumers are driving the demand for products that have science-backed ingredients and offer sensory...

Full Vegan Protein Ingredients Solution

Full Vegan Protein Ingredients Solution

Content provided by Ingredients4u AG | 24-Jul-2023 | Product Brochure

Plant-based products have always been a hot topic in the market, the plant-based food market was valued at $29.4 billion in 2020.

Robuvit® for Natural Energy and Mitochondrial Support

Robuvit® for Natural Energy and Mitochondrial Support

Content provided by Horphag Research | 01-May-2023 | Clinical Study

Robuvit® French oak extract is a caffeine-free natural energizer that provides support for managing fatigue and improving energy levels. Learn how this...

LIPOFER™: a bioavailable and stable source of iron

LIPOFER™: a bioavailable and stable source of iron

Content provided by Lipofoods, a Lubrizol Company | 26-Apr-2023 | White Paper

Maintaining adequate iron levels is critical to maintaining a healthy body, with deficiencies being the cause of several health issues including anemia...

Follow us


View more