Athletic performance may benefit from probiotics, according to a presentation made at the International Probiotic Association World Conference.
The studies were performed using products from Dr. Ohhira’s Probiotics, a supplement company, and were said to benefit VO2 max and the anaerobic threshold.
VO2 refers to the ability of the body to efficiently use oxygen during exercise, while the anaerobic threshold describes the highest intensity of exercise that can be achieved over an extended period.
Study subjects saw an 8.4% increase in haemoglobin levels and VO2 increases of 30%. The study also found some evidence of improved removal of lactic acid from the bloodstream
It is widely known that exercise can suppress the body’s immune response, and that ingesting large quantities of protein can cause gastrointestinal distress. These problems can, according to many experts, be alleviated by the use of probiotics.
Although it is not clear why the consumption of probiotics would have this beneficial effect for athletes, it is speculated that they may improve digestion of key nutrients.