Exercise capacity of vegan, lacto-ovo-vegetarian and omnivorous recreational runners.
J Int Soc Sports Nutr. 2019 May 20;16(1):23
Authors: Nebl J, Haufe S, Eigendorf J, Wasserfurth P, Tegtbur U, Hahn A
BACKGROUND: In search of the right nutrition for the athlete, numerous nutritional strategies and diets were discussed over time. However, the influence of plant-based diets, especially veganism, on exercise capacity has not been clarified.
METHODS: We conducted a cross-sectional study to compare the exercise capacity of vegan (VEG, n?=?24), lacto-ovo-vegetarian (LOV, n?=?26) and omnivorous (OMN, n?=?26) recreational runners. To determine maximal exercise capacity, participants performed an incremental exercise test on a bicycle ergometer until voluntary exhaustion. During the test capillary blood samples were taken at several time points for the measurement of arterial lactate [lac] and glucose [glc] concentrations. To determine nutrient intake, a 24?h dietary recall was conducted.
RESULTS: The groups showed comparable training habits in terms of training frequency (mean 3.08???0.90 time/wk., p?=?0.735), time (mean 2.93???1.34?h/wk., p?=?0.079) and running distance (mean 29.5???14.3?km/wk., p?=?0.054). Moreover, similar maximum power output (PmaxBW) was observed in all three groups (OMN: 4.15???0.48?W/kg, LOV: 4.20???0.47?W/kg, VEG: 4.16???0.55?W/kg; p?=?0.917) and no differences regarding [lac] throughout the exercise test and maximum lactate could be observed between the groups (OMN: 11.3???2.19?mmol/l, LOV: 11.0???2.59?mmol/l, VEG: 11.9???1.98?mmol/l; p?=?0.648).
CONCLUSION: The data indicate that each examined diet has neither advantages nor disadvantages with regard to exercise capacity. These results suggest that a vegan diet can be a suitable alternative for ambitious recreational runners.
TRIAL REGISTRATION: German Clinical Trials Register ( DRKS00012377 ). Registered on 28 April 2017.
PMID: 31109329 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]