Microelements plus polyphenol supplement shows performance adaptation benefits among fit men

By Hank Schultz contact

- Last updated on GMT

© iStock / takoburito
© iStock / takoburito
A new study suggests a supplement containing plant-derived inorganic microelements and apple polyphenols that has been shown to boost blood levels of ATP may increase strength and power adaptations in resistance trained men.

The study, which used Futureceuticals’ elevATP ingredient, was conducted at the University of Colorado. Researchers led by Jordan Joy and associated with MusclePharm Corp, Texas Women’s University, Futureceuticals among others performed the study at CU’s Anschutz Medical Campus in Denver. They recruited 33 healthy, resistance trained young men, of whom 25 completed the study. Their average age was 25 and they were all at healthy body weights. The participants supplemented once daily with either one serving (150 mg) of a proprietary blend of ancient peat and apple extract or an equal-volume, visually-identical placebo daily. Supervised resistance training consisted of eight weeks of daily undulating periodized training followed by a two week overreach and a two  week taper phase.

Peak power and velocity endpoints

The supplement and placebo were administered in a liposomal formulation delivered via a dropper.  The participants followed a strength training regime supervised by a coach.  The results were measured via the following tests: the maximum weight lifted in a one-time repetition in the squat, deadlift and bench press.  Vertical jump peak power and peak velocity were also measured.  Squat and deadlift 1RM increased in those subjects using elevATP as opposed to placebo.  Vertical jump peak velocity increased in the treatment group compared to placebo from baseline to week 10 as did vertical jump peak power, which also increased throughout. Wingate peak power and watt:mass tended to favor the treatment group.

The ‘overreach’ phase was a particularly interesting portion of the study. Modern strength training includes periods of more-than-optimal output via efforts that are so difficult they actually depress an athlete’s results for a period of time thereafter.  Building muscle is a process of damage and repair, and these efforts damage the tissues faster than the body can build them back up during the normal recovery periods. Sprinters will run slower, lifters will be unable to lift the same maximum weight, etc. for a period of days or up to a week or two after these type of efforts.

But this destructive phase, when not taken to extremes  that cause actual injury and when timed properly in preparation for a competition, can ultimately lead to better results down the road. The study design included this training technique to see how elevATP could help athletes cope with these particularly sharp spikes of oxidative stress and tissue damage. The researchers concluded that elevATP helped the subjects cope with this stress better than the placebo group and in most measures they were able to increase results throughout without the plateau or outright decline often observed. This could leave open the possibility in future research for exploring how the amount of work performed by subjects in this phase might be increased still further for faster muscle strength and power gains.

Boosting the body’s natural process

The mode of action for elevATP has been validated in previous studies and sets this supplement apart from others in the ATP boosting game, said Andrew Wheeler, director of marketing for Futureceuticals, in that it seeks to help the body make more of its own ATP, a key molecule in the cellular energy pathway.  Many other products are based on the idea of direct ATP supplementation.

Our initial clinical research centered on measurement of acute increases in intracellular ATP in whole blood after ingestion of elevATP, as well as increases in ATP in muscles. It was important to demonstrate that unlike ingestion of exogenous ATP or other materials, only elevATP helps the body produce increased levels of its own mitochondrial ATP,” ​he said.

“The new study provides published evidence that elevATP improves performance and strength in resistance-trained athletes. Evidence of functional benefit is always the gold standard for any ingredient, and demonstration of a connection between increased mitochondrial energy and actual increases in specific strength, recovery and body composition parameters provides a source of confidence for product formulators and consumers,” ​Wheeler added.

Futureceuticals studied its ingredient in combination with PurEnergy, ChromaDex’s slow-release co-crystal caffeine and pterostilbene ingredient. There is a section of the sports product marketplace where having caffeine is almost a must, Wheeler said. But there are also consumers wary of the crash-and-burn effect they associate with caffeine (something the ChromaDex ingredient is designed to avoid, by the way).

There are people who desire the stimulatory effect of caffeine, but there is another segment who are looking for healthier, ‘non-stimulatory’ energy. ATP is widely considered the energy ‘currency’ of the body and is at the forefront of this healthy energy movement,”​ Wheeler said.

Source:BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine
“Ancient peat and apple extracts supplementation may improve strength and power adaptations in resistance trained men.”
2016 Jul 18;16(1):224. doi: 10.1186/s12906-016-1222-x
Authors: JM Joy et al.

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