Effects of an H2-infused, Nitric Oxide-Producing Functional Beverage on Exercise and Cognitive Performance

Dr. McCullough, Jason Kharman, Tyler W. LeBaron

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DOI: 10.37714/josam.v2i4.79 DOI is the universal ID for this study.

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Background. Exercise performance and recovery are impaired by excessive levels of oxidative stress and inflammation. However, both reactive oxygen species (ROS) and inflammation improve exercise performance including mitochondrial ATP production and force of muscle contraction. They also are essential mediators in providing the benefits and training adaptations that occur from exercise. Nitric oxide (NO•) is a gaseous radical that increases blood flow via dilation of the blood vessels and also improves mitochondrial function. Therefore, NO• improves exercise performance and capacity, but only when produced at the right times and in the right locations. Excessive levels of NO• contribute to nitrosative stress due to the spontaneous reaction with superoxide to form toxic peroxynitrite. This decreases the ½ life of nitric oxide resulting in less NO• benefits and in cellular damage leading to impaired exercise performance. In contrast to conventional antioxidants and anti-inflammatories, molecular hydrogen (H2) has been demonstrated to exert selective antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects by decreasing only excessive inflammation and reducing toxic oxidants without disturbing important signaling ROS, like NO•. Moreover, H2 can regulate NO• production, increase its circulating ½ life and beneficial NO• cycling, potentiate the bioactivity of NO•, and act as a NO• mimetic by increasing cGMP levels. At the same time H2 can prevent peroxynitrite formation and reduce the harm from NO• metabolism, such as lower nitrotyrosine levels. Methods. The effects of an H2-infused, nitric oxide-producing beverage (Hydro Shot) on nitric oxide production, blood flow, aerobic and anaerobic exercise, and cognitive function were assessed. Results. Ingestion of the functional beverage significantly increased production of NO• and a concomitant increase in blood flow. It also improved aerobic performance as measured by VO2, and anaerobic performance as indicated by delayed muscle fatigue, and increased peak torque during maximal isokinetic leg extensions. Additionally, the H2/NO• combination significantly improved indices of cognitive function including, focus, speed, plasticity, etc. Conclusion. The molecular crosstalk between H2 and NO•coupled with these preliminary results indicate that Hydro Shot is uniquely qualified for sports performance and exercise medicine and warrants additional clinical and mechanistic research.

Publish Year 2021
Country United States
Rank Positive
Journal Journal of Science and Medicine
Primary Topic Whole Body
Secondary TopicExcercise
Model Human
Tertiary TopicPerformance Enhancement
Vehicle Water, Commercial (Hydro Shot)
pH Neutral
Application Ingestion
Complement Nitric Oxide (NO)