Nav: Home

The lowdown on sports nutrition supplements

February 10, 2016

Competitive athletes train hard, eat right and often turn to supplements to boost their performance. But do nutrition powders, pills and drinks really help? Chemical & Engineering News, the weekly newsmagazine of the American Chemical Society looks at the science -- or lack thereof -- behind the sports nutrition market.

Melody M. Bomgardner, a senior editor at C&EN, reports that the market for nutrition products aimed to improve athletic performance is growing at about 5 percent per year. It reached $6.3 billion in 2014. From the steady staple of protein powders to newer fads like grape seed extract, athletes have many options to wade through but not many sources to turn to for verifying a manufacturer's claims. It is up to the consumer to search for and evaluate the clinical evidence -- if any -- and decide whether a product is worth trying.

Clinical studies on supplements are becoming more important for marketing purposes. But the testing process is still a work in progress. Critics say the numbers of participants are often too small for results to be generalizable. Additionally, some of the studies that are published might focus on measurements, such as blood or urine biomarkers, that don't necessarily translate into improved performance. In other words, a lot of questions remain about the effectiveness -- and safety -- of many supplements.
-end-
The American Chemical Society is a nonprofit organization chartered by the U.S. Congress. With more than 158,000 members, ACS is the world's largest scientific society and a global leader in providing access to chemistry-related research through its multiple databases, peer-reviewed journals and scientific conferences. Its main offices are in Washington, D.C., and Columbus, Ohio.

To automatically receive news releases from the American Chemical Society, contact newsroom@acs.org.Follow us: TwitterFacebook

American Chemical Society

Related Athletes Articles:

Sleep disturbances predict substance use among college athletes
Preliminary results of a new study show that sleep disturbance is strongly related to the use of alcohol, tobacco, and illicit drugs among student athletes in college.
Study looks at the prevalence, challenges of athletes with ADHD
It's estimated there are more than six million children in the United States with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).
Athletes' symptom anxiety linked to risk of injury
The anxiety experienced by elite athletes over illness symptoms is linked to the risk of being injured during competition and should be taken seriously, according to a study carried out at the IAAF World Championships in Athletics 2015 and led by researchers at Linköping University, Sweden.
Student-athletes not sleeping enough, intervention could help
Survey results suggest that more than 40 percent of college athletes aren't getting the amount of sleep recommended for healthy adults.
New research on the muscles of elite athletes: When quality is better than quantity
A Danish-Swedish research team working on a project led by University of Southern Denmark has discovered that muscle endurance is not only determined by the number of mitochondria, but also their structure.
Detecting a new doping trend among Olympic athletes
Olympics officials already contending with the illegal use of steroids among athletes are now being proactive about a potential new trend in performance enhancement: gene doping.
Robot therapist hits the spot with athletes
Trials of a prototype robot for sports therapy have just begun in Singapore, to create a high quality and repeatable treatment routine to improve sports recovery, reducing reliance on trained therapists.
Athletes with concussion maintain improvements after use of mirroring neurotechnology
Brain State Technologies announces that a series of young athletes with long-term symptoms after concussion showed a variety of lasting improvements, after using HIRREM® neurotechnology.
Athletes may have white matter brain changes 6 months after a concussion
New research finds white matter changes in the brains of athletes six months after a concussion.
Rio athletes may benefit from 'leaky gut' therapy
'Leaky gut' is a condition where the thin mucosal barrier of the gut, which plays a role in absorbing nutrients and preventing large molecules and germs from the gut entering the blood stream, becomes less effective.

Related Athletes Reading:

Best Science Podcasts 2019

We have hand picked the best science podcasts for 2019. Sit back and enjoy new science podcasts updated daily from your favorite science news services and scientists.
Now Playing: TED Radio Hour

Climate Crisis
There's no greater threat to humanity than climate change. What can we do to stop the worst consequences? This hour, TED speakers explore how we can save our planet and whether we can do it in time. Guests include climate activist Greta Thunberg, chemical engineer Jennifer Wilcox, research scientist Sean Davis, food innovator Bruce Friedrich, and psychologist Per Espen Stoknes.
Now Playing: Science for the People

#527 Honey I CRISPR'd the Kids
This week we're coming to you from Awesome Con in Washington, D.C. There, host Bethany Brookshire led a panel of three amazing guests to talk about the promise and perils of CRISPR, and what happens now that CRISPR babies have (maybe?) been born. Featuring science writer Tina Saey, molecular biologist Anne Simon, and bioethicist Alan Regenberg. A Nobel Prize winner argues banning CRISPR babies won’t work Geneticists push for a 5-year global ban on gene-edited babies A CRISPR spin-off causes unintended typos in DNA News of the first gene-edited babies ignited a firestorm The researcher who created CRISPR twins defends...