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Am J Chin Med. 2011;39(3):441-50.

Effects of Panax ginseng supplementation on muscle damage and inflammation after uphill treadmill running in humans.

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Department of Physical Education, Kyungpook National University, Daegu, Republic of Korea.


The purpose of this investigation was to determine whether Panax ginseng extract intake would influence exercise-induced muscle damage and inflammation responses. Eighteen male college students were randomly assigned to either an RG intake group (RG, n = 9) or a placebo group (P, n = 9). All subjects performed a high-intensity uphill treadmill running task (two rounds of 45 min at 10 km/h speed with a 15 degree uphill slope separated by 5 min of rest). The RG group ingested 20 g/day of Korean red ginseng extract (mixed with 200 ml of water) three times/day for seven days prior to performing the uphill treadmill exercise test and for four days after the treadmill test, while the P group ingested 200 ml of water containing Agastachis Herba on the same schedule. Plasma creatine kinase activity (CK) and interlukin-6 (IL-6) levels were measured at pre-exercise and 24, 48, 72, and 96 h post-exercise; the IL-6 level was also measured at 1 and 2 h post-exercise. To evaluate insulin sensitivity, the oral glucose tolerance test (OGTT) was performed 24 h post-exercise. Plasma CK level in RG was significantly lower than that in P 72 h post-exercise (p < 0.05), and IL-6 level was significantly decreased in RG during the 2 h and 3 h recovery period compared to that of P (p < 0.05). Plasma glucose and insulin responses in RG were significantly reduced compared to those of P (p < 0.05). The results of this study suggest that RG supplementation could reduce exercise-induced muscle damage and inflammatory responses, resulting in improvements in insulin sensitivity.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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