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Dietary nitrate as modulator of physical performance and cardiovascular health

Kerley, Conor P.

Current Opinion in Clinical Nutrition & Metabolic Care: November 2017 - Volume 20 - Issue 6 - p 440–446
doi: 10.1097/MCO.0000000000000414
NUTRITION AND PHYSIOLOGICAL FUNCTION: Edited by Labros S. Sidossis and Annemie M.W. Schols

Purpose of review Early interventional trials reported improvements in cardiac and exercise outcomes with inorganic nitrate ingestion. The current review aims to provide a brief update of recent evidence regarding ergogenic and cardiovascular effects of dietary nitrate and practical recommendations.

Recent findings Recent evidence has been inconsistent and questions remain regarding effective dose, duration, and source of nitrate and cohorts likely to benefit. Dietary nitrate may be most relevant to those with vascular/metabolic impairments, those engaging in short-term, intense exercise, deconditioned individuals, and those with a low dietary nitrate intake.

Summary The evidence for cardiovascular/exercise benefit is plausible but inconsistent. However, dietary nitrate, in contrast to pharmacological nitrate, has a high benefit–risk ratio. Although nitrate supplementation has grown in popularity, it is suggested that increased green vegetables consumption may provide similar/superior benefits to nitrate supplementation in a cheaper, safer, and potentially tastier context.

Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine, 5100 Wisconsin Avenue, N.W. Ste. 400, Washington, District of Columbia, USA

Correspondence to Conor P. Kerley, PhD, BSc, Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine, 5100 Wisconsin Avenue, N.W. Ste. 400, Washington, DC 20016, USA. Tel: +12024233101; fax: +202 527 7400; e-mail: conorkerley@gmail.com

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