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Yeast Derived Beta-Glucan May Reduce Exercise-Induced Inflammation and Muscle Damage

Yeast derived beta glucans usually originate in either baker’s yeast or brewer’s yeast. A recent study suggests that yeast derived beta-glucan may help reduce exercise-induced inflammation and muscle damage.

Thirty-one healthy young adults participated in the study. They were given 250 mg of yeast beta-glucan or a placebo daily for 13 days. Body composition and peak aerobic capacity were assessed at baseline. On the last day of the supplementation period, the participants performed a treadmill exercise at 55% peak aerobic capacity in a hot and humid environment. Changes in white blood cell counts, pro- and anti-inflammatory cytokines, markers of muscle damage, markers of muscle function, soreness, and profile of mood states were assessed prior to exercise and at 0, 2, and 72 hours after exercise.

Participants in the yeast beta-glucan group saw lower concentrations of serum pro-inflammatory cytokines following exercise compared to the placebo group. They also saw lower myoglobin levels compared to baseline levels 72 hours after exercise. In comparison, myoglobin levels in the placebo group were elevated compared to baseline levels. High myoglobin levels are an indication of muscle damage.

In addition, participants in the yeast beta-glucan group saw improvements in mood state, with increases in vigor and reductions in anger. Participants in the placebo group saw reductions in vigor and increases in anger.

The study was conducted by researchers from Towson University and Lindenwood University. It was published online ahead of print on April 19, 2020 in the journal Nutrients.

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