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Keep in mind that phenolic antioxidants like those found in coffee, tea or healthy plant foods work completely differently from vitamin E and C - instead of excerting direct, physiologically relevant antioxidant effects, they work by triggering various signaling pathways (like nrf2) which are subject to complex physiological feedback mechanisms, making it almost impossible to overdose on those antioxidants. There is also no evidence to suggest that, taken in normal physiological doses, vitamin C or E interfere with exercise gains (to the contrary, there is some evidence to suggest that at dose slightly above the RDA, they may fasten recovery and protect against exercise-induced immune deficits). All studies showing a disadvantage administered what I would consider “megadoses” of both vitamins for which there is no evidence of beneficial effects in generally healthy people anyway. Just make sure that you don’t take more than 500 mg of vitamin C or 100 IU of vitamin E in supplemental form and you really don’t need to worry, in my opinion. And if you take a multivitamin, maybe do so in the evening, after exercising.
Thanks for that clarification. Oh in my case I ram my 23andme dna data through the report generators here and it looks like in my case I need to keep my vitamin E below 75 IU.
Interesting. What is the related SNP and what rationale does the report give for that recommendation?
The SNP rs1695(A:G) raises levels of pro-inflammatory cytokines in the blood.
@woody42 That’s definitely a good question. I have heard Ben Greenfield mention on his podcast a few times a study that showed drinking green tea, despite being high in antioxidants, did not have the same hindrance on muscle gains that taking other exogenous antioxidants. (I tried looking for the episode/study but could not find either)
I still try to limit the antioxidants consumed around training time whether they are from more “whole” sources like coffee/tea/food or pills.
That all being said. If you need the coffee to workout, working with a high amount of antioxidants is still probably much better than not working out. (Although this is not a very scientific conclusion)
Several other studies have shown these antioxidant vitamins hamper muscle gains from resistance exercise. But this raises the question is it the combination of vitamin E and C that is doing this or would just taking one of them still have this effect or could those 3 cups of decaf coffee with all it’s antioxidants I have right before going to the gym be a bad idea. So personally I will be limiting my vitamin E to just a little above the RDA and definitely not taking vitamin c right before the gym !
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