A recent study on ten male cyclists indicates that oxygen nanobubble drinks improve athletic performance. But what is a nanobubble drink, and how does it enhance athletic performance? In this article, you will learn what an oxygen nanobubble drink is, how it impacts athletic performance, and what the study results showed.
Nanobubbles are nanoscopic-sized bubbles with no buoyancy and allow for oxygen delivery to tissues in the body.
Studies have shown that athletes with increased oxygen uptake have improved endurance and performance.
Limitations of the study, including a small sample size, require additional research to confirm the study results.
What are nanobubbles?
Nanobubbles are nanoscopic-sized bubbles with no buoyancy, so they don't rise and pop. These nanobubbles are incredibly small and invisible to the naked human eye. Because the nanobubbles can't rise and pop in the drink, it allows them to deliver oxygen to tissues of the body when the drink is consumed.
While the lungs are the primary organ for gas exchange, studies suggest that when oxygenated nanobubbles are consumed, other organs, like those in the gastrointestinal tract, may provide a gas exchange surface to increase oxygen consumption or oxygen uptake. When there is more oxygen in the body, it allows athletes to perform longer or harder.
Benefits of oxygenated performance with exercise
Studies have shown that there is a direct correlation between the endurance of athletes and oxygen uptake.
The physical capacity of athletes can determine the success they can achieve in their sport. Avrox Technologies Ltd funded a research study to measure the absolute and relative VO2 max of 66 males, including 22 soccer players, 18 volleyball players, and 26 non-athletes. The peak oxygen uptake (VO2 max) values were recorded during a six-minute cycle test at 150 watts. The values were divided by body weight and represented the relative value of maximal oxygen uptake.
The results indicated a higher oxygen uptake level in the athletes with higher athletic performance. In this study, the soccer players had the highest VO2 max values. Playing soccer demands a combination of aerobic and anaerobic exercises, which can be challenging to sustain for the entire match. Therefore, it's crucial for players to have an efficient and energetic system to maintain their full strength throughout the game. Athletes performing at higher aerobic and anaerobic levels can produce more oxygen to support their performance.
Nanobubble study results
With growing evidence that suggests supplemental oxygen during exercise and recovery assists with athletic performance, a double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled study was performed on ten male cyclists. The cyclists' aerobic activity was measured to show submaximal and maximal exercise after consuming an oxygen nanobubble or a placebo beverage. The time to complete submaximal or maximal exercise after consuming an oxygen-nanobubble was 2.4% faster when compared to the placebo group. The conclusion was that oxygen-nanobubble beverages improve performance during submaximal and repeated spring cycling and may provide an effective performance aid for competitive cyclists.
The results showed evidence that the oxygen nanobubble beverage may enhance athletic performance, with no gastrointestinal discomfort reported following consumption. Consumption of the oxygenated nanobubble beverage may give small performance benefits for athletes during vigorous exercise. It may also benefit athletes undergoing repeated levels of high-intensity training.
The study also hypothesized that the lecithin coating of the oxygen bubbles might act as an oxygen carrier, increasing the oxygen quantity in originally encapsulated nanobubbles. Additional research is needed to prove this hypothesis.
There were some limitations to this study. The sample size was very small. While the results indicate that consuming oxygenated nanobubbles can improve athletic performance, further research is needed to clarify the physiological mechanisms contributing to increased performance.
Additional studies to come
While recent studies conclude that consuming oxygenated nanobubble drinks enhances athletic performance, the evidence has limitations based on the sample size. Additional research is needed to confirm the results of this study.
A clinical trial that started in April 2023 and is expected to be complete by June 2024 is analyzing the study’s results further by conducting a study on 42 rowers. This study will measure the time participants take to complete a 2000 m row after consuming an oxygen nanobubble drink or a placebo drink, to evaluate the nanobubbles efficacy on the participants' exercising ability.
This study will measure the time taken to complete the 2000 m row and then analyze the changes in the following criteria before and after the 2000 m row, comparing the nanobubble drink to the placebo:
- Heart rate
- Oxygen saturation
- The rate of perceived exertion
- Blood lactate
- Blood glucose
Further research is required to confirm whether oxygenated nanobubble drinks genuinely improve athletic performance, as the initial human study had limitations.
- Journal of Dietary Supplements. A Double-Blind, Randomized, Placebo-Controlled Pilot Study examining an Oxygen Nanobubble Beverage for 16.1-km Time Trial and Repeated Spring Cycling Performance.
- Journal of the Association of Basic Medical Sciences. Aerobic Capacity as an Indicator in Different Kinds of Sports.
- ClinicalTrials.Gov. Oxygen Nanobubble Drink Impact on Exercise in Elite Athletes.