As I stated in today’s tweet, researchers have found that tomato juice is a great option for a post workout recovery drink. In order to understand why tomato juice might help the body recover better than commercial energy drinks, I thought it would be a good idea to dig into one of the studies that found tomato juice to be beneficial.
The study focused on the effects that tomato juice had on creatinine phosphokinase (CPK) and lactate dehydrogenase (LDH). The high presence of these enzymes in the body is a strong indicator that the body has muscle damage. The study examined fifteen participants who were all athletes that had high CPK and LDH levels. The study’s authors administered tomato juice before, during, and after exercise to nine of the athletes for a two month period.
After the two month period, the study found that the tomato juice significantly reduced the levels of CPK and LDH in the nine athletes. The authors theorized that the presence of the powerful antioxidant Lycopene in tomato juice plays a key role in helping the body recover. Therefore, instead of relying on high priced energy drinks or gels, the best post workout recovery option may be a simple can of tomato juice.