|Brain builders and muscle builders are similarly effective DNA protectors in the elderly.|
In the recent Austrian study, the subjects had been randomized to three groups. The previously described cognitive training group, which also served as a "control", as well as two resistance training groups.
"The RT groups (RT and RTS) performed two sessions of RT per week, supervised by a sport scientist, conducted on two non-consecutive days. Training attendance was recorded every session. The only equipment used was exercise bands and a chair. [...] The main part consisted of 10 exercises for the main muscle groups (legs, back, abdomen, chest, shoulder and arms). One training session started with 10 min of warm-up, continued with 30–40 min of strength training and ended with a 10-min cool-down. To keep the training stimulus high enough, the exercise program was adjusted to the participants’ individual needs, by either adapting the resistance of the elastic band (shorter or stronger band) or by modifying the exercise, by means of performing a more diffiult version. In the initial phase (4 weeks) one set of 15 repetitions was performed in order to learn the correct form of each exercise. From the fifth week on, the intensity and volume were progressively increased from two sets of light exercises to two sets of heavy resistance. If the participants could easily perform two sets of 15 repetitions they were told either to take more resistance or to perform a more difficult version of the exercise" (Franzke. 2014).In contrast to the RT group, which did "nothing", but the previously described resistance training regimen, the subjects in the RTS group consumed a multi-ingredient supplement every morning, as well as directly after each training session. Said supplement consisted of 20.7g protein [56 energy (En) %, 19.7g whey protein, 3 g leucine, >10 g essential amino acids], 9.3 g carbohydrates (25 En%, 0.8 BE); 3.0 g fat (18 En%), 1.2 g roughage (2 En%), 800 IU (20 μg) of vitamin D, 250 mg calcium, vitamins C, E, B6 and B12, folic acid and magnesium (one portion FortiFit, Nutricia with a total energy content per drink of only 150 kcal).
|Figure 1: Changes in parameters of DNA damage and antioxidant enzyme expression (Franzke. 2014).|
We should keep in mind, though, that (a) non-significant benefits were visible for the formamidopyrimidine DNA glycosylase (FPG) and the expression of superoxide dismutase and that (b) the actual benefits of protein supplements would have become visible only if the scientists had accessed the changes in body composition, as well.
- Franzke, B. et al. "The impact of six months strength training, nutritional supplementation or cognitive training on DNA damage in institutionalised elderly." Mutagenesis (2015):147–153.