WITH marathon season well and truly upon us, it’s a good time to talk about recovery – and how blackcurrants can really benefit a structured training program.
Depending on your training plan, mileage will be increasing as the ‘big day’ approaches. With mileage comes muscle soreness, which can be an ever-present and unwelcome companion arising from fatigued muscles.
An antioxidant product can really support your ability to cope with heavy training and here we outline why blackcurrants deliver this – and more – for muscle recovery.
In fact, we know CurraNZ is so effective, it comes with a no-quibble money-back guarantee for muscle recovery!
Antioxidants for recovery – what’s the difference between tart cherries and blackcurrants?
Tart cherry products have risen to prominence as recovery products and gained acceptance in sport for accelerating muscle recovery.
So, what’s the difference between using New Zealand blackcurrant and cherry? For one thing - there's a gulf of difference in the anthocyanin content of the fruit, as illustrated (left) in the table.
We’ve mentioned anthocyanins before – they’re the bioactive fruit pigments that deliver the ‘good stuff’ for their health and fitness benefits in both fruits.
So, here's the rub: The dominant anthocyanin in blackcurrant, which isn’t present in cherry, is regarded as the most potent antioxidant for reducing oxidative stress – and that’s of the 500 anthocyanins present in nature. Its antioxidant action is one of several ways in which blackcurrant protects cells from exercise-induced oxidative stress and aids recovery.
Sleep and motivation
Cherries have a very different anthocyanin profile to blackcurrants - and one of their differentiations is that they help promote sleep.
Blackcurrant, on the other hand, helps promote mood and motivation to exercise (yes, it’s been scientifically proven!), but has no effect on slumber – you’ll just have to rely that day's training session to tire you out!
Out on their own – the distinguishing benefits of blackcurrants:
Blackcurrants are prized for their effect on blood flow – we’ve seen increases of up to 35% in our studies - and that’s a huge bonus if you can send more blood to tissues in need of repair.
Plus, more blood flow means faster clearance of lactate, a by-product arising from muscle fatigue.
Boot-straps the immune system
Blackcurrants are also known to boost the immune system, which is important during blocks of hard training when the body is more vulnerable to colds and infections. Remember, staying well is absolutely key to sticking to your training plan!
Watch the sugar content
Blackcurrants are a low-sugar superfruit, with just 1.2 calories per capsule of CurraNZ, which is concentrated blackcurrant.
If you’re watching your sugar, beware that the more popular formats of cherry products in juice/shot form contain high amounts of carbohydrate that go close to blowing out your recommended daily sugar intake - in one dose!
How much to use?
Blackcurrants are highly effective for recovery when just used around training days (take two hours before exercise), but daily use around marathon training will deliver better results.
One capsule, containing the equivalent of 85 berries, is sufficient for those weighing up to 75kg – over this, increase to two capsules.
On marathon day, dose on two capsules before the race and again before bed to really accelerate your muscle recovery.
To give CurraNZ a trial, backed by our money-back guarantee: