The studies from were conducted on a capsule supplement, CurraNZ, made from New Zealand blackcurrant extract and sold in the U.K.
The four-year program of sports performance research from the University of Chichester found:
- Subjects burn more fat: in short and long-duration cycling tests, participants increased fat burning by 15% and up to 27% at low and moderate cycling intensities.
- Ability to exercise to a higher intensity: participants had elevated lactate values, meaning they could exercise harder before tiring.
- Ability to run farther before reaching exhaustion: in high-intensity, intermittent running tests, participants increased their running distance by on average 10.6%, or 411m. Participants increased distance during sprints by up to 10.8%, with one in three athletes showing improvements of greater than 15%.
- Better maintained fastest maximal sprint times: in an intermittent shuttle test, designed to mimic the activity patterns of football and real game demands, athletes were better able to sustain their fastest running speeds, with reduced fatigue and less perceived effort.
These outcomes suggest blackcurrant supplementation could influence team sports outcomes in the latter stages of game play, noted Health Currancy Ltd, which markets CurraNZ. Blackcurrant fruit pigments, called anthocyanins, have been shown to increase blood flow up to 20% and act as potent antioxidants and anti-inflammatories, the company noted.
According to the University of Chichester, the studies were accepted for publication in the International Journal of Sport Nutrition and Exercise Metabolism and the European Journal of Applied Physiology.