Hydrogen Gas as an Exotic Performance-Enhancing Agent: Challenges and Opportunities

Author(s): Sergej M. Ostojic; Current Pharmaceutical Design

Either administered as an inhalational gas, enteral hydrogen-rich water, or intravenous hydrogen-rich saline, H2 seems to favorably affect various exercise performance outcomes and biomarkers of exercise-associated fatigue, inflammation, and oxidative stress. Not all studies have shown corroborative effects, and it appears that the gold-standard protocol for applying H2 in the field of exercise science does not exist at the moment, with studies markedly differ in the dose of H2 administered, the duration of a treatment, and the source of hydrogen.

H2 is a newfangled and rather effective performance-enhancing agent yet its promising ergogenic potency has to be further validated and characterized in more well-controlled, appropriately sampled and long-term mechanistic trials. Also, appropriate regulation of hydrogen utilization in sport as an exotic medical gas may require distinctive legislative actions of relevant regulatory agencies in the future.


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