Effects of vitamin E supplementation on recovery from repeated bouts of resistance exercise

J Strength Cond Res. 2003 Nov;17(4):801-9. doi: 10.1519/1533-4287(2003)017<0801:eoveso>2.0.co;2.


The purpose of this study was to examine the effects of vitamin E (VE) supplementation (1200 IU/day) on recovery responses to repeated bouts of resistance exercise. Non-resistance trained men were assigned to supplement with VE (n = 9) or placebo (PL; n = 9) for 3 weeks and then perform 3 resistance exercise sessions separated by 3 days of recovery (EX-1, EX-2, and EX-3). Performance was assessed at EX-1, EX-2, and EX-3. Fasting morning blood samples and perceived muscle soreness were obtained before EX-1 and for 10 consecutive days. Muscle soreness peaked after EX-1 and gradually returned to baseline values by day 6. Lower and upper body maximal strength and explosive power were significantly (p < or = 0.05) decreased at EX-2 and EX-3 (approximately 10%). Plasma malondialdehyde (MDA) was significantly elevated on days 7 and 8. There were no significant differences between VE and PL in muscle soreness, performance measures, or plasma MDA. Creatine kinase (CK) area under the curve from day 1 to day 10 was significantly greater for VE because of a nearly 2-fold greater increase in CK after EX-1 in VE, compared with PL (404 +/- 146 and 214 +/- 179 U/L, respectively). VE supplementation was not effective at attenuating putative markers of membrane damage, oxidative stress, and performance decrements after repeated bouts of whole-body concentric/eccentric resistance exercise.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Randomized Controlled Trial

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Analysis of Variance
  • Antioxidants / therapeutic use*
  • Creatine Kinase / blood
  • Dietary Supplements*
  • Double-Blind Method
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Malondialdehyde / blood
  • Matched-Pair Analysis
  • Muscle, Skeletal / drug effects
  • Pain / prevention & control
  • Vitamin E / therapeutic use*
  • Weight Lifting / physiology*


  • Antioxidants
  • Vitamin E
  • Malondialdehyde
  • Creatine Kinase