Background: Chronic intensive exercise is associated with a greater induction of oxidative stress and with an excess of endogenous advanced glycation end-products (AGEs). Curcumin can reduce the accumulation of AGEs in vitro and in animal models. We examined whether supplementation with curcumin and Boswellia serrata (BSE) gum resin for 3 months could affect plasma levels of markers of oxidative stress, inflammation, and glycation in healthy master cyclists.
Methods: Forty-seven healthy male athletes were randomly assigned to Group 1, consisting of 22 subjects given a Mediterranean diet (MD) alone (MD group), and Group 2 consisted of 25 subjects given a MD plus curcumin and BSE (curcumin/BSE group). Interleukin-6 (IL-6), tumor necrosis factor-α (TNFα), high-sensitivity c-reactive protein (hs-CRP), total AGE, soluble receptor for AGE (sRAGE), malondialdehyde (MDA), plasma phospholipid fatty acid (PPFA) composition, and non-esterified fatty acids (NEFA) were tested at baseline and after 12 weeks.
Results: sRAGE, NEFA, and MDA decreased significantly in both groups, while only the curcumin/BSE group showed a significant decline in total AGE. Only the changes in total AGE and MDA differed significantly between the curcumin/BSE and MD groups.
Conclusions: Our data suggest a positive effect of supplementation with curcumin and BSE on glycoxidation and lipid peroxidation in chronically exercising master athletes.
Keywords: advanced glycation end-products; curcumin; exercise; inflammation; oxidative stress.