Rehydration during exercise prevents the increase of homocysteine concentrations

Amino Acids. 2019 Feb;51(2):193-204. doi: 10.1007/s00726-018-2655-y. Epub 2018 Sep 27.


This study aimed to assess the effect of rehydration during and after acute aerobic submaximal exercise on total homocysteine (tHcy) concentrations and related parameters in physically active adult males. Twenty trained males (29.4 ± 7.9 years old) completed four exercise tests: two without rehydration during exercise (NH1 and NH2), one with rehydration during exercise using water (H1) and one with rehydration during exercise using an isotonic sports drink (H2). After finishing the exercise tests, subjects followed a rehydration protocol for 2 h. Serum tHcy, vitamin B12, folate, creatine and creatinine were analysed before, after and at 2, 6 and 24 h after exercise. Data were analysed with and without correcting for haemoconcentration to assess the changes in tHcy related. The methylenetetrahydrofolate reductase (MTHFR) 677TT genotype was also analysed. THcy (uncorrected by haemoconcentration) increased significantly after exercise (P < 0.05) in the NH1 and NH2 tests [mean increase ± SD: 1.55 ± 0.33 (15.18%) and 1.76 ± 0.25 (17.69%) µmol/L, respectively], while no significant differences were found in the H1 and H2 tests [mean increase: 0.65 (6.29%) and 0.90 (8.69%) μmol/L, respectively]. The increase was partly due to haemoconcentration and partly due to the metabolism underlying acute exercise. THcy concentrations recovered to baseline after 24 h in all tests. In conclusion, adequate rehydration during acute aerobic exercise using either water or a sports drink maintains tHcy concentrations at baseline and for up to 2 h after exercise in physically active male adults and prevents further increases when compared to no rehydration.

Keywords: Homocysteine; Hydration; Metabolism; Vitamins.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Creatine / blood
  • Creatinine / blood
  • Cross-Over Studies
  • Drinking Water*
  • Exercise / physiology*
  • Fluid Therapy*
  • Folic Acid / blood
  • Homocysteine / blood*
  • Humans
  • Hyperhomocysteinemia / prevention & control*
  • Isotonic Solutions
  • Male
  • Methylenetetrahydrofolate Reductase (NADPH2) / analysis
  • Vitamin B 12 / blood
  • Young Adult


  • Drinking Water
  • Isotonic Solutions
  • Homocysteine
  • Folic Acid
  • Creatinine
  • Methylenetetrahydrofolate Reductase (NADPH2)
  • Creatine
  • Vitamin B 12

Supplementary concepts

  • Homocysteinemia