Green Tea Maintains Antioxidative Defense Enzyme Activities and Protects Against Lipid Peroxidation in Rat Gastrocnemius Muscles After Aerobic Exercise

  • Chai, Young-Mi (Department of Food Science and Nutrition, Catholic University of Daegu) ;
  • Rhee, Soon-Jae (Department of Food Science and Nutrition, Catholic University of Daegu)
  • Published : 2003.12.01


This study investigated the effects of green tea on the muscle antioxidative defense system in the white & red gastrocnemius muscles of rats after aerobic exercise. Male Sprague-Dawley rats weighing 150 10 g were randomly assigned to a control group, non-exercise with green tea group (G group), and exercise training group. The exercise training group was then further classified as the training (T) group and training with green tea (TG) group, the latter of which was supplemented with green tea in the drinking water during the experimental period. The rats in the exercise training groups (T and TG) were subjected to aerobic exercise on a treadmill 30 min/day at a speed of 28 m/min (7% incline) 5 days/week, while the other groups (control and G group) were cage confined for 4 weeks. Thereafter, the rats were sacrificed with an injected overdose of pentobarbital just after running. In the white muscle, the xanthine oxidase (XOD) activities were 71 % higher in the T group compared to control group, whereas the TG group had the same activity as the control group. The XOD activities in the red gastrocnemius muscle exhibited the same tendency as in the white muscle. The superoxide dismutase (SOD) activity in the white muscle was lower in the T group compared with the control group, yet significantly higher in the TG group compared with the T group. The SOD activities in the red gastrocnemius muscle exhibited the same tendency as in the white gastrocnemius muscle. The glutathione peroxidase (GSHpx) activities in the white & red gastrocnemius muscles were 43 % lower in the T group compared with the control group, yet the activities in the TG group remained at control levels. The glutathione S-transferase (GST) activity in the white muscle was not significantly different among any of the three groups, but in the red gastrocnemius muscle, the TG group had the same activity as in the control group. The thiobarbituric acid reactive substance (TBARS) contents in the white & red gastrocnemius muscles were higher in the T group than in the control but the control and TG groups had the same concentrations of TBARS. In conclusion, the supplementation of green tea in rats subjected to aerobic exercise was found to reduce the peroxidation of muscle lipids by enhancing the antioxidative defense mechanism.


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