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Josephine Blagrave and Taylor Guy

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Tom Clifford, Eleanor J. Hayes, Jadine H. Scragg, Guy Taylor, Kieran Smith, Kelly A. Bowden Davies and Emma J. Stevenson

Purpose: This study examined whether a higher protein diet following strenuous exercise can alter markers of muscle damage and inflammation in older adults. Methods: Using a double-blind, independent group design, 10 males and eight females (age 57 ± 4 years; mass 72.3 ± 5.6 kg; height 1.7 ± 6.5 m) were supplied with a higher protein (2.50 g·kg−1·day−1) or moderate protein (1.25 g·kg−1·day−1) diet for 48 hr after 140 squats with 25% of their body mass. Maximal isometric voluntary contractions, muscle soreness, creatine kinase, Brief Assessment of Mood Adapted, and inflammatory markers were measured preexercise, and 24 hr and 48 hr postexercise. Results: The maximal isometric voluntary contractions decreased postexercise (p = .001, ηp2=.421), but did not differ between groups (p = .822, ηp2=.012). Muscle soreness peaked at 24 hr post in moderate protein (44 ± 30 mm) and 48 hr post in higher protein (70 ± 46 mm; p = .005; ηp2=.282); however, no group differences were found (p = .585; ηp2=.083). Monocytes and lymphocytes significantly decreased postexercise, and eosinophils increased 24 hr postexercise (p < 0.05), but neutrophils, creatine kinase, interleukin-6, C-reactive protein, monocyte chemotactic protein-1, and Brief Assessment of Mood Adapted were unchanged by exercise or the intervention (p > .05). Conclusion: In conclusion, 2.50 g·kg−1·day−1 of protein is not more effective than 1.25 g·kg−1·day−1 for attenuating indirect markers of muscle damage and inflammation following strenuous exercise in older adults.