Amaranth can be beneficial to health and sports, with multiple applications owing to varied concentration of phytochemical; the concentration of these compounds depends on the part or by-product employed. For example, as a food supplement, amaranth oil (rich in squalene) can exert cardiovascular properties, while amaranth extract (rich in nitrites) can increase nitric oxide production (therefore improving endurance performance). On the other hand, as a functional ingredient, its gluten-free flours (containing fibre) can act as probiotics, whereas its proteins (with a peculiar amino acid profile) support muscle recovery. The few clinical results with athletic population suggest it can contribute to improved aerobic metabolism, but there is insufficient clinical data to draw any conclusion. Further research warrants elucidation of amaranth phytochemicals as promising ergogenic aids in sports by high-quality human clinical trials with both standardised products and ingredients in athletic population.
Part of the book: Nutritional Value of Amaranth