Strength athletes may build up more muscle tissue by eating Brassica vegetables like broccoli, sprouts or cabbage daily. We base this wild speculation on a study by molecular biologists at the Second University of Naples, soon to be published in Age. According to this research, members of the cabbage family stimulate the development of mesenchymal stem cells.
Muscle tissue grows in two ways as a result of strength training: 1. the existing cells in the muscle fibres grow and 2. the number of muscle cells in the muscle fibres grows. The latter is called hyperplasia: training induces stem cells in the muscle fibres to develop into fully grown muscle cells. Hormones like IGF-1, and also supplements like NO-donors, enhance this process.
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