Emergency medical doctor, David Haunschmidt (pictured above), is an accomplished ultra-runner based in New Zealand who follows evidence-based science in health and sports nutrition.
Here, David explains from an athlete's and doctor's point of view, why CurraNZ is 'spot on' for its efficacy and health value.
What led me to use CurraNZ?
I’m always on the lookout for ways to improve and optimise my health and performance. Daily training amongst busy shift-work often leaves less time for optimal exercise and recovery, leading me to explore other ways to naturally boost my potential.
Because of my medical background, I like to scrutinise the science of any physical or dietary adaption, applying the best available evidence to make informed decisions.
Any biological system is incredibly complex, with many cellular pre/during/post exercise mechanisms still poorly understood. There are so many factors at play that designing a study on the effects of any single food or supplement is extremely hard to do.
Great respect to CurraNZ for being involved with research, including gold standard double-blind trials with placebo pills. It is not easy to set up studies like this.
CurraNZ contain high levels of anthocyanins. These have powerful anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory effects, shown to have beneficial health effects1,2. The studies are small, but certainly point towards a net benefit in a number of important domains. The main benefits for endurance athletes:
- Reducing muscle soreness and fatigue, with one study showing lower levels of creatine kinase (a marker of muscle damage) after resistance training3.
- Improving recovery times3,4. Regular anthocyanins use showing subjective and objective markers of enhanced recovery.
- Improved performance. Again, a complex effect, thought to be primarily due to improved blood flow and an anti-oxidant ‘muscle priming’ action5,6,7,8. This will of course be linked to the above two effects: allowing you to perform better when feeling better.
This doesn’t touch on the other beneficial properties of New Zealand blackcurrants. These colourful little superfoods have many other beneficial effects outside of performance. A mantra of mine has always been to increase the amount of vibrant colours and natural foods in my diet. CurraNZ is spot-on for this.
The benefits in these studies have been shown for regular use, not one-off or sporadic anthocyanin ingestion.
I have got into the habit of taking two CurraNZ tablets per day, usually with my morning coffee.
Anecdotally, I have felt a positive change. I’m a big proponent of getting the basics right first. This includes: optimised sleep, recovery, healthy diet, adequate fuelling for hard sessions, cross-training, strength & mobility work.
As always, there is no quick fix, but these healthy colourful little supplements are a great tool to help on your health and fitness journey.
- Lyall KA, Hurst SM, Cooney J, Jensen D, Lo K, Hurst RD, Stevenson LM. Short-term blackcurrant extract consumption modulates exercise-induced oxidative stress and lipopolysaccharide-stimulated inflammatory responses. Am J Physiol Regul Integr Comp Physiol. 2009 Jul;297(1):R70-81.
- Strauss JA, Willems MET, Shepherd SO. New Zealand blackcurrant extract enhances fat oxidation during prolonged cycling in endurance-trained females. Eur J Appl Physiol. 2018 Jun;118(6):1265-1272.
- Consumption of New Zealand Blackcurrant Extract improves recovery from exercise-induced muscle damage in non-resistance trained men and women: A double-blind randomized trial, Nutrients, 2021.
- McLeay Y, Barnes MJ, Mundel T, Hurst SM, Hurst RD, Stannard SR. Effect of New Zealand blueberry consumption on recovery from eccentric exercise-induced muscle damage. J Int Soc Sports Nutr. 2012 Jul 11;9(1):19.
- Cook MD, Myers SD, Blacker SD, Willems ME. New Zealand blackcurrant extract improves cycling performance and fat oxidation in cyclists. Eur J Appl Physiol. 2015 Nov;115(11):2357-65.
- Murphy CA, Cook MD, Willems MET. Effect of New Zealand Blackcurrant Extract on Repeated Cycling Time Trial Performance. Sports (Basel). 2017 May 9;5(2):25.
- Yarahmadi M, Askari G, Kargarfard M, Ghiasvand R, Hoseini M, Mohamadi H, Asadi A. The effect of anthocyanin supplementation on body composition, exercise performance and muscle damage indices in athletes. Int J Prev Med. 2014 Dec;5(12):1594-600.