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With the increasing number of people who participate in one form of exercise or the other, believing that it improves health and enhances professional sporting career, the question of its health benefit can only be answered with the knowledge of the metabolic changes that occur during exercise. This study therefore, was aimed at investigating the implications of physical exercise on some metabolic biomarkers, and to identify the changes that occur in subjects who undergo strenuous regular physical exercise in the tropics. Blood samples were collected from 86 male athletes and 100 male non-athletes aged between 22 and 30 years following established protocols. The athletes were at the peak of their training in preparation for a major sporting event and the blood samples were collected at rest and immediately after strenuous exercise sessions; while blood samples from the non-athletes were collected only at rest and served as control. The samples were prepared and used for the evaluation of some metabolic and oxidative stress markers. All experimental evaluations were done following well established methods. Result showed that serum concentrations of creatinine, urea, bilirubin, testosterone and cortisol all significantly increased in athletes after strenuous exercise. However, there was no statistical significant change in these biomarkers between athletes at rest and non-athletes. Also except glutathione reductase which significantly decreased in athletes after exercise, other oxidative stress markers assayed significantly increased in athletes after exercise; there was also no significant change between athletes at rest and non-athletes. From the result, this study concludes that strenuous exercise may increase oxidative stress in the cells, cause hemolysis or muscle damage and subsequent myoglobin degradation.
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