In order to counter the side effects of micro gravity, scientists (and engineers) are going to have to come up with creative ways to maintain body strength, especially if a future space traveler wants to set foot upon another world.
While settlers living on planets (and large moons) could easily wear gravity suits in order to ensure that they make it back to Earth, space travelers may have to settle for medication to ease their atrophy woes.
(Science Daily) Taking daily recommended dosages of ibuprofen and acetaminophen caused a substantially greater increase over placebo in the amount of quadriceps muscle mass and muscle strength gained during three months of regular weight lifting, in a study by physiologists at the Human Performance Laboratory, Ball State University. [...]
Over three months, says Dr. Trappe, the chronic consumption of ibuprofen or acetaminophen during resistance training appears to have induced intramuscular changes that enhance the metabolic response to resistance exercise, allowing the body to add substantially more new protein to muscle.
Doctors are already working on ways to counter bone loss, which may be good news for future explorers intending upon making long voyages in order to reach distant planets.
While an orbital space station (Bigelow style) would probably be a wiser route to take, this new drug may be helpful towards future colonists prefering to live upon "gravity-lite" star ships and asteroids.
Want more space geek news? Then subscribe below via email, RSS or twitter for free updates! Prefer another service? How about via RSS or follow Colony Worlds on Twitter!