Flatwater kayaking requires upper-body muscle strength and a lean body composition. This case study describes a nutrition intervention with a 19-year-old male elite sprint kayaker to increase muscle mass and improve recovery posttraining. Before the intervention, average daily energy intake was 13.6 ± 2.5 MJ (M ± SD; protein, 1.8 g/kg; carbohydrate, 3.6 g/kg), and the athlete was unable to eat sufficient food to meet the energy demands of training. During the 18-month intervention period, the athlete’s daily energy intake increased to 22.1 ± 3.8 MJ (protein, 3.2 g/kg; carbohydrate, 7.7 g/kg) by including milk-based drinks pre- and posttraining and before bed and an additional carbohydrate-based snack midmorning. This simple dietary intervention, along with a structured strength and conditioning program, resulted in an increase of 10 kg body mass with minimal change in body fat percentage. Adequate vitamin D status was maintained without the need for supplementation during the intervention period. In addition, the athlete reported the milk-based drinks and carbohydrate snacks were easy to consume, and no adverse side effects were experienced. This was the first time the athlete was able to maintain weight during intensive phases of the training cycle.
Valéria Cristina Provenza Paschoal and Olga Maria Silverio Amancio
The purpose of this study was to evaluate the body composition, dietary intake, use of nutritional supplements, and biochemical status of 8 Brazilian male elite swimmers, aged 18–21 years, participants at a national swimming competition. Data from the athletes were obtained through a 4-day food record, a fasting blood sample, and anthropometric measurements. The anthropometric results showed that body composition was compatible with sport category. The dietary assessment showed an adequate ingestion of calories, vitamins, and mineral, with the exception of calcium, for which only half of the sample reached the recommendation. The results also indicated low carbohydrate and high protein and cholesterol intakes. Of the swimmers, 62.5% and 25% consumed synthetic aminoacids and antioxidants supplements, respectively. The biochemical indices of the nutritional status were within normal limits in all swimmers, with the exception of creatine-kinase, which was above the recommended level, indicating muscle degradation probably due to poor carbohydrate intake. In conclusion, the results suggest the importance of nutritional education to promote a balanced intake, provide all nutrients in optimal amounts, inhibit unnecessary ingestion of nutritional supplements, maintain ideal performance, and improve the swimmers’ health status.
Christina Tsitsimpikou, Nastasia Chrisostomou, Peter Papalexis, Konstantinos Tsarouhas, Aristidis Tsatsakis and Athanasios Jamurtas
Although the use of nutritional supplements by professional athletes and the benefits thereof have been extensively studied, information on recreational athletes’ use of supplements is limited. This study investigated the consumption of nutritional supplements, source of information and supply of supplements, and level of awareness with regard to the relevant legislation among individuals who undertake regular exercise in Athens, Greece. A closed-ended, anonymous questionnaire was answered by 329 subjects (180 men, 149 women), age 30.6 ± 12.1 yr, from 11 randomly selected gym centers. Preparations declared as anabolic agents by the users were submitted to a gas chromatographic analyzer coupled to a mass spectrometric detector. Consumption of nutritional supplements was reported by 41% of the study population, with proteins/amino acids and vitamins being the most popular. Age (r = .456, p = .035), sex (χ2 = 14.1, df = 1, p < .001), level of education (χ2 = 14.1, df = 3, p < .001), and profession (χ2 = 11.4, df = 4, p = .022) were associated with the subjects’ decision to consume nutritional supplements. Most (67.1%) purchased products from health food stores. Only 17.1% had consulted a physician or nutritionist, and one third were aware of the relevant legislation. Two preparations were detected containing synthetic anabolic steroids not stated on the label. In conclusion, use of nutritional supplements was common among recreational athletes in Athens, Greece. A low level of awareness and low involvement of health care professionals as sources of information and supply were observed.
This study assessed the nutrient intake and eating behavior in Norwegian female elite athletes suffering from eating disorders (ED) who met the criteria for anorexia nervosa (AN), anorexia athletica (AA), or bulimia nervosa (BN). The subjects included 7 AN, 43 AA, 42 BN, and 30 controls. Three-day and 24-hr food records were used to assess energy and nutrient intake. Results revealed that a significant number of AN and AA athletes have diets too low in energy and nutrients, the mean intake for energy and CHO being lower than recommended for active females. A significant number did not reach the protein level recommended for athletes. In addition, there were low intakes of several micronutrients, most notably calcium, vitamin D, and iron. The energy and nutritional inadequacy, combined with the use of purging, are of major concern since the athletes in this study were relatively young. It is unknown whether the abnormal eating pattern is a consequence of ED or is typical of top level athletes.
Richard R. Suminski, Robert J. Robertson, Fredric L. Goss, Silva Arslanian, Jie Kang, Sergio DaSilva, Alan C. Utter and Kenneth F. Metz
Sixteen men completed four trials at random as follows: (Trial A) performance of a single bout of resistance exercise preceded by placebo ingestion (vitamin C); (Trial B) ingestion of 1,500 mg L-arginine and 1,500 mg L-lysine, immediately followed by exercise as in Trial A; (Trial C) ingestion of amino acids as in Trial B and no exercise; (Trial D) placebo ingestion and no exercise. Growth hormone (GH) concentrations were higher at 30,60, and 90 min during the exercise trials (A and B) compared with the resting trials (C and D) (p < .05). No differences were noted in [GH] between the exercise trials. [GH] was significantly elevated during resting conditions 60 min after amino acid ingestion compared with the placebo trial. It was concluded that ingestion of 1,500 mg arginine and 1,500 mg ly sine immediately before resistance exercise does not alter exercise-induced changes in [GH] in young men. However, when the same amino acid mixture is ingested under basal conditions, the acute secretion of GH is increased.
Kathryn Froiland, Wanda Koszewski, Joshua Hingst and Lisa Kopecky
A survey was conducted to examine the source of information and usage of nutritional supplements in 115 male and 88 female varsity athletes at a Division I university. The survey asked each athlete to define supplement, and report supplement use and type, source of information, and reasons for use. Supplement use frequencies were determined, and comparisons were made between gender and sport. Eighty-nine percent of the subjects had or were currently using nutritional supplements. Many athletes did not consider sports drinks and calorie replacement products as supplements. Females were more likely to take calcium and multivitamins, and males had significant intake for ginseng, amino acids, glutamine, hydroxy-methyl-buterate (HMB), weight gainers, whey protein, and Juven. The most frequently used supplements overall were energy drinks (73%), calorie replacement products of all types (61.4%), multivitamin (47.3%), creatine (37.2%), and vitamin C (32.4%). There was also significant supplement use noted per sport. Females were more likely to obtain information from family members regarding supplementation, and males from a store nutritionist, fellow athletes, friends, or a coach. Female athletes were more likely to take supplements for their health or because of an inadequate diet, while men reported taking supplements to improve speed and agility, strength and power, or for weight/muscle gain.
Susan Heaney, Helen O’Connor, Janelle Gifford and Geraldine Naughton
This study aimed to compare strategies for assessing nutritional adequacy in the dietary intake of elite female athletes.
Dietary intake was assessed using an adapted food-frequency questionnaire in 72 elite female athletes from a variety of sports. Nutritional adequacy was evaluated and compared using mean intake; the proportion of participants with intakes below Australian nutrient reference values (NRV), U.S. military dietary reference intakes (MDRI), and current sports nutrition recommendations; and probability estimates of nutrient inadequacy.
Mean energy intake was 10,551 ± 3,836 kJ/day with macronutrient distribution 18% protein, 31% fat, and 46% carbohydrate, consistent with Australian acceptable macronutrient distribution ranges. Mean protein intake (1.6 g · kg−1 · d−1) was consistent with (>1.2 g · kg−1 · d−1), and carbohydrate intake (4.5 g · kg−1 · d−1), below, current sports nutrition recommendations (>5 g · kg−1 · d−1), with 30% and 65% of individuals not meeting these levels, respectively. Mean micronutrient intake met the relevant NRV and MDRI except for vitamin D and folate. A proportion of participants failed to meet the estimated average requirement for folate (48%), calcium (24%), magnesium (19%), and iron (4%). Probability estimates of inadequacy identified intake of folate (44%), calcium (22%), iron (19%), and magnesium (15%) as inadequate.
Interpretation of dietary adequacy is complex and varies depending on whether the mean, proportion of participants below the relevant NRV, or statistical probability estimate of inadequacy is used. Further research on methods to determine dietary adequacy in athlete populations is required.
Kristin Wiens, Kelly Anne Erdman, Megan Stadnyk and Jill A. Parnell
To evaluate dietary supplement use in young Canadian athletes, their motivation for consuming supplements, and their sources of information.
A questionnaire tested for content validity and reliability was administered to 567 athletes between the ages of 11 and 25 years from the Canadian athletic community in face-to-face meetings. Demographics and sport variables were analyzed using descriptive statistics. Fisher’s exact tests were used to examine dietary supplementation patterns and sources of information regarding dietary supplement use between categories of gender, age, sport type, and competition level.
Ninety-eight percent of athletes were taking at least one dietary supplement. Males were more likely to consume protein powder, energy drinks, recovery drinks, branched chain amino acids, beta-alanine, and glutamine (p < .01); supplements typically associated with increased muscle mass. Athletes 11–17 years old focused on vitamin and mineral supplements; whereas, athletes 18–25 years old focused on purported ergogenic supplements. Strength training athletes were more likely to consume creatine, glutamine, and protein powders (p < .02). Reasons for supplement use included to stay healthy, increase energy, immune system, recovery, and overall performance. Primary sources of information were family and friends, coaches, and athletic trainers; with 48% of athletes having met with a dietitian. Preferred means of education included individual consultations, presentations, and the internet.
The majority of young athletes are using dietary supplements with the belief they will improve performance and health; however, may not always have reliable information. Educational programs using individual consultations and electronic media are recommended for this demographic.
Jongkyu Kim, Seung-ki Kang, Han-sang Jung, Yoon-suck Chun, Jennifer Trilk and Seung Ho Jung
Athletes report frequent use of various dietary supplements (DSs). However, no study has examined DS use and antidoping knowledge in Korean Olympians. The objectives of this study were to obtain information about Korean Olympians’ DS use during the training period for the Beijing 2008 Summer Olympic Games and immediately before their Olympic events, to obtain DS-intake reasons and DS providers, and to obtain information on athletes’ doping education, knowledge, and educators. Korean Olympians completed 2 questionnaires 1 wk before the opening and within 1 wk after the closing of the Beijing 2008 Summer Olympic Games. Results showed that 79% of male and 82% of female Olympians take more than 1 DS during the training period and that vitamins and Oriental supplements are the 2 top-ranked DSs. Reasons for DS use were to improve recovery ability (66%) and muscle performance (22%), and sources of obtaining DSs were parents (36%) and coaches (35%). Furthermore, 79% of Korean Olympians reported receiving regular education on antidoping regulations from Olympic-sponsored education classes (64%) and coaches (15%). In conclusion, this study was the first to examine DS use and antidoping-related information in Korean Olympians. Because some herbal products contain substances banned by the World Anti-Doping Agency, athletes should be cautious in using mixed Oriental supplements.
Souzana K. Papadopoulou, Sophia D. Papadopoulou and George K. Gallos
Adequate nutrition is critically important for the achievement of the adolescent athlete’s optimal performance. The purpose of the present study was to evaluate the adequacy of macro- and micro-nutrients in the adolescent Greek female volleyball players’ diet. The subjects of the study consisted of 16 players who were members of the Junior National Team (NP) and 49 players who participated in the Junior National Championship (CP). Dietary intake was assessed using a 3-day food record. Protein intake (16.0 ± 4.9% of total energy intake) was satisfactory, whereas fat consumption (37.5 ± 11.1%) was above recommended values and at the expense of carbohydrate intake (45.9 ± 12.5%). There were no significant differences between NP and CP concerning the intake of macronutrients, except for the fat intake (when this is expressed in grams per day and grams per kilogram of body weight and the saturated fat intake, which were both higher in NP compared to CP players (p < .05). The mean energy intake was 2013 ± 971 and 1529 ± 675 kcal for NP and CP, respectively (p < .05). NP, in particular, consumed fat and especially saturated fat in order to meet their energy needs. As for micronutrients, the volleyball players fell short of meeting the RDA values for calcium, iron, folk acid, magnesium, zinc, and vitamins A, B1, B2, and B6. There was no difference between NP and CP in micronutrient intake. In conclusion, subjects in the current study lacked proper nutrition in terms of quantity and quality.