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Richard B. Kreider, Robert Klesges, Karen Harmon, Pamela Grindstaff, Leigh Ramsey, Daryll Bullen, Larry Wood, Yuhua Li and Anthony Almada

This study examined the effects of ingesting nutritional supplements designed to promote lean tissue accretion on body composition alterations during resistance training. Twenty-eight resistance-trained males blindly supplemented their diets with maltodextrin (M), Gainers Fuel® 1000 (GF), or Phosphagain™ (P). No significant differences were observed in absolute or relative total body water among groups. Energy intake and body weight significantly increased in all groups combined throughout the study with no group or interaction differences observed. Dual energy x-ray absorptiometry-determined body mass significantly increased in each group throughout the study with significantly greater gains observed in the GF and P groups. Lean tissue mass (excluding bone) gain was significantly greater in the P group, while fat mass and percent body fat were significantly increased in the GF group. Results indicate that total body weight significantly increased in each group and that P supplementation resulted in significantly greater gains in lean tissue mass during resistance training.

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Tanja Hechler, Elizabeth Rieger, Stephen Touyz, Pierre Beumont, Guy Plasqui and Klaas Westerterp

The study aimed to compare differences in physical activity, the relationship between physical activity and body composition, and seasonal variation in physical activity in outpatients with anorexia nervosa (AN) and healthy controls. Physical activity (CM-AMT) and time spent in different intensities of 10 female individuals with AN and 15 female controls was assessed across three seasons along with the percentage body fat. The two groups did not differ in their physical activity and both demonstrated seasonal variation. The percentage body fat of individuals with AN, but not that of the controls, was negatively related to CM-AMT and time spent in low-moderate intesnity acitivy (LMI). Seasonal variation in physical activity emerged with increases in engagement in LMI during the summer period for both groups. Possible interpretations of the finding that decreased physical activity was related to a normalization of percentage body fat in the individuals with AN are discussed and implications for treatment are highlighted.

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Claudia D’Alessandro, Ester Morelli, Irene Evangelisti, Fabio Galetta, Ferdinando Franzoni, Donatella Lazzeri, Marina Piazza and Adamasco Cupisti

The aim of this study was to investigate the body composition and dietary intake of competitive club-level rhythmic gymnasts, who represent the larger cohort of the sport’s practitioners. Fifty-five rhythmic gymnasts and 55 nonathlete females (13–19 years of age) were seen individually to collect a dietary recall and to take anthropometric data and bioelectric-impedance analysis. Gymnasts had lower body-mass index and lesser skinfold thickness, although middle arm-muscle circumference was similar in the 2 groups. Gymnasts had lower body-fat measures but normal levels of fat-free mass (FFM) and body-cellular mass. Gymnasts had better dietary habits than the age-matched controls. Low levels of calcium, phosphorous, iron, and zinc and a disparity between reported energy intake and estimated energy requirement were observed in both groups.

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Kate Lambourne, Richard Washburn, Jaehoon Lee, Jessica L. Betts, David Thomas, Bryan Smith, Cheryl Gibson, Debra Kay Sullivan and Joseph Donnelly

Fluid milk consumed in conjunction with resistance training (RT) provides additional protein and calcium, which may enhance the effect of RT on body composition. However, the literature on this topic is inconsistent with limited data in adolescents. Therefore, we examined the effects of a supervised RT program (6 mo, 3 d/wk, 7 exercises, 40–85% 1-repetition maximum) with daily milk supplementation (24 oz/day, one 16-oz dose immediately post-RT) on weight, fat mass (FM), and fat-free mass (FFM) assessed via dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry (baseline, 3 mo, 6 mo) in a sample of middle-school students who were randomly assigned to 1 of 3 supplement groups: milk, isocaloric carbohydrate (100% fruit juice), or water (control). Thirty-nine boys and 69 girls (mean age = 13.6 yr, mean BMI percentile = 85th) completed the study: milk n = 36, juice n = 34, water n = 38. The results showed no significant differences between groups for change in body weight (milk = 3.4 ± 3.7 kg, juice = 4.2 ± 3.1 kg, water = 2.3 ± 2.9 kg), FM (milk = 1.1 ± 2.8 kg, juice = 1.6 ± 2.5 kg, water = 0.4 ± 3.6 kg), or FFM (milk = 2.2 ± 1.9 kg, juice = 2.7 ± 1.9 kg, water = 1.7 ± 2.9 kg) over 6 mo. FFM accounted for a high proportion of the increased weight (milk = 62%, juice = 64%, water = 74%). These results from a sample of predominantly overweight adolescents do not support the hypothesis that RT with milk supplementation enhances changes in body composition compared with RT alone.

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Paul J. Cribb, Andrew D. Williams, Michael F. Carey and Alan Hayes

Different dietary proteins affect whole body protein anabolism and accretion and therefore, have the potential to influence results obtained from resistance training. This study examined the effects of supplementation with two proteins, hydrolyzed whey isolate (WI) and casein (C), on strength, body composition, and plasma glutamine levels during a 10 wk, supervised resistance training program. In a double-blind protocol, 13 male, recreational bodybuilders supplemented their normal diet with either WI or C (1.5 gm/kg body wt/d) for the duration of the program. Strength was assessed by 1-RM in three exercises (barbell bench press, squat, and cable pull-down). Body composition was assessed by dual energy X-ray absorptiometry. Plasma glutamine levels were determined by the enzymatic method with spectrophotometric detection. All assessments occurred in the week before and the week following 10 wk of training. Plasma glutamine levels did not change in either supplement group following the intervention. The WI group achieved a significantly greater gain (P < 0.01) in lean mass than the C group (5.0 ± 0.3 vs. 0.8 ± 0.4 kg for WI and C, respectively) and a significant (P < 0.05) change in fat mass (−1.5 ± 0.5 kg) compared to the C group (+0.2 ± 0.3 kg). The WI group also achieved significantly greater (P < 0.05) improvements in strength compared to the C group in each assessment of strength. When the strength changes were expressed relative to body weight, the WI group still achieved significantly greater (P < 0.05) improvements in strength compared to the C group.

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J. David Branch

Background: Creatine supplementation (CS) has been reported to increase body mass and improve performance in high-intensity, short-duration exercise tasks. Research on CS, most of which has come into existence since 1994, has been the focus of several qualitative reviews, but only one meta-analysis, which was conducted with a limited number of studies. Purpose: This study compared the effects of CS on effect size (ES) for body composition (BC) variables (mass and lean body mass), duration and intensity (≤30 s, [ATP-PCr = A]; 30–150 s [glycolysis = G]; >150 s, [oxidative phosphorylation = O]) of the exercise task, type of exercise task (single, repetitive, laboratory, field, upper-body, lower-body), CS duration (loading, maintenance), and subject characteristics (gender, training status). Methods: A search of MEDLINE and SPORTDiscus using the phrase “creatine supplementation” revealed 96 English-language, peer-reviewed papers (100 studies), which included randomized group formation, a placebo control, and human subjects who were blinded to treatments. ES was calculated for each body composition and performance variable. Results: Small, but significant (ES > 0, p ≤ .05) ES were reported for BC (n = 163, mean ± SE = 0.17 ± 0.03), ATP-PCr (n = 17, 0.24 ± 0.02), G (n = 135, 0.19 ± 0.05), and O (n = 69, 0.20 ± 0.07). ES was greater for change in BC following a loading-only CS regimen (0.26 ± 0.03, p = .0003) compared to a maintenance regimen (0.04 ± 0.05), for repetitive-bout (0.25 ± 0.03, p = .028) compared to single-bout (0.18 ± 0.02) exercise, and for upper-body exercise (0.42 ± 0.07, p < .0001) compared to lower (0.21 ± 0.02) and total body (0.13 ± 0.04) exercise. ES for laboratory-based tasks (e.g., isometric/isotonic/isokinetic exercise, 0.25 ± 0.02) were greater (p = .014) than those observed for field-based tasks (e.g., running, swimming, 0.14 ± 0.04). There were no differences in BC or performance ES between males and females or between trained and untrained subjects. Conclusion: ES was greater for changes in lean body mass following short-term CS, repetitive-bout laboratory-based exercise tasks ≤ 30 s (e.g., isometric, isokinetic, and isotonic resistance exercise), and upper-body exercise. CS does not appear to be effective in improving running and swimming performance. There is no evidence in the literature of an effect of gender or training status on ES following CS.

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Melinda M. Manore

Weight-loss supplements typically fall into 1 of 4 categories depending on their hypothesized mechanism of action: products that block the absorption of fat or carbohydrate, stimulants that increase thermogenesis, products that change metabolism and improve body composition, and products that suppress appetite or give a sense of fullness. Each category is reviewed, and an overview of the current science related to their effectiveness is presented. While some weight-loss supplements produce modest effects (<2 kg weight loss), many have either no or few randomized clinical trials examining their effectiveness. A number of factors confound research results associated with the efficacy of weight-loss supplements, such as small sample sizes, short intervention periods, little or no follow-up, and whether the supplement is given in combination with an energy-restricted diet or increased exercise expenditure. There is no strong research evidence indicating that a specific supplement will produce significant weight loss (>2 kg), especially in the long term. Some foods or supplements such as green tea, fiber, and calcium supplements or dairy products may complement a healthy lifestyle to produce small weight losses or prevent weight gain over time. Weight-loss supplements containing metabolic stimulants (e.g., caffeine, ephedra, synephrine) are most likely to produce adverse side effects and should be avoided.

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Marta Arroyo, José Manue González-de-Suso, Celia Sanchez, Laura Ansotegui and Ana M. Rocandio

The purpose of this study was to evaluate body composition and body image (perception and satisfaction) in a group of young elite soccer players and to compare the data with those of a control group (age and BMI matched). Participants were 56 volunteer males whose mean age and BMI were 19.6 (SD 1.3) years and 23.3 (SD 1.1) kg/m2, respectively. Results showed that soccer players have a higher lean mass and lower fat mass than controls. Moreover, body perception (difference between current and actual image) was more accurate in controls than in soccer players, and the results suggest a tendency for soccer players to aspire to have more muscle mass and body fat. Soccer players perceived an ideal image with significantly higher body-fat percentage than their current and actual images. There were no body-dissatisfaction differences between groups, however. Although the results are necessarily limited by the small sample size, the findings should be of interest to coaches of young elite soccer teams.

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Felipe Fossati Reichert, Jonathan Charles Kingdom Wells, Ulf Ekelund, Ana Maria Baptista Menezes, Cesar Gomes Victora and Pedro C. Hallal

Background:

Physical activity may influence both fat and lean body mass. This study investigated the association between physical activity in children between the ages of 11 and 13 years and both fat and lean mass.

Methods:

A subsample of the 1993 Pelotas (Brazil) Birth Cohort was visited in 2004–2005 and 2006–2007. Physical activity was estimated through standardized questionnaires. Body composition (ie, fat and lean mass) was measured using deuterium dilution. Those with moderate-to-vigorous activity greater than 420 min/wk were classified as active, and physical activity trajectory was defined as being above or below the cutoff at each visit.

Results:

Four hundred eighty-eight adolescents (51.8% boys) were evaluated. The mean difference in fat mass in boys and girls who reported ≥ 420 min/wk of physical activity in both visits compared with those who were consistently inactive was –4.8 kg (P ≤ .001). There was an inverse association between physical activity and fat mass among boys in both crude and confounder-adjusted analyses, whereas for girls, the association was evident only in the crude analysis. There was no significant association between physical activity and lean mass.

Conclusion:

Physical activity may contribute to tackling the growing epidemic of adolescent obesity in low- and middle-income countries.

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Stephan P. Clancy, Priscilla M. Clarkson, Michael E. DeCheke, Kazunori Nosaka, Patty S. Freedson, John J. Cunningham and Bruce Valentine

The effects of 9 weeks of daily chromium supplementation (200μg Cr as picolinate) were investigated in a double-blind design in football players during spring training. Testing was done pre-, mid-, and postsupplementation on the following criterion measures: urinary chromium excretion, girth and skinfold measures, percent body fat and lean body mass, and isometric and dynamic strength. With the exception of 2 variables (of 65 variables analyzed), no significant group by trials interactions were found (based on a repeated measures ANOVA). The two exceptions were unrelated and inconsequential. For 27 of the 38 subjects, average urinary chromium loss at pre was 0.36 μg/24 hr, whereas it was undetectable (< 0.1 μg/24 hr) for 10 subjects and excessive in 1 subject (2.4 μg/24 hr). Subjects receiving chromium supplements demonstrated urinary chromium losses five times greater than those in the placebo group at mid and post. Chromium picolinate supplementation was ineffective in bringing about changes in body composition or strength during a program of intensive weight-lifting training.