Physical Health, Nutrition Knowledge, Food Consumption, and Quality of Life in Female Collegiate Runners

Physical Health, Nutrition Knowledge, Food Consumption, and Quality of Life in Female Collegiate Runners
Research paper
Description: 
Collegiate athletes undergo a pre-participation examination, but it often does not analyze dietary habits, nutrition knowledge, or quality of life. The purpose of this study was to assess these factors in female collegiate runners. Twenty-eight track and field and cross country runners from a Division II University completed this study. Blood pressure, body composition, and fasting blood glucose and lipids were measured. Participants also completed the Diet History Questionnaire (DHQIII) food frequency questionnaire (FFQ), Nutrition for Sport Knowledge Questionnaire (NSKQ), and the World Health Organization Quality of Life survey (WHO QOLBREF). Fifty-seven percent of athletes’ fasting glucose was over 100mg/dL, 7.4% had LDL >100 mg/dL, 13% had triglycerides >150 mg/dL, and 50% had HDL <50 mg/dL. Overall nutrition knowledge was poor. The FFQ indicated that 67.9% of athletes did not meet the recommended vegetable intake and 89% did not meet the recommend grain intake. Twenty-seven percent of athletes met estimated energy needs, 10.7% consumed 6-10 g/kg of carbohydrate (often recommended for athletes training 2-3 hours per day), 64.3% consumed at least 1.2 g/kg of protein (often recommended for endurance athletes), and 46% met the RDA for iron. The mean WHO QOL-BREF scores (out of 100) were 60.4 ±11.85 for physical health, 66.0±9.33 for psychological well-being, 79.9±16.73 for social relationships, and 81.4±11.81 for their environment. This research demonstrated inadequate nutrition knowledge among female athletes, possibly contributing to a poor diet as evidenced by high fasting blood glucose and low carbohydrate and protein intake. This may contribute to the low perception of physical and psychological health, possibly due to relative energy deficiency in sport (RED-S).

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WHDL ID: 
WHDL-00015204
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