ENDURANCE ATHLETES MOSTLY CONSUME ADEQUATE AMOUNTS OF SUPPLEMENTAL NUTRIENTS

Helle, C., Bjerkan, K., Halvor, T., Holm, A., & Trygg, K. U. (2008). Micronutrient intake among national team endurance athletes - Nutritional consequences of extended dietary supplement use. ACSM 55th Annual Meeting Indianapolis. Presentation number 1951.

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This study evaluated micronutrient intake from the diet and dietary supplement use among Norwegian National Team endurance athletes (M = 61; F = 23), and compared their intake to the Nordic Nutrition Recommendations. Diet and supplement use was logged by 7-day weighed food records. Micronutrient intakes were calculated by a computerized nutrient data base. The micronutrient content of the reported supplements was obtained from the producers. Gender comparisons and correlations were made performed.

Ssí dietary micronutrient intake were 111-249% of Nordic Nutrition Recommendations except for vitamin D. Many Ss (79%) did not meet Nordic Nutrition Recommendations for vitamin D in their diet. The dietary iron intake was lower than Nordic Nutrition Recommendations for 39% of females, but not for males. The prevalence of supplement use was 82%, and similar among the genders. The supplements most frequently used were multivitamins (73%), fatty acids (68%), and vitamin C (35%). Among the Ss using supplements, the micronutrient intake in their diet and supplements together were 135-391% of Nordic Nutrition Recommendations. Twenty two percent of the Ss and 10% of the females did not meet Nordic Nutrition Recommendations for vitamin D and iron, respectively, from diet and supplements together. Thirty six percent and 20% of the supplement users exceeded the Upper Levels of Average Daily Intake for zinc and vitamin A respectively.

Implication. Most endurance athletes meet the recommendations for all micronutrients except vitamin D and iron (in females) in their diet. The extended use of supplements supported almost all athletes meeting Nordic Nutrition Recommendations for all micronutrients, but many Ss exceeded the Upper Levels for several micronutrients. The consequences of extended high intakes of some micronutrients may be detrimental to the athletesí performance and health.

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