FEMALE COLLEGE SWIMMERS HAVE LOW NUTRIENT INTAKES
Battista, R. A., Dodge, C., & Foster, C. (2008). Changes during a competitive season in physical characteristics and caloric intake in female collegiate swimmers. ACSM 55th Annual Meeting Indianapolis, Presentation Number, 2155.
This study monitored body composition, bone mineral density, bone mineral content, and caloric intake in female collegiate swimmers (N = 17) over a competitive training season. Ss were measured twice (October, December) during the 2006/07 competitive season. Eight of the 17 swimmers were measured a third time (March) as they qualified for conference championships. DEXA was used to estimate body composition, bone mineral density, and bone mineral content. To determine caloric intake, a 24-hour dietary recall with questions, prompts, and food models was used with data entered into the ESHA Food Processor. An eating disorder questionnaire was administered post-season. Outcome variables included weight, fat mass, fat-free mass, bone mineral density, bone mineral content, total calories, energy intake, and percent calories from carbohydrates.
Weight, fat mass, bone mineral content, and bone mineral density significantly decreased while fat-free mass increased significantly. Additionally, total calories, energy intake, and percent calories from carbohydrates did not change between October and December. In the eight conference swimmers there were no significant differences in outcome variables from October, December, and March. Additionally, all swimmers showed nutrient intakes below recommended values for an athletic population.
Implication. Swim training positively influenced body composition from pre- to mid-season, despite the low nutrient intakes of the athletes. However, bone mineral content and bone mineral density decreased slightly, perhaps a result of the inadequate nutritional intake.
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