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Med Sci Sports Exerc. 2006 Feb;38(2):349-56.

Influence of performance level on dietary supplementation in elite Canadian athletes.

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  • 1Faculty of Kinesiology, Department of Biochemistry & Molecular Biology, University of Calgary, Calgary, Alberta, Canada.

Abstract

INTRODUCTION:

It is well documented that athletes report greater dietary supplement (DS) usage than nonathletes; however, limited data exist for Canadian athletes, especially relative to competitive performance levels.

PURPOSE:

This descriptive and analytical, cross-sectional research investigated DS practices and opinions, preferred means for DS education, and antidoping opinions among elite Canadian athletes competing at various performance levels.

METHODS:

Subjects completed a validated questionnaire by recall. Combined, 582 high-performance athletes (314 M, 268 F) between the ages of 11 and 42 yr (mean 19.96 +/- 3.91 yr) and representing 27 sports activities participated. Respondents were categorized into five competitive performance levels: provincial (68), national (101), North America (61), international or professional (89), and varsity (263).

RESULTS:

Overall, most (88.4%) reported taking one or more DS during the previous 6 months (mean 3.08 +/- 1.87 DS per user). From a total of 1555 DS declared, sport drinks (22.4%), sport bars (14.0%), multivitamins and minerals (13.5%), protein supplements (9.0%), and vitamin C (6.4%) were most frequently reported. Athletes at the highest performance level were significantly more likely to use protein supplements, to be advised by strength trainers regarding DS usage, to have a higher self-rating of their diet, to prefer individual interviews for DS educational purposes, to perceive greater awareness of antidoping legislation, and train more h.wk(-1). Furthermore, differences were observed for the types of DS reported and justifications for use.

CONCLUSION:

This dataset, the first of its kind in Canada, was generated with a validated and reliable questionnaire and has the potential to be extended nationally and internationally to provide greater insight into the patterns and opinions of elite athletes regarding supplementation and antidoping.

PMID:
16531906
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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