LEVELS OF PROTEIN INTAKE AND PREVALENCE OF SUPPLEMENT USE AMONG MALE SPORT STUDENT GYM USERS
University of Wales Institute Cardiff
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The breakdown of proteins into amino acids creates a positive nitrogen balance and anabolic state, which is crucial for muscle repair and growth. Individuals who exercise require larger amounts of protein, due to the increased rate of protein synthesis brought on by the exercise stimulus. Supplements are a popular source of protein, consisting of hydrolysed proteins which are broken down amino acids, allowing for quicker absorption by the muscles post-exercise. However, exercisers may not need to supplement their diet with protein shakes due to their diets already being rich in protein. The aim of the study was to discover if the participants consumed too much protein and the prevalence of which they supplemented their diet. A total of forty participants (Mean ±SD: age, 20.95 ±1.04; height, 179.16 ± 5.36; weight, 84.52 ±11.27) completed a seven day food diary to record their diet and supplement use. Participants also completed an exercise profile to highlight their frequency of gym use and also the intensity/type of exercise they completed. The food diaries were analysed using CompEat Pro, version 5.8.0 (Nutrition Systems, Banbury UK). Results showed that 80% of participants consumed in excess of 110% of their RNI for protein but 55% consumed less than 90% of their recommended total energy intake and 52.5% consumed less than 90% of their RNI for carbohydrate. 87.5% of participants were found to consume at least one supplement per week. This indicates that the majority of participants consumed too much protein, often increasing intake with supplements, which resulted in the participants failing to consume the RNI for other major food groups and not meeting the recommended energy intake. Future research should be conducted to examine exercisers knowledge of protein intake and supplement use.
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