New guidelines for athletes on protein intake

April 15, 2019 in Nutrition Topics in the News, Sports Nutrition and Exercise

New guidelines for athletes on protein intake

A new review from the University of Stirling in the U.K. and McMaster University in Hamilton, Canada has set out new international guidelines for protein intake in track and field athletes.

The findings form part of the updated International Association of Athletics Federations' (IAAF) consensus statement on Sports Nutrition for Track and Field Athletes.

Track and field athletes engage in vigorous training that places stress on body tissues that require nutritional support for optimal recovery. The paper highlights the benefits of protein intake for training adaptation, manipulating body composition and optimizing performance in track and field athletes.

The researchers recommend that, to facilitate the rebuilding of muscle proteins -- which are turning over rapidly due to high training volumes -- track and field athletes should aim for a protein intake around 1.6 grams per kilogram of body weight each day if their goal is to increase muscle mass.

The report also offers guidance to those track and field athletes aiming to optimize their ratio of strength, power or endurance to body weight for a performance advantage.

Track and field athletes who are restricting energy intake -- and have the goal of minimising the loss of lean body mass -- should target protein intakes of 1.6 and 2.4 grams per kilogram of body weight per day.

High-performance athletes now have access to up-to-date guidelines that inform the best practice protein nutrition for optimising body composition.

Source: International Journal of Sport Nutrition and Exercise Metabolism, 2019.

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