Evaluation of the dietary supplementation patterns among Calgary-based high performance athletes
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AbstractIt is well documented that athletes report greater dietary supplement (d.s.) usage than non-athletes, however, limited data exists regarding ds practices among Canadian athletes. This descriptive and analytical, cross-sectional research investigated dietary supplementation practices, and opinions, preferred means for d.s. education, and antidoping opinions among elite athletes in the Calgary area. Subjects completed the validated questionnaire by recall. Combined, 582 high performance athletes (314 M, 268 F) representing 27 sports between 11 -42 yrs (mean 19.96 ± 3.91 yrs) participated. The majority (88.4%) reported taking ≥ 1 d.s. during the previous 6 months; mean of 3.08 ± 1.87 d.s. per user. The older and/or higher competitive performance level respondents indicated greater usage. From 1555 d.s. declared, sports drinks (22.4%), sports bars (14.0%), multivitamins and minerals (13.5%), protein supplements (9.0%), and vitamin C (6.4%) were most frequently reported. Family/friends, teammates, and coaches were the primary d.s. advisors. Usage was justified to support physiological demands, and to prevent nutritional deficiencies and/or illness. Most (89.9%) believed they were in compliance with anti-doping regulations and found these rules "easy" to understand. This database is the first of its kind in Canada with potential for extension nationally.
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