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Experts present scientific studies
International expert standards for sports nutrition are available for top athletes in various sports. In contrast, there is hardly any confirmed nutritional recommendation for the very large group of performance-oriented leisure and health athletes in the German-speaking area. At the DGE workshop "Sports nutrition practical - top trained and nourished" from 20-21. September 2017 at the Maritim Hotel Bonn, the experts from the DGE working group on sports nutrition will present scientific results for the advice of ambitious leisure and competitive athletes.
The first day focuses on preventive and therapeutic effects, sports medical examinations, performance diagnostics, optimal nutrition with the ratio of energy-supplying nutrients, the timing of meals before and after exercise, correct fluid management and the use of nutritional supplements. On the second day, strength and endurance sports will be examined intensively using case studies. “The conference shows that sports-specific dietary recommendations are increasingly being personalized. Providing nutrients that meet individual needs is essential for health and performance, ”says Prof. Dr. Helmut Heseker, spokesman for the working group.
Fit and healthy with sports
Prof. Daniel König, Albert-Ludwigs-University Freiburg, talks about “Health-promoting effects of physical activity” in his lecture. In addition to high-energy nutrition, a lack of physical exercise contributes to the development of obesity and nutritional diseases. Epidemiological and randomized-controlled studies show a significant and sometimes significant reduction in chronic diseases in physically active people. To achieve this, an energy turnover of approx. 1,000 to 1,500 kcal / week through physical activity is necessary. This requires - in addition to everyday leisure activity - a regular, moderate training program of 30-45 minutes on at least 3-4 days / week with an energy turnover of approx. 250-300 kcal per training unit.
Energy and energy-supplying nutrients - how much more do athletes need?
In order to work out the special features of nutrition for athletes, it is necessary to deal intensively with the sport and the resulting training and competition loads, emphasizes Hans Braun, German Sport University Cologne. In his lecture he addresses energy and protein requirements. Because depending on body weight, body composition and training load, the energy requirement for athletes can be between 1,500 kcal and 8,000 kcal per day. In general, athletes should pay attention to an adequate and adapted energy supply. A sustained low energy supply can result in low energy availability and thus impair performance and training adaptation. This can also have a negative impact on the immune system, bone health or energy metabolism.
For adult mass athletes who are physically active 4-5 times a week for 30 minutes at medium intensity, a protein intake of 0.8 g / kg body weight per day is sufficient. Competitive athletes need individual advice and support depending on the sport and training or competition phase.
Dr. Mareike Großhauser, Olympic Training Center Rhineland-Palatinate / Saarland, points out that the sport-specific nutritional recommendations are increasingly personalized. It emphasizes the role of carbohydrates as the most important source of energy in sports. In addition to a fatigue-retarding function, they also have a key function with regard to training adaptation. Modern training concepts rely on different levels of carbohydrate availability to promote adjustments in favor of fat metabolism. The consumption of various carbohydrates is recommended for easier and quick absorption from the digestive tract.
Fats have health-relevant effects and enable athletes to meet their energy needs. Großhauser warns of a continued fat intake of less than 20% of the energy intake. This harbors the risk of an insufficient supply of fat-soluble vitamins and essential fatty acids. It remains to be determined whether athletes have an increased need for omega-3 fatty acids.
Drink correctly - fluid management in sports
Dr. Stefanie Mosler from the University of Education Schwäbisch Gmünd emphasizes that recommendations for drinking in sports should always be made individually, since the sweat rate varies greatly. The individual fluid loss can be determined via weight checks before and after exercise. Athletes should start training with a balanced fluid balance. With loads of up to 30 minutes, no hydration is necessary, especially for activities of> 60 minutes, drinking is sensible. For endurance sports, a drinking amount of 0.4-0.8 l / hour is recommended. Athletes should find out the optimal amount of drink themselves and be guided by their thirst.
Vitamins and minerals in sports
Jun.-Prof. Questions whether athletes have an increased need and an increased intake affects their performance. Anja Carlsohn, University of Education Schwäbisch Gmünd and spokeswoman for the DGE working group on sports nutrition. With a balanced, energy-covering diet, athletes usually manage to achieve the reference values - with the exception of vitamin D - without any problems. With certain nutrients such as iron in endurance sports and sodium during long-term exertion, there may be a higher demand depending on the exertion. In weight-sensitive sports, restrictive eating behavior with an insufficient supply of calcium and iron is often observed. In addition, athletes' food selection can be limited in phases such as competition or permanently - due to intolerance. An individually tailored diet can reduce the risk of nutrient deficits. A professionally accompanied nutritional supplement is usually only necessary if the medical diagnosis is appropriate, says Carlsohn.