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Energy expenditure and dietary intake in professional football players in the Dutch Premier League: Implications for nutritional counselling.

Authors
  • Brinkmans, Naomi Y J1
  • Iedema, Nick1
  • Plasqui, Guy2
  • Wouters, Loek2
  • Saris, Wim H M2
  • van Loon, Luc J C1, 2
  • van Dijk, Jan-Willem1
  • 1 Institute of Sports and Exercise Studies, HAN University of Applied Sciences , Nijmegen , The Netherlands. , (Netherlands)
  • 2 NUTRIM School of Nutrition and Translational Research in Metabolism, Maastricht University Medical Centre , Maastricht , The Netherlands. , (Netherlands)
Type
Published Article
Journal
Journal of Sports Sciences
Publisher
Informa UK (Taylor & Francis)
Publication Date
Dec 01, 2019
Volume
37
Issue
24
Pages
2759–2767
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1080/02640414.2019.1576256
PMID: 30773995
Source
Medline
Keywords
Language
English
License
Unknown

Abstract

Selecting effective dietary strategies for professional football players requires comprehensive information on their energy expenditure (EE) and dietary intake. This observational study aimed to assess EE and dietary intake over a 14-day period in a representative group (n = 41) of professional football players playing in the Dutch Premier League (Eredivisie). Daily EE, as assessed by doubly labelled water, was 13.8 ± 1.5 MJ/day, representing a physical activity level (PAL) of 1.75 ± 0.13. Weighted mean energy intake (EI), as assessed by three face-to-face 24-h recalls, was 11.1 ± 2.9 MJ/day, indicating 18 ± 15% underreporting of EI. Daily EI was higher on match days (13.1 ± 4.1 MJ) compared with training (11.1 ± 3.4 MJ; P < 0.01) and rest days (10.5 ± 3.1 MJ; P < 0.001). Daily carbohydrate intake was significantly higher during match days (5.1 ± 1.7 g/kg body mass (BM)) compared with training (3.9 ± 1.5 g/kg BM; P < 0.001) and rest days (3.7 ± 1.4 g/kg BM; P < 0.001). Weighted mean protein intake was 1.7 ± 0.5 g/kg BM. Daytime distribution of protein intake was skewed, with lowest intakes at breakfast and highest at dinner. In conclusion, daily EE and PAL of professional football players are modest. Daily carbohydrate intake should be increased to maximize performance and recovery. Daily protein intake seems more than adequate, but could be distributed more evenly throughout the day.

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