Increased carbohydrate availability effects energy and nutrient periodisation of professional male athletes from the Australian Football League

Brianna S Salagaras, Kristen L MacKenzie-Shalders, Gary John Slater, Chris McLellan, Vernon G Coffey

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Abstract

This research aimed to explore the effect of increased carbohydrate availability intervention on energy intake and distribution in professional Australian Football athletes. Six 24-h energy and macronutrient intakes were quantified (n = 19 males; age 24 6 4 y, stature 187 6 8 cm, mass 87 6 9 kg) using photographic food diaries and Foodworks analyses. Energy expenditure was estimated for the same period using GeneActiv accelerometers. During 3 control days, athletes had ad libitum access to food, while the 3 intervention days increased carbohydrate availability, through greater prompting and access to carbohydrate foods. Daily energy intake was higher during intervention (185 6 40 kJ/kg/d) compared with control (172 6 31 kJ/kg/d; p < 0.05) but remained below estimated expenditure, and carbohydrate intake was also greater with intervention (5.0 6 0.2 g/kg/d) than control (4.0 6 0.2 g/kg/d; p < 0.05). Expenditure was highest during the morning, which coincided with lowest intake on all days, while the intervention was associated with greater carbohydrate intake in the morning (0.6 g/kg, p < 0.05) compared with control. Increasing availability of carbohydrate during high-load training generated a modest increase in carbohydrate and energy intake, and the intervention was most effective in improving carbohydrate intake during mornings. Novelty: Increased access and provision of carbohydrate foods increased carbohydrate consumption and energy intake on high training load days. Daily distribution of energy intake can be modified through actively promoting carbohydrate consumption.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1510-1516
Number of pages7
JournalApplied Physiology, Nutrition and Metabolism
Volume46
Issue number12
Early online date27 Jul 2021
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2021

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