Vol. 2, Issue 6 (2017)
Food habits and nutrient intake of female soccer athletes of Mumbai city, India
Author(s): Dr. Jagmeet Madan, Dr. Rekha Battalwar, Dr. Tejender Kaur Sarna, Aamatulla Kapasi, Aafiya Ameer Ali, Vibha Kanani, Renuka Mulewa, Saima Mullaji
Abstract: Introduction: Athletic success is strongly influenced by sound nutrition. Healthy and balanced dietary practices have a major impact on overall wellbeing of sportspersons. Poor nutritional status of young female soccer players, mainly due to inadequate food intake and poor nutritional knowledge is detrimental to growth, health and sports performance. Adolescent female team-sport athletes are faced with the challenge of meeting nutritional requirements for growth and development, as well as sport performance. There is a paucity of evidence describing the dietary adequacy of this population in respect to these physiological demands. Therefore, the aim of this study was to comprehensively evaluate the nutrition status of young female soccer athletes. Objective: To assess the food habits and dietary intake of female soccer athletes of Mumbai city. Methods: Data on 235 girls playing soccer with mean age of 12.7±1.8 years was collected from Mumbai city. Food habits were accessed with help of a structured questionnaire. One- day diet recall was used to calculate nutrient intake and percentage recommended dietary allowance was calculated. The statistical methods used in this study are SPSS software, Independent sample T test and Chi-square test. Results: From the 251 girls, 174 (69.3%) girls consumed food before playing soccer, 97 (38.6%) consumed food during playing soccer and 207 (82.5%) consumed food after playing soccer. Most girls (26.2%) either consumed cereals (alone or in combination with pulse or vegetables) or fruit juices (28.5%) followed by milk and milk products (10.5%) as a pre- game meal. During the play, water (61.6%) was the most consumed food item followed by sports drink (21.2%) and fruit juice (13.3%). Most girls (31.1%) consumed cereal (alone or in combination with pulse or vegetables or non-vegetarian food) followed by fruit juices (18%) and processed snacks (13.6%) as a post-game meal. The mean energy intake of girls was 1315 ±313 kcal/day, protein was 39.7±12.3 g/day, carbohydrate was 206.3±62.3 g/day, fat was 41.3±26.7 g/day, calcium was 350.7±186.3 mg/day and iron was 11.8±5.4 mg/day. Percentage RDA intake for energy was 61.3±15.7 %, protein was 90.8±54.4 %, calcium was 45.8±24.1% and iron was 45.9±21.9 %. Girls aged ≥13 years had significantly lower energy intake from fats and RDA intake for energy as compared to girls aged <13 years of age. There was a significant association of RDA intake for energy with age group with higher percentage of girls <13 years getting >75% of RDA as compared to girls aged ≥ 13 years of age (χ2=11.7, p=0.008). There was a significant association of RDA intake for protein with age group with higher percentage of girls <13 years getting >75% of RDA as compared to girls aged ≥ 13 years of age (χ2=12.5, p=0.002). Conclusion: Food habits and nutrient intake of girls playing soccer were inadequate. Nutrition education camps to educate adolescent athletes about food habits and dietary intake need to be planned.