• Health concerns during menopause

    Health concerns during menopause

    There are numerous health concerns during menopause, including increased risk of certain conditions and changes in body composition, muscle mass and bone mass. Interventions include diet, exercise, supplements and hormonal replacement therapy. What is menopause? Menopause is defined as the final menstrual period. In practice it can difficult to identify menopause as periods start changing (e.g. they can become irregular) years before that last one. The last menstrual period is considered “the last” if there are no other periods in the 12 months that follow. The time before menopause is called perimenopause, and the time after that last menstrual period is called postmenopause (1). Menopause normally happens around 50 years…

  • Protein requirements for female athletes
    Blog,  Nutrition,  Sports nutrition,  Supplements

    Protein requirements for female athletes

    Are protein requirements for female athletes the same than those of male athletes? Although it makes sense to think that body composition, energy metabolism and sex hormones may play a role in nutrient requirements, there are no fast and hard rules, but sensible guidelines as detailed below. Protein requirements for female athletes In theory, female athletes should have slightly lower protein requirements than their male counterparts because oestrogen causes exercising female bodies to increase fatty acid oxidation and decrease amino acid (and carbohydrate) oxidation (1, 2). Moreover, protein catabolism is higher in the luteal phase when oestrogen and progesterone are high (1). On the other hand, some studies seem to…

  • How to improve body composition
    Blog,  Diet,  Nutrition,  Sports nutrition,  Supplements

    How to improve body composition

    As seen previously, improving body composition can confer a competitive advantage to some athletes. Hence the interest of athletes and coaches on how to improve body composition. In general, improving body composition means decreasing fat mass and increasing fat-free mass or muscle mass (a.k.a. lean body mass). Besides training protocols and periodisation, there are nutrition approaches that can achieve a favourable change. How to improve body composition Body composition can be improved using a variety of nutrition approaches. Broadly speaking, they can be categorised as dietary manipulation (e.g. tweaking energy intake or macronutrient levels) and supplementation. Note that not all research in this area is done on athletes. Some studies…

  • body composition
    Blog,  Sports nutrition

    Body composition in sport

    Body composition in sport receives much attention from athletes and everyone in their teams, from coaches to dietitians. This is because certain levels of body mass and fat levels are regarded as important for performance and/or aesthetics. What is body composition? Generally speaking, body composition refers to the relative amount of different tissues in the body. Most of the time, the main focus is body fat content. However, it is well known that other tissues such as bone and muscle are also important for athletic performance. For example, muscle is essential for generating power (1). Body composition in sport Body composition is important in those sports known as weight sensitive.…

  • Protein timing and quantity for building muscle
    Blog,  Diet,  Nutrition,  Sports nutrition

    Protein timing and quantity for building muscle

    Protein intake is essential for muscle synthesis and repair. The digestion process breaks down protein into amino acids, which are the building blocks of muscle and many other components of our body. We have explored protein quality in a previous article. Today we will focus on protein timing and quantity for building muscle. How much protein in total? The total protein requirement depends on many, many things. I won’t go into any detail in this article and just say the range is typically anywhere between 0.8 and 2 grams (g) of protein per kilogram (kg) of body weight. How much protein per meal? The optimal dose of protein for muscle…