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Abstract - Nutrition and Soccer – a study with adult females

Evaluate the habits of nutritional intake of female adult soccer players and compare the obtained results with the recommendations from literature.


Materials and Methods: the sample was formed by 45 female soccer players, aged between 18 and 39 years old (22,6 ±6,07). They represent clubs in the 1st and 2nd division of the national championship. They present the following soccer playing characteristics: a) time playing soccer: 6,3 ±4,6 years (1-20), b) nº practices/week: 3,0 ±0,3 (2-4), c) practice duration: 93 ±9,5 minutes (90-120), national team appearances: 3,8 ±13,1 caps (0-81).


The evaluation of the habits of nutritional intake was made by the semiquantative survey of the frequency of food consumption, developed by the Service of Hygiene and Epidemiology of the Faculty of Medicine, University of Porto. The conversion of food into nutrients was made on the computer programme «The Food Processor Plus», where data about the consumption of macro and micronutrients was obtained.


The statistic procedures used were arithmetic mean, standard deviation and relative frequency (%). All the data was analyzed on SPSS 16.0.


Results: generally, we verify a wrong distribution of the intake of macronutrients considering the recommended values for sportspeople, that is to say, an excessive consumption of proteins and fat and a low consumption of carbohydrates. In terms of the intake of micronutrients, generally the majority of soccer players exceeds the recommended values, although they are far behind on the consumption of calcium, potassium, chlorine, iodine, molybdenum, beta-carotene, vitamins D, E, K and biotin.


Conclusion: through the studied sample we verified the inadequacy between the nutritional input and the profile of sporting activity. There is not a nutritional pattern that distinguishes young soccer players from other groups of population. In general, we verify a wrong distribution of the nutritional intake, noting deficiencies and excessive nutritional consumptions.


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