THE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN DIET AND SLEEP QUALITY IN COLLEGIATE CROSS-COUNTRY AND TRACK & FIELD ATHLETES
Mia Young, Shawn Allen, Allen Redinger, Grace White, Jillian Joyce and Breanne Baker
Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, OK
Previous studies have suggested that the consumption of specific foods can impact sleep quality through the disruption of the circadian rhythm. One key demographic this relationship might impact is student-athletes, who have been shown to have poor sleep and diet quality, such as collegiate cross-country and track and field (XC+T&F) athletes. However, to-date no investigations have described this relationship in this cohort. PURPOSE: This study aimed to analyze the cross-sectional connection between sleep, nutrient intake, and dietary quality (DQ) in Division I XC+T&F athletes. METHODS: Twenty-five (male n=5, female n=20) XC+T&F athletes completed the Pittsburg Sleep Quality Index (PSQI) for sleep quality and the Automatic Self-Administered Dietary Assessment Tool (ASA24) for nutrient intake, the Healthy Eating Index 2015 (HEI) for DQ. All dietary measures were compared between those who had normal (<5) or poor (≥5) PSQI scores using an Independent t-test, α=0.05. RESULTS: When considering total HEI scores, normal sleepers scored 68 out of 100, while poor sleepers scored 61 out of 100, which was not statistically different (p=0.263). However, when looking at specific macro- and micronutrients, normal sleepers reported a greater percentage of Dietary Reference Intakes for Vitamins A, K, and B1, Copper, and Selenium compared to poor sleepers (p≤0.043; Table 1). Furthermore, Folate (p=0.056), Potassium (p=0.055), and total calories from protein (p=0.058, not shown) were trending to statistical significance to be greater in athletes with normal sleep scores compared to those who reported poorer sleep. CONCLUSION: This study supports previous findings in non-athlete cohorts that dietary Vitamin A and Vitamin K are associated with improved sleep quality. Athletes should be encouraged to regularly assess their diet to identify potential food groups and nutrients that may be lacking and potentially impacting their sleep quality.
Young, M; Allen, S; Redinger, A; White, G; Joyce, J; and Baker, B
"THE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN DIET AND SLEEP QUALITY IN COLLEGIATE CROSS-COUNTRY AND TRACK & FIELD ATHLETES,"
International Journal of Exercise Science: Conference Proceedings: Vol. 11:
10, Article 63.
Available at: https://digitalcommons.wku.edu/ijesab/vol11/iss10/63