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Article Title

EGG CONSUMPTION IS ASSOCIATED WITH SLEEP QUALITY IN COLLEGIATE WOMEN SOCCER ATHLETES

Abstract

Jessica A. Provost1, Linda J. D’Silva1, Jeremiah Diaz1, Jackson Mores1, Prabhakar Chalise1, Aaron F. Carbuhn1

1University of Kansas Medical Center, Kansas City, Kansas

In athletes, poor sleep quality is associated with decreased athletic performance and increased injury susceptibility, including a greater number and severity of musculoskeletal injuries in soccer athletes. Frequent egg consumption is associated with better sleep quality in non-athletes, but it is unknown if similar associations are seen in sport populations like women’s soccer. PURPOSE: The purpose of this pilot study is to examine the relationship between egg consumption and sleep quality in women soccer players before and after a 12-week competitive season. We hypothesized that (i) egg consumption would be associated with sleep quality and (ii) lower to no egg consumption would be associated with poorer sleep quality following the season. METHODS: Twenty-four women soccer players on a Division IA university team completed a food frequency questionnaire and the Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index (PSQI) at two time-points; preseason (PRE) and postseason (POST). Weekly whole egg consumption and global PSQI scores were analyzed using Spearman correlation. RESULTS: Mean PSQI at both time points exceeded the definition of poor sleep quality = >5 (5.5 ± 2.9 PRE; 5.71 ± 2.6 POST) and did not differ significantly (p=0.452). Mean weekly eggs consumed (3.50 ± 4.52 PRE; 3.13 ± 3.38 POST), similar to the average of 3.5 reported in healthy adults, did not differ across the season (p=0.291). Of the correlations performed for all possible PRE/POST pairings, significance was found between PRE egg consumption and POST sleep quality (r=-0.481, p=0.017). The correlation between POST egg consumption and sleep quality (r=-0.393, p=0.058) were not statistically significant, however, it was in the direction of higher egg consumption having better sleep quality. CONCLUSION: Collegiate women soccer players report poor sleep quality. Egg consumption is associated with sleep quality, with lower to no preseason egg consumption associated with poorer sleep quality following a competitive season. Thus, this preliminary finding suggests egg consumption may be a modifiable factor for improving sleep quality in soccer athletes. However, due to the small sample and limited data collection (i.e., a single season), further research is required to better understand this possible relationship.

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