A. Hurd1, C. Papadopoulos1, K. McConnell1, K. Pritchett2

1Pacific Lutheran University, Tacoma, WA; 2Central Washington University, Ellensburg, WA

Collegiate athletes have an increased caloric expenditure due to their rigorous training and competition schedules resulting in increased energy needs. However, they do not always monitor the quality of their nutritional intake, especially during road games. PURPOSE: The purpose of this study was to assess the nutritional knowledge and intake of female collegiate athletes and compare their diets between home and away games. METHODS: Thirty-three division III college-level female athletes completed a nutrition knowledge questionnaire and the eating attitude test (EAT-26) to assess their nutrition knowledge and to determine risk for disordered eating behaviors. To determine nutritional intake, the athletes recorded their food intake on the two days before a home-game and on the two days before an away-game. A paired ttest was used to compare the diets of the female athletes between the home and away games. Significance was set at p<0.05. RESULTS: The average caloric intake before the home game (1,994.3 ± 478.0 kcal) was lower than the average caloric intake before the away game (2,054.7 ± 510.0 kcal), but this difference was not significantly different (p=0.38). The athletes consumed more protein (76.7 ± 23.3 g) and carbohydrates (252.0 ± 87.8 g) before the away game versus the amount of protein (72.9 ± 25.7 g) and carbohydrates (240.0 ± 82.4 g) consumed before playing at home, but this was not significantly different (p>0.05). The amount of fat consumed at home (80.4 ± 56.9 g) was higher, but not significantly different (p=0.69) than the amount of fat consumed on the road (76.8 ± 23.9 g). The female athletes consumed more sugar, sodium, and cholesterol on the road compared to the home game, but they were not significantly different (p>0.05). The mean nutritional knowledge test score was 49.9 ± 13.5%. Most athletes had low EAT-26 scores suggesting that there is low risk for disordered eating behaviors. CONCLUSION: In this sample population, the results indicate that the quantity and quality of the diet of female collegiate athletes did not vary between home and away games. Based on the results, further research should be conducted to determine whether playing time affects nutritional intake. Moreover, further research should examine the relationship between nutritional knowledge and intake before home and away games.

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