Study reveals many athletes don’t know what they’re doing when it comes to Protein Supplements

Tuesday 26th January 2010

Following a recent survey conducted at the Université de Montréal Department of Nutrition by Martin Fréchette, it is thought that many athletes are drowning their bodies with protein supplements when their bodies already have adequate amounts of protein. Additionally, the questionnaire revealed that many of these athletes are simply taking the supplements to boost their athletic performance but are totally oblivious as to what the protein supplements are and are not doing to their bodies.

Martin Fréchette sent 42 athletes who all specialized in a variety of different areas, including cycling, swimming, volleyball, running and so on, a questionnaire that asked them a variety of different questions relating to the protein supplements they were all taking. The survey then revealed that over 90% of the athletes took protein supplements on a regular basis in the form of things such as energy drinks and powdered drinks. However, a staggering 70% of these commented that if they ceased these protein supplements they did not feel their performance would be impaired. So why are they taking it? Good question, because they themselves don’t seem to know as only 25% of them knew a good solid scientific reason for what role protein supplements play in our bodies.

What appears to be the most concerning aspect of this latest study is the almost social expectation that athletes should be taking these false supplements in order to aid their performance; when in fact over 80% of them already have a good healthy amount of protein within their bodies. On top of that, other studies into what is contained within supplements showed that up to 20% of these used by athletes contain substances that are illicit. Moreover, Fréchette warns that supplement-takers are increasing levels of other minerals, e.g. iron and sodium, to beyond the normal accepted level which can lead to various health problems including liver abnormalities.

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