Abstract

In spite of well-documented health benefits of vegetarian diets,less is known regarding the effects of these diets on athletic performance. In this cross-sectional study,we compared elite vegetarian and omnivore adult endurance athletes for maximal oxygen uptake (VO2 max) and strength. Twenty-seven vegetarian (VEG) and 43 omnivore (OMN) athletes were evaluated using VO2 max testing on the treadmill,and strength assessment using a dynamometer to determine peak torque for leg extensions. Dietary data were assessed using detailed seven-day food logs. Although total protein intake was lower among vegetarians in comparison to omnivores,protein intake as a function of body mass did not differ by group (1.2 ± 0.3 and 1.4 ± 0.5 g/kg body mass for VEG and OMN respectively,p = 0.220). VO2 max differed for females by diet group (53.0 ± 6.9 and 47.1 ± 8.6 mL/kg/min for VEG and OMN respectively,p < 0.05) but not for males (62.6 ± 15.4 and 55.7 ± 8.4 mL/kg/min respectively). Peak torque did not differ significantly between diet groups. Results from this study indicate that vegetarian endurance athletes’ cardiorespiratory fitness was greater than that for their omnivorous counterparts,but that peak torque did not differ between diet groups. These data suggest that vegetarian diets do not compromise performance outcomes and may facilitate aerobic capacity in athletes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number726
JournalNutrients
Volume8
Issue number11
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 15 2016

Fingerprint

vegetarian diet
athletes
torque
omnivores
Torque
cross-sectional studies
Athletes
Cross-Sectional Studies
Vegetarian Diet
Diet
protein intake
diet
Athletic Performance
Insurance Benefits
dynamometers
athletic performance
Vegetarians
Cardiorespiratory Fitness
Leg
exercise equipment

Keywords

  • Body composition
  • Dual x-ray absorptiometry (DXA)
  • Dynamometer
  • Endurance
  • Protein
  • Sustainability
  • Torque
  • Vegetarian
  • VO2 max

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Food Science

Cite this

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title = "Cardiorespiratory fitness and peak torque differences between vegetarian and omnivore endurance athletes: A cross-sectional study",
abstract = "In spite of well-documented health benefits of vegetarian diets,less is known regarding the effects of these diets on athletic performance. In this cross-sectional study,we compared elite vegetarian and omnivore adult endurance athletes for maximal oxygen uptake (VO2 max) and strength. Twenty-seven vegetarian (VEG) and 43 omnivore (OMN) athletes were evaluated using VO2 max testing on the treadmill,and strength assessment using a dynamometer to determine peak torque for leg extensions. Dietary data were assessed using detailed seven-day food logs. Although total protein intake was lower among vegetarians in comparison to omnivores,protein intake as a function of body mass did not differ by group (1.2 ± 0.3 and 1.4 ± 0.5 g/kg body mass for VEG and OMN respectively,p = 0.220). VO2 max differed for females by diet group (53.0 ± 6.9 and 47.1 ± 8.6 mL/kg/min for VEG and OMN respectively,p < 0.05) but not for males (62.6 ± 15.4 and 55.7 ± 8.4 mL/kg/min respectively). Peak torque did not differ significantly between diet groups. Results from this study indicate that vegetarian endurance athletes’ cardiorespiratory fitness was greater than that for their omnivorous counterparts,but that peak torque did not differ between diet groups. These data suggest that vegetarian diets do not compromise performance outcomes and may facilitate aerobic capacity in athletes.",
keywords = "Body composition, Dual x-ray absorptiometry (DXA), Dynamometer, Endurance, Protein, Sustainability, Torque, Vegetarian, VO2 max",
author = "Lynch, {Heidi M.} and Christopher Wharton and Carol Johnston",
year = "2016",
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T1 - Cardiorespiratory fitness and peak torque differences between vegetarian and omnivore endurance athletes

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AU - Lynch, Heidi M.

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AU - Johnston, Carol

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N2 - In spite of well-documented health benefits of vegetarian diets,less is known regarding the effects of these diets on athletic performance. In this cross-sectional study,we compared elite vegetarian and omnivore adult endurance athletes for maximal oxygen uptake (VO2 max) and strength. Twenty-seven vegetarian (VEG) and 43 omnivore (OMN) athletes were evaluated using VO2 max testing on the treadmill,and strength assessment using a dynamometer to determine peak torque for leg extensions. Dietary data were assessed using detailed seven-day food logs. Although total protein intake was lower among vegetarians in comparison to omnivores,protein intake as a function of body mass did not differ by group (1.2 ± 0.3 and 1.4 ± 0.5 g/kg body mass for VEG and OMN respectively,p = 0.220). VO2 max differed for females by diet group (53.0 ± 6.9 and 47.1 ± 8.6 mL/kg/min for VEG and OMN respectively,p < 0.05) but not for males (62.6 ± 15.4 and 55.7 ± 8.4 mL/kg/min respectively). Peak torque did not differ significantly between diet groups. Results from this study indicate that vegetarian endurance athletes’ cardiorespiratory fitness was greater than that for their omnivorous counterparts,but that peak torque did not differ between diet groups. These data suggest that vegetarian diets do not compromise performance outcomes and may facilitate aerobic capacity in athletes.

AB - In spite of well-documented health benefits of vegetarian diets,less is known regarding the effects of these diets on athletic performance. In this cross-sectional study,we compared elite vegetarian and omnivore adult endurance athletes for maximal oxygen uptake (VO2 max) and strength. Twenty-seven vegetarian (VEG) and 43 omnivore (OMN) athletes were evaluated using VO2 max testing on the treadmill,and strength assessment using a dynamometer to determine peak torque for leg extensions. Dietary data were assessed using detailed seven-day food logs. Although total protein intake was lower among vegetarians in comparison to omnivores,protein intake as a function of body mass did not differ by group (1.2 ± 0.3 and 1.4 ± 0.5 g/kg body mass for VEG and OMN respectively,p = 0.220). VO2 max differed for females by diet group (53.0 ± 6.9 and 47.1 ± 8.6 mL/kg/min for VEG and OMN respectively,p < 0.05) but not for males (62.6 ± 15.4 and 55.7 ± 8.4 mL/kg/min respectively). Peak torque did not differ significantly between diet groups. Results from this study indicate that vegetarian endurance athletes’ cardiorespiratory fitness was greater than that for their omnivorous counterparts,but that peak torque did not differ between diet groups. These data suggest that vegetarian diets do not compromise performance outcomes and may facilitate aerobic capacity in athletes.

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KW - Vegetarian

KW - VO2 max

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