• What are the maximum protein requirements of strength athletes? A systematic review

      Fallows, Stephen; Foster, Brandon (University of Chester, 2008-09-30)
      Protein intakes above the recommended dietary allowance (RDA) for adult males have been suggested to be essential in accreting lean body mass, particularly in active individuals. Though, what is the maximum protein requirement of strength athletes in order to maximise their performance. A systematic review was conducted on all primary literature to establish the maximum protein requirements of strength athletes. A comprehensive search strategy involving searches of six electronic databases and ‘grey’ literature were conducted. The search was restricted to studies published after 1986 to the present day. All primary research literature that presented the effect of total dietary protein intake on lean body mass was included. Studies that met the inclusion criteria were assessed for methodological quality using the Downs and Black checklist. 4 studies were identified that met the inclusion criteria, although only 3 studies met the quality assessment criteria; two randomised trials and one non-randomised trial. Statistically non-significant trends (p>0.05) deriving from muscle mass measurements, determined that the maximum protein requirement for strength athletes to be a moderate quantity of 1.4g/kg Bw/day. Similar results were shown in all three studies. There is a sparsity of evidence and an inconsistency in the methodological designs between trials, regarding what the maximum protein requirement of strength athletes to be. Yet, it is likely to be a moderate protein intake, rather than a high protein intake.