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Research Article

An Exploratory Study of Weight-Loss Practices of Gymnasts in Rivers State, Nigeria

I.C. Elendu and O.A. Umeakuka
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A cross-sectional survey design was used to explore the weight-loss practices among gymnasts in Rivers State, Nigeria. Data were collected from eighteen gymnasts using 11-item structured questionnaire. The generated data were analyzed using percentage and chi-square statistics. Results showed that majority of the gymnasts decreased their consumption of calories (77.78%), increased their expenditure of calories through exercise (88.89%), restrict food (94.44%), over-exercise (83.33%) and engage in voluntary fluid reduction or dehydration (83.33%) to lose weight. Among the findings was that the gymnasts' gender, age and years of sporting experience had significant influence on increase expenditure of calories through exercise, food restriction, use of drugs, use of nutritional supplements and use of steam baths or saunas for weight-loss. Among the recommendations are that nutritionist/dieticians should be employed and integrated into the gymnastics team to provide and guide the gymnasts on how to effectively use healthy and supervised nutrition to lose weight. The gymnasts should be educated on the health and performance effects of engaging in harmful weight-loss practices through seminars. Stakeholders should be sensitized on the weight-loss practices. This will enable them to discourage any gymnast planning to adopt unhealthy weight-loss measures.

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  How to cite this article:

I.C. Elendu and O.A. Umeakuka, 2010. An Exploratory Study of Weight-Loss Practices of Gymnasts in Rivers State, Nigeria. Pakistan Journal of Nutrition, 9: 352-357.

DOI: 10.3923/pjn.2010.352.357


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