Publications by authors named "Bronwen Lundy"

15 Publications

  • Page 1 of 1

The Utility of the Low Energy Availability in Females Questionnaire to Detect Markers Consistent With Low Energy Availability-Related Conditions in a Mixed-Sport Cohort.

Int J Sport Nutr Exerc Metab 2021 Jul 20:1-11. Epub 2021 Jul 20.

Australian Catholic University.

The Low Energy Availability in Females Questionnaire (LEAF-Q) was validated to identify risk of the female athlete triad (triad) in female endurance athletes. This study explored the ability of the LEAF-Q to detect conditions related to low energy availability (LEA) in a mixed sport cohort of female athletes. Data included the LEAF-Q, SCOFF Questionnaire for disordered eating, dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry-derived body composition and bone mineral density, Mini International Neuropsychiatric Interview, blood pressure, and blood metabolic and reproductive hormones. Participants were grouped according to LEAF-Q score (≥8 or <8), and a comparison of means was undertaken. Sensitivity, specificity, and predictive values of the overall score and subscale scores were calculated in relation to the triad and biomarkers relevant to LEA. Fisher's exact test explored differences in prevalence of these conditions between groups. Seventy-five athletes (18-32 years) participated. Mean LEAF-Q score was 8.0 ± 4.2 (55% scored ≥8). Injury and menstrual function subscale scores identified low bone mineral density (100% sensitivity, 95% confidence interval [15.8%, 100%]) and menstrual dysfunction (80.0% sensitivity, 95% confidence interval [28.4%, 99.5%]), respectively. The gastrointestinal subscale did not detect surrogate markers of LEA. LEAF-Q score cannot be used to classify athletes as "high risk" of conditions related to LEA, nor can it be used as a surrogate diagnostic tool for LEA given the low specificity identified. Our study supports its use as a screening tool to rule out risk of LEA-related conditions or to create selective low-risk groups that do not need management as there were generally high negative predictive values (range 76.5-100%) for conditions related to LEA.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1123/ijsnem.2020-0233DOI Listing
July 2021

Inflammation and Oral Contraceptive Use in Female Athletes Before the Rio Olympic Games.

Front Physiol 2020 25;11:497. Epub 2020 May 25.

Griffith Sports Physiology and Performance, School of Allied Health Sciences, Griffith University, Gold Coast, QLD, Australia.

This study investigated the association between synthetic ovarian hormone use [i.e., the oral contraceptive (OC) pill] and basal C-reactive protein (CRP), peripheral blood immune cell subsets, and circulating pro- and anti-inflammatory cytokine concentrations in elite female athletes. Elite female athletes ( = 53) selected in Rio Summer Olympic squads participated in this study; 25 were taking an OC (AthletesOC) and 28 were naturally hormonally cycling (AthletesNC). Venous blood samples were collected at rest for the determination of sex hormones, cortisol, CRP, peripheral blood mononuclear memory and naïve CD4+ T-cells, CD8+ T-cells and natural killer cells, as well as pro- and anti-inflammatory cytokine concentrations. C-reactive protein concentrations were elevated ( < 0.001) in AthletesOC (median = 2.02, IQR = 3.15) compared to AthletesNC (median = 0.57, IQR = 1.07). No differences were reported for cortisol, cytokines, or PBMC immune cell subsets, although there was a trend ( = 0.062) for higher IL-6 concentrations in AthletesNC. Female Olympians had substantially higher CRP concentrations, a marker of inflammation and tissue damage, before the Rio Olympic Games if they used an OC. Future research should examine the potential consequences for athlete performance/recovery so that, if necessary, practitioners can implement prevention programs.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fphys.2020.00497DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7261912PMC
May 2020

Key viral immune genes and pathways identify elite athletes with URS.

Exerc Immunol Rev 2020 ;26:56-78

School of Medical Science and Menzies Health Institute QLD, Griffith University, Southport, QLD, Australia, Griffith University, QLD, Australia.

Purpose: Habitual intense exercise may increase the incidence of upper respiratory symptoms (URS) in elite athletes. This study investigated whether immune gene expression could identify gene markers that discriminate athletes with a higher prevalence of URS.

Methods: This cross-sectional analysis of elite Australian athletes from various sports investigated whether athletes retrospectively reporting URS for two days or more in a month (n=38), had an altered immune gene expression profile compared with asymptomatic athletes (n=33). Peripheral blood samples were collected during Olympic selection events with corresponding URS data collected for the one-month period before sampling. Digital immune gene expression analysis was undertaken using the NanoString PanCancer Immune Profiling panel.

Results: Fifty immune genes were differentially expressed between the groups (p<0.05) and approximately 78% of these genes were more highly expressed in athletes reporting URS. Many of these genes were interferon-stimulated genes or genes involved in the Jak/Stat signalling pathway. Only interferon alpha inducible protein 27 (IFI27), an interferon stimulated gene involved in viral response, remained significantly higher in athletes reporting URS (log2 fold-difference=2.49, odds ratio 1.02 per unit increase; p<0.01) post-adjustment and discriminated athletes reporting URS from asymptomatic athletes with 78% accuracy.

Conclusions: Expression of IFI27 could differentiate athletes reporting URS from asymptomatic athletes, a gene that is upregulated in the immune response to viral infection. Upregulation of viral signalling pathways provides novel information on the potential aetiology of URS in elite Olympic athletes.
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March 2020

Relative Energy Deficiency in Sport in Male Athletes: A Commentary on Its Presentation Among Selected Groups of Male Athletes.

Int J Sport Nutr Exerc Metab 2018 Jul 24;28(4):364-374. Epub 2018 Jul 24.

Harvard Medical School.

Low energy availability (LEA) is a key element of the Female Athlete Triad. Causes of LEA include failure to match high exercise energy expenditure (unintentional) or pathological behaviors of disordered eating (compulsive) and overzealous weight control programs (misguided but intentional). Recognition of such scenarios in male athletes contributed to the pronouncement of the more inclusive Relative Energy Deficiency in Sport (RED-S) syndrome. This commentary describes the insights and experience of the current group of authors around the apparently heightened risk of LEA in some populations of male athletes: road cyclists, rowers (lightweight and open weight), athletes in combat sports, distance runners, and jockeys. The frequency, duration, and magnitude of the LEA state appear to vary between populations. Common risk factors include cyclical management of challenging body mass and composition targets (including "making weight") and the high energy cost of some training programs or events that is not easily matched by energy intake. However, additional factors such as food insecurity and lack of finances may also contribute to impaired nutrition in some populations. Collectively, these insights substantiate the concept of RED-S in male athletes and suggest that a specific understanding of a sport, subpopulation, or culture may identify a complex series of factors that can contribute to LEA and the type and severity of its outcomes. This commentary provides a perspective on the range of risk factors that should be addressed in future surveys of RED-S in athletic populations and targeted for specific investigation and modification.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1123/ijsnem.2018-0182DOI Listing
July 2018

Pitfalls of Conducting and Interpreting Estimates of Energy Availability in Free-Living Athletes.

Int J Sport Nutr Exerc Metab 2018 Jul 20;28(4):350-363. Epub 2018 Jul 20.

University of Copenhagen.

The human body requires energy for numerous functions including, growth, thermogenesis, reproduction, cellular maintenance, and movement. In sports nutrition, energy availability (EA) is defined as the energy available to support these basic physiological functions and good health once the energy cost of exercise is deducted from energy intake (EI), relative to an athlete's fat-free mass (FFM). Low EA provides a unifying theory to link numerous disorders seen in both female and male athletes, described by the syndrome Relative Energy Deficiency in Sport, and related to restricted energy intake, excessive exercise or a combination of both. These outcomes are incurred in different dose-response patterns relative to the reduction in EA below a "healthy" level of ∼45 kcal·kg FFM·day. Although EA estimates are being used to guide and monitor athletic practices, as well as support a diagnosis of Relative Energy Deficiency in Sport, problems associated with the measurement and interpretation of EA in the field should be explored. These include the lack of a universal protocol for the calculation of EA, the resources needed to achieve estimates of each of the components of the equation, and the residual errors in these estimates. The lack of a clear definition of the value for EA that is considered "low" reflects problems around its measurement, as well as differences between individuals and individual components of "normal"/"healthy" function. Finally, further investigation of nutrition and exercise behavior including within- and between-day energy spread and dietary characteristics is warranted since it may directly contribute to low EA or its secondary problems.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1123/ijsnem.2018-0142DOI Listing
July 2018

The effects of intensified training on resting metabolic rate (RMR), body composition and performance in trained cyclists.

PLoS One 2018 14;13(2):e0191644. Epub 2018 Feb 14.

Research Institute for Sport and Exercise, University of Canberra, Bruce ACT, Australia.

Background: Recent research has demonstrated decreases in resting metabolic rate (RMR), body composition and performance following a period of intensified training in elite athletes, however the underlying mechanisms of change remain unclear. Therefore, the aim of the present study was to investigate how an intensified training period, designed to elicit overreaching, affects RMR, body composition, and performance in trained endurance athletes, and to elucidate underlying mechanisms.

Method: Thirteen (n = 13) trained male cyclists completed a six-week training program consisting of a "Baseline" week (100% of regular training load), a "Build" week (~120% of Baseline load), two "Loading" weeks (~140, 150% of Baseline load, respectively) and two "Recovery" weeks (~80% of Baseline load). Training comprised of a combination of laboratory based interval sessions and on-road cycling. RMR, body composition, energy intake, appetite, heart rate variability (HRV), cycling performance, biochemical markers and mood responses were assessed at multiple time points throughout the six-week period. Data were analysed using a linear mixed modeling approach.

Results: The intensified training period elicited significant decreases in RMR (F(5,123.36) = 12.0947, p = <0.001), body mass (F(2,19.242) = 4.3362, p = 0.03), fat mass (F(2,20.35) = 56.2494, p = <0.001) and HRV (F(2,22.608) = 6.5212, p = 0.005); all of which improved following a period of recovery. A state of overreaching was induced, as identified by a reduction in anaerobic performance (F(5,121.87) = 8.2622, p = <0.001), aerobic performance (F(5,118.26) = 2.766, p = 0.02) and increase in total mood disturbance (F(5, 110.61) = 8.1159, p = <0.001).

Conclusion: Intensified training periods elicit greater energy demands in trained cyclists, which, if not sufficiently compensated with increased dietary intake, appears to provoke a cascade of metabolic, hormonal and neural responses in an attempt to restore homeostasis and conserve energy. The proactive monitoring of energy intake, power output, mood state, body mass and HRV during intensified training periods may alleviate fatigue and attenuate the observed decrease in RMR, providing more optimal conditions for a positive training adaptation.
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http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0191644PLOS
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5812577PMC
March 2018

Prevalence of illness, poor mental health and sleep quality and low energy availability prior to the 2016 Summer Olympic Games.

Br J Sports Med 2018 Jan 22;52(1):47-53. Epub 2017 Oct 22.

Department of Physiotherapy, Australian Institute of Sport, Canberra, Australia.

Objective: Establish the prevalence of illness symptoms, poor sleep quality, poor mental health symptoms, low energy availability and stress-recovery state in an Olympic cohort late in the 3 months prior to the Summer Olympic Games.

Methods: Olympic athletes (n=317) from 11 sports were invited to complete questionnaires administered 3 months before the Rio 2016 Olympic Games. These questionnaires included the Depression, Anxiety and Stress Questionnaire, Perceived Stress Scale, Dispositional Resilience Scale, Recovery-Stress Questionnaire (REST-Q-52 item), Low Energy Availability in Females Questionnaire (LEAF-Q), Epworth Sleepiness Scale, Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index and custom-made questionnaires on probiotic usage and travel. Multiple illness (case) definitions were applied. ORs and attributable fractions in the population were used. Factor analyses were used to explore the relationships between variables.

Results: The response rate was of 42% (male, n=47, age 25.8±4.1 years; female, n=85, age 24.3±3.9 years). Low energy availability was associated with sustaining an illness in the previous month (upper respiratory, OR=3.8, 95% CI 1.2 to 12). The main factor relating to illness pertained to a combination of anxiety and stress-recovery states (as measured by the REST-Q-52 item). All participants reported at least one episode of illness in the last month (100% prevalence).

Conclusions: All participants reported at least one illness symptom in the previous month. Low energy availability was a leading variable associated with illness in Olympic-class athletes. The estimates duration of symptoms ranged from 2 to 7 days. Factor analyses show the interdependence of various health domains and support multidisciplinary care.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bjsports-2017-098208DOI Listing
January 2018

A multifactorial evaluation of illness risk factors in athletes preparing for the Summer Olympic Games.

J Sci Med Sport 2017 Aug 21;20(8):745-750. Epub 2017 Mar 21.

Australian Institute of Sport, Australia; University of Canberra Research Institute for Sport and Exercise (UCRISE), Australia.

Objectives: Illness can disrupt training and competition performance of athletes. Few studies have quantified the relative contribution of the known medical, behavioural and lifestyle risk factors.

Design: Cross-sectional.

Methods: Olympic athletes from 11 sports (n=221) were invited to complete questionnaires administered nine months before the Rio 2016 Olympic Games. These included the Depression, Anxiety and Stress Questionnaire (DASS-21), Perceived Stress Scale (PSS), Dispositional Resilience Scale (DRS), Recovery-Stress Questionnaire (REST-Q-52 item), Low Energy in Females Questionnaire (LEAF-Q), a modified Personal and Household Hygiene questionnaire, Epworth Sleepiness Scale, Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index, and custom-made questionnaires on probiotic usage and travel. An illness (case) was defined as an event which limited training or competition for greater hours in the prior month. Odds ratios and attributable fractions in the population (AFP) were utilised for categorical variables with independent t-tests or Wilcoxon rank-sum for continuous variables.

Results: Eighty-one athletes responded (male, n=26; female, n=55). There were 16 illness cases and 65 controls. Female athletes were at higher odds of illness (OR=9.4, 95%CI 1.3-410, p=0.01, AFP=0.84). Low energy availability (LEAF-Q score ≥8: OR=7.4, 95%CI 0.78-352, p=0.04, AFP=0.76), depression symptoms (DASS-21: depression score >4, OR=8.4, 95%CI 1.1-59, p<0.01; AFP=0.39) and higher perceived stress (PSS: 10-item, p=0.04) were significantly associated with illness.

Conclusions: Female sex, low energy availability, and mental health are associated with sports incapacity (time loss) due to illness. Low energy availability had high attributable fractions in the population and stands out as a primary association with illness.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jsams.2017.02.010DOI Listing
August 2017

New approaches to determine fatigue in elite athletes during intensified training: Resting metabolic rate and pacing profile.

PLoS One 2017 15;12(3):e0173807. Epub 2017 Mar 15.

Research Institute for Sport and Exercise, University of Canberra, Bruce ACT, Australia.

Background: Elite rowers complete a high volume of training across a number of modalities to prepare for competition, including periods of intensified load, which may lead to fatigue and short-term performance decrements. As yet, the influence of substantial fatigue on resting metabolic rate (RMR) and exercise regulation (pacing), and their subsequent utility as monitoring parameters, has not been explicitly investigated in elite endurance athletes.

Method: Ten National-level rowers completed a four-week period of intensified training. RMR, body composition and energy intake were assessed PRE and POST the four-week period using indirect calorimetry, Dual-Energy X-Ray Densitometry (DXA), and three-day food diary, respectively. On-water rowing performance and pacing strategy was evaluated from 5 km time trials. Wellness was assessed weekly using the Multicomponent Training Distress Scale (MTDS).

Results: Significant decreases in absolute (mean ± SD of difference, p-value: -466 ± 488 kJ.day-1, p = 0.01) and relative RMR (-8.0 ± 8.1 kJ.kg.FFM-1, p = 0.01) were observed. Significant reductions in body mass (-1.6 ± 1.3 kg, p = 0.003) and fat mass (-2.2 ± 1.2 kg, p = 0.0001) were detected, while energy intake was unchanged. On-water 5 km rowing performance worsened (p < 0.05) and an altered pacing strategy was evident. Fatigue and total mood disturbance significantly increased across the cycle (p < 0.05), and trends were observed for reduced vigour and increased sleep disturbance (p < 0.1).

Conclusion: Four weeks of heavy training decreased RMR and body composition variables in elite rowers and induced substantial fatigue, likely related to an imbalance between energy intake and output. This study demonstrates that highly experienced athletes do not necessarily select the correct energy intake during periods of intensified training, and this can be assessed by reductions in RMR and body composition. The shortfall in energy availability likely affected recovery from training and altered 5 km time trial pacing strategy, resulting in reduced performance.
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http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0173807PLOS
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5351856PMC
September 2017

The effect of variable doses of inorganic nitrate-rich beetroot juice on simulated 2,000-m rowing performance in trained athletes.

Int J Sports Physiol Perform 2014 Jul 30;9(4):615-20. Epub 2013 Sep 30.

Discipline of Exercise and Sports Science, University of Sydney, Lidcombe, NSW, Australia.

Context: Beetroot juice is a naturally rich source of inorganic nitrate (NO(3-)), a compound hypothesized to enhance endurance performance by improving exercise efficiency.

Purpose: To investigate the effect of different doses of beetroot juice on 2000-m ergometer-rowing performance in highly trained athletes.

Methods: Ten highly trained male rowers volunteered to participate in a placebo-controlled, double-blinded crossover study. Two hours before undertaking a 2000-m rowing-ergometer test, subjects consumed beetroot juice containing 0 mmol (placebo), 4.2 mmol (SINGLE), or 8.4 mmol (DOUBLE) NO(3-). Blood samples were taken before supplement ingestion and immediately before the rowing test for analysis of plasma [NO(3-)] and [nitrite (NO(2-))].

Results: The SINGLE dose demonstrated a trivial effect on time to complete 2000 m compared with placebo (mean difference: 0.2 ± 2.5 s). A possibly beneficial effect was found with DOUBLE compared with SINGLE (mean difference -1.8 ± 2.1 s) and with placebo (-1.6 ± 1.6 s). Plasma [NO(2-)] and [NO(3-)] demonstrated a dose-response effect, with greater amounts of ingested nitrate leading to substantially higher concentrations (DOUBLE > SINGLE > placebo). There was a moderate but insignificant correlation (r = -.593, P = .055) between change in plasma [NO(2-)] and performance time.

Conclusion: Compared with nitratedepleted beetroot juice, a high (8.4 mmol NO(3-)) but not moderate (4.2 mmol NO(3-)) dose of NO(3-) in beetroot juice, consumed 2 h before exercise, may improve 2000-m rowing performance in highly trained athletes.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1123/ijspp.2013-0207DOI Listing
July 2014

Nutrition for synchronized swimming: a review.

Authors:
Bronwen Lundy

Int J Sport Nutr Exerc Metab 2011 Oct 7;21(5):436-45. Epub 2011 Sep 7.

English Institute of Sport, Marlow, UK.

Synchronized swimming enjoys worldwide popularity and has been part of the formal Olympic program since 1984. Despite this, relatively little research has been conducted on participant nutrition practices and requirements, and there are significant gaps in the knowledge base despite the numerous areas in which nutrition could affect performance and safety. This review aimed to summarize current findings and identify areas requiring further research. Uniform physique in team or duet events may be more important than absolute values for muscularity or body fat, but a lean and athletic appearance remains key. Synchronized swimmers appear to have an increased risk of developing eating disorders, and there is evidence of delayed menarche, menstrual dysfunction, and lower bone density relative to population norms. Dietary practices remain relatively unknown, but micronutrient status for iron and magnesium may be compromised. More research is required across all aspects of nutrition status, anthropometry, and physiology, and both sports nutrition and sports medicine support may be required to reduce risks for participants.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1123/ijsnem.21.5.436DOI Listing
October 2011

Anthropometric characteristics and competition dietary intakes of professional rugby league players.

Int J Sport Nutr Exerc Metab 2006 Apr;16(2):199-213

Sydney Sports Medicine Centre, Sydney Markets NSW 2129, Australia.

This study aimed to describe the physique characteristics and competition nutrient intake of professional Rugby League players and to assess use of a statistical technique for evaluating validity of dietary reporting. Players (n = 74) were endomorphic mesomorphs and had a mean weight, height, and BMI of 93.4 +/- 10.9 kg, 179.9 +/- 7.3 cm, and 28.5 +/- 2.1 kg/m2 respectively. Mean sum of eight skinfolds was 78.9 +/- 2.2 mm (12.4 +/- 2.9% fat). Players (n = 34) reported a mean daily energy intake of 17,708 +/- 3,688 kJ (carbohydrate 51%, protein 18%, fat 25%, alcohol 4%) with 6 and 2.0 g x kg(-1) x d(-1) from carbohydrate and protein respectively. Micronutrient intake was adequate but alcohol consumption was high relative to health standards. The dietary records provided a plausible estimate of energy intake however further research is required to evaluate statistical techniques for assessing dietary validity in athlete groups.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1123/ijsnem.16.2.199DOI Listing
April 2006
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