Survey of Dietary and Physiological Status in Adolescent Gymnasts

Yu Chang Lai, Shene Pin Hu, Jen Fang Liu, Yu Fang, Chin Fa Chen, Ping Nan Lo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The aim of this study was to investigate the difference in pubertal development, body composition, and nutritional and antioxidative statuses between adolescent gymnasts and non-athletes. Twenty-one male (16.1-year-old) and 23 female (15.5-year-old) gymnasts participated in this study, and 22 male and 25 female non-athletes were used as controls. Male and female gymnasts had been intensively training for 8.2 and 7.4 years, respectively. Pubertal development was delayed in the female gymnast group. Among female gymnasts, 30.4% experienced delayed menarche, and 50% of pubertal gymnasts had menstrual irregularities. Gymnasts were significantly shorter and leaner, and had less body fat than the controls (p <0.05). In addition, gymnasts had significantly lower plasma vitamin C, glutathione, and total antioxidant levels than did the controls (p <0.05). In conclusion, female gymnasts had a higher incidence of menstrual disorders. All gymnasts were shorter and leaner, and also had a different dietary status, lower iron, antioxidant levels than did the controls.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)114-122
Number of pages9
JournalNutritional Sciences Journal
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2003


  • Adolescence
  • Anthropometry
  • Gymnasts
  • Nutrient intake
  • Oxidative stress

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Food Science


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