According to a recent survey, conducted to find out the preferred choice of athletes and active consumers, sports nutrition topped the list. The survey was published in the journal, Frontiers in Sports and Active Living.
The survey was conducted among 405 students of University College Cork, Ireland who were at least 18 years of age. These participants were either involved in competitive sport or actively participating in some form of physical activity at least two times a week. Although sport and exercise nutrition are a booming sector, the sports nutrition industry is plagued by lack of science-backed nutrition products. The product development process relies heavily on end-user engagement in order to develop novel foods. The aim of the survey was to find out the self-reported nutritional priorities of athletes and active individuals.
As per the results obtained from the survey, 58% of the participants reported taking nutritional supplements. The most commonly used supplements were multivitamins, followed by exercise-related supplements. Bioactive functional foods were used by 43% of the participants. “Enhanced muscular recovery” was the most prioritized choice of product claims in sports nutrition. Similarly, nutritional profile was the most sought-after feature in various food products, followed closely by “taste” and “accessibility.”
Hence, based on the survey, it may be concluded that health enthusiasts use evidence-based functional foods that focus on muscle recovery, endurance, and strength enhancement.
Source: Carey.C.C., Doyle.L., Lucey. A. Nutritional priorities, practices, and preferences of athletes and active individuals in the context of new product development in the sports nutrition sector. Frontiers in Sports and Active Living. Volume 5-2023.