B-60 Basic Science World Congress/Poster - Sports, Performance, and Injury Wednesday, May 31, 2017, 1: 00 PM - 6: 00 PM Room: Hall F
It is recognized that visual cognitive abilities is an important characteristic of athletic performance, however, testing, training and determination of factors that influence this ability has been elusive.
PURPOSE: The purpose of the Nutrition, Vision and Cognition in Sport Study (IONsport) is to determine the factors that explain the large difference in visual cognitive performance and training responses between elite and non-elite athletes.
METHODS: College age men and women performed 15 visual cognitive training sessions in 10 visits to the laboratory (all 10 visits within 15 days). On the days of training, all food intake was documented along with measures of body composition, sleep patterns, fluid intake and recent exercise. Longer term assessments of these and other factors were measured prior to initiating training. Mean nutritional intakes were calculated for the 10 days of food records.
RESULTS: Excluding results from the initial training session in which variability was high, participants increased visual cognitive performance by 27.5% (P<0.001) which was not significantly different (P>0.05) between men (32.1%) and women (24.1%). Linear regression was performed using select nutritional candidates (based on literature evidence and using mean 10 day intake) and non-nutritional factors to predict trained visual cognitive performance. Nutritional copper (r2=0.237, p=0.01) and percent body fat (r2=0.11, P=0.027) entered the significant model (P=0.001). Mean visual cognitive performance improvement for copper intakes that were 16-47%, 50-109% and 132-346% of the Dietary Reference Intake (Recommended Dietary Allowances, RDA) were 10.1%, 22.6% and 43.1%, respectively.
CONCLUSION: These results suggest that dietary copper intake at or below the RDA may impair visual cognitive training performance and more broadly suggest that visual cognitive performance is more than an innate ability.