Fats in sports nutrition

reviewed / examined during preparation

Position of the Working Group on Sports Nutrition of the German Nutrition Society e. V. (DGE)

Fat intake and nutrition recommendations for nutrition Compared to the importance of carbohydrates in endurance and weight training sports, the amount of fat consumed and their quality play a fairly subordinate role for the work and health of aspiring athletes and competitive athletes. Therefore, basically the same recommendations apply as for the healthy general population.

There are international recommendations for absolute intake (in g / kg body weight) [KG]/ d) for carbohydrates and proteins in endurance and weight training, there is only a directive to supply fat, not to exceed 30% (En%) and not to fall below 20% [1], Specifying the lower limit should ensure that:

1. sufficient or essential fatty acids and fat soluble vitamins are provided or absorbed,
2. there is a feeling of satiety between meals,
3. Intramuscular triglycerides replenish after prolonged stress.

The upper limit on fat intake in ambitious popular and competitive sports is the goal of 30% of healthy adolescents and adults for the prevention of diet-related diseases [2, 3], People with increased energy demand (level of physical activity [PAL] > 1.7) may require higher percentages [3], However, international societies say v.d. a. With regard to endurance sports, limit fat intake to 30% by weight, taking into account the fact that carbohydrate energy delivery is paramount [1].


This position paper presents the current state of scientific knowledge about recommended fat intake in aspirational popular and competitive sports. In addition, nutritional strategies (fat filling-Methods) and dietary supplements, which should affect lipid metabolism during exercise.

Recommendation for absolute fat intake in sport (g / kg body weight) [KG]/ d), as is customary for international carbohydrates and proteins, has not yet been established. However, there is consensus on the part of sports medical societies that fat consumption, especially in endurance sports, should not exceed 30% (En%) and should not fall below 20%.

Before the competition, some endurance athletes exercise fat fillingStrategies, including a ketogenic diet. This is discouraging because there is no scientific evidence to improve performance and this is an unbalanced diet. Also, the use of nutritional supplements to improve the availability / oxidation of fatty acids is generally not advocated.

keywords: Sports Nutrition, Fats, fat filling, ketogenic diet, caffeine, carnitine, fish oil, MCT

The full article can also be found in NUTRITION SHOW 9/2019 from pages M538 to M545.