Feb 13, 2024
Air Force nutrition knowledge linked to G-test success

air force

According to a recent study published in Scientific Reports, Air Force cadets with proper nutrition knowledge and who were physically active performed better during the Gravitational Acceleration Test (G-test).

They were also found to remain conscious during the test. The Air Force plans to apply these results for future tests.

A recent story from News-Medical.net detailed the study’s findings. Below is an excerpt from the News-Medical.net story.

Research in sports nutrition and training has applications in military training and nutritional management to maintain optimal physical and mental functioning while preventing disease. This requires an interdisciplinary approach that includes exercise, rest, recovery, and diet.

Soldiers in the Air Force work under extreme physiological stress in aerial environments, where they may suffer from hypoxia, hearing loss, flight illusion, cognitive dissonance, and gravity-induced loss of consciousness (G-LOC).

Enduring G-tests requires adequate nutrition and physical strength, but further understanding is required of how physical activity and strength can be improved among Air Force cadets.

Participants in the study were male senior cadets at the Air Force Academy in the Republic of Korea who took the G-test in 2022.

Those who were injured or unwilling to participate were excluded from the study. All sampled participants followed the same training, sleep, meal, and work schedules.

The G-test involved participants sitting in a cockpit-style seat of a high-speed centrifugal motion gondola for 30 seconds at an acceleration of 5G.

Losing consciousness before 30 seconds meant failing the test. Based on their test results, participants were divided into those who passed the 30 s G-test (GP) and those who failed (GF).

Body strength was measured three months before the G-test, while body composition was assessed five days prior on an empty stomach. The strength test included a three-kilometer run, sit-ups, and push-ups.

Participants were asked to avoid high-intensity activities and sleep sufficiently on the previous day. Measures taken included skeletal muscle mass, body fat percentage, body fat mass, body mass index, height, and weight.

Participants also completed questionnaires assessing their physical activity levels and knowledge of nutrition-related topics. The data were analyzed using independent sample t-tests and logistic regressions at a significance level of 5%.

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Of the 105 male cadets who participated in the study, those who passed the G-test weighed, on average, 3.5 kg more than those who failed and had a slightly higher BMI (24.05 compared to 23.08 on average).

Skeletal muscle mass, though higher in the GP group, was not significantly different. Similarly, GP cadets had lower body fat mass and body fat ratio, but the difference was not significant.

Cadets who passed were more physically active, working out for 22.2 minutes daily and 1.1 more reps each week on average. However, they did not perform significantly better in the physical strength evaluation.

To read the full story from News-Medical.net, click here.