Nutrition, endocrinology, and body composition during space flight.

Nutrition research (New York, N.Y.)

PubMedID: 11541547

Lane HW, Gretebeck RJ, Smith SM. Nutrition, endocrinology, and body composition during space flight. Nutr Res. 1998;18(11):1923-34.
Space flight induces endocrine changes that perturb metabolism. This altered metabolism affects both the astronauts' body composition and the nutritional requirements necessary to maintain their health. During the last 25 years, a combination of studies conducted on Skylab (the first U.S. space laboratory), U.S. Shuttle flights, and Soviet and Russian flights provides a range of data from which general conclusions about energy and protein requirements can be drawn. We have reviewed the endocrine data from those studies and related it to changes in body composition. From these data it appears that protein and energy intake of astronauts are similar to those on Earth. However, a combination of measures, including exercise, appropriate diet, and, potentially, drugs, is required to provide the muscle health needed for long duration space flight.