Br J Sports Med 46:457 doi:10.1136/bjsm.2010.073064
  • Editorials

Fasting and sports: a summary statement of the IOC workshop

  1. Pamela Vennard4
  1. 1 School of Sport, Exercise and Health Sciences, Loughborough University, Loughborough, UK
  2. 2 Khuola Hospital, Muscat, Sultanate of Oman
  3. 3 Ankara University Medicine, Ankara, Turkey
  4. 4 London 2010 Organising Committee, London, UK
  5. 5 Australian Institute of Sport, Canberra, Australia
  6. 6 University of Texas, Austin, Texas, USA
  7. 7 International Olympic Committee, Lausanne, Switzerland
  8. 8 IMASSA, Brétigny-sur-Orge, France
  9. 9 Singapore Sports Council, Singapore
  10. 10 University of the Basque Country, Bilbao, Spain
  11. 11 Kuwait University, Kuwait City, Kuwait
  12. 12 Loughborough University, Loughborough, UK
  1. Correspondence to Professor R J Maughan, School of Sport, Exercise and Health Sciences, Loughborough University, Loughborough LE11 3TU, UK; r.maughan{at}
  • Accepted 26 February 2010
  • Published Online First 25 November 2010

Fasting—the abstention from eating and drinking—is an integral part of all of the world's major cultures and religions, though the pattern of fasting and the rate of adherence both vary widely. Fasting is also practised by many individuals in the belief that health benefits will result. A fast may be total or partial and may be prolonged or intermittent: it may be practised at prescribed times of the year for a fixed duration or at the discretion of the individual.

Fasting of short duration or intermittent nature has little or no effect on the health or performance of most athletes, and an …

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