Anna Melin

Anna Melin

Associate Professor
Department of Sport Science Faculty of Social Sciences
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My teaching and research within sports science mainly belongs in the field of natural science and specifically within sports nutrition and sports medicine. I started my doctoral studies after 15 years of clinical work as a certified sports dietitian within Danish elite sports (Team Danmark). My clinical experiences have contributed to my interest in generating evidence-based knowledge that may be useful for athletes, coaches, sports physiologists, nutritionists and others working in the field of sports medicine.

Teaching

I am the course coordinator of and mainly teach our courses in sports nutrition. (4IM115, 4IV015,1IV003,1IV209).

Research

My research is focused on sports nutrition, Relative Energy Deficiency in Sports (REDs), and eating disorders.

Relative Energy Deficiency in Sports (REDs) is a syndrome, caused by low energy availability with or without co-occurring eating disorders, and the research as of 2014 until today indicates that this is one of the most common nutrition related problems among female as well as male athletes. REDs is found in all sports requiring heavy training loads, but it is most frequently found in disciplines where body weight and body composition have an impact on performance, such as at endurance, weight category and aesthetic sport disciplines.

Problematic (severe and or long-term) low energy availability entails an increased risk of metabolic and endocrine adaptations and serious physiological implications such as early-onset osteoporosis, endothelial dysfunction, and dyslipidaemia as well as overload injuries. In a study among female endurance athletes, we found that approximately 60% were clinically verified with oligomenorrhea or amenorrhea due to low energy availability, and 45% had low bone mineral density. We also found that amenorrhea due to low energy availability has a negative impact on neuromuscular endurance.

REDs can be caused by or entail an increased risk of poor mental health such as depression, eating disorders and compulsive exercise behaviour, which in turn may aggravate the symptoms and complicate the treatment.

Publications

Selected publications

Article in journal (Refereed)

Article in journal (Other academic)

Article, review/survey (Refereed)

Chapter in book (Refereed)

  • Hansen, M., Dalgaard, L.B., Zebis, M.K., Gliemann, L., Melin, A.K., et al. (2018). The female handball player. Handball Sports Medicine : Basic Science, Injury Management and Return to Sport. Springer. 553-570.