Year of Award


Document Type


Degree Type

Master of Science (MS)

Degree Name

Health and Human Performance (Exercise Science Option)

Department or School/College

Department of Health and Human Performance

Committee Chair

Blakely Brown

Committee Co-chair

Steve Gaskill

Commitee Members

Curtis Noonan




University of Montana


Plante, Nicole J., M.S., May 2007 Health and Human Performance Work shift food delivery strategies during arduous wildfire suppression Chairperson: Dr. Blakely Brown Co-Chairperson: Dr. Steve Gaskill PURPOSE: The purpose of this study was to compare two isocaloric feeding strategies for wildland firefighters (WLFF) on total kcal and macronutrient (e.g. carbohydrates, total fat and protein) intake, ratings of satisfaction, and food delivery system feasibility. METHODS: Fifty-two Type I and Type II wildland firefighters (WLFF) from five different Fire Crews participated in the study. Subjects consumed either the traditional sack lunch (SL) or shift-food (SF) ad lib during their work shift in a randomized cross-over design. Subjects reported ratings of satisfaction with each feeding strategy. The SL and SF nutrients were analyzed with Dietary Analysis 6.1 (Salem, OR, USA) and the USDA nutrition facts food label and both were entered into a food-item nutrient database in Microsoft Excel. Delivery method feasibility was examined through reported perception from on-site research director and research assistant. RESULTS: Subjects consumed significantly more kcals from the SF feeding strategy compared to SL feeding strategy [SF, 1701.7± 281.4 kcals and SL, 1333.7±356.4 kcals, p<0.05). There was a higher amount of fat and CHO kcals consumed in the SF group compared to the SL group [SF, 569.4±167.6 fat kcals and SL, 367.6±176.7 fat kcals; SF, 1010.8±247.3 CHO kcals and SL 725.2±238.4 CHO kcals, p<0.05]. There were no differences in protein consumed between groups. Survey data show that subjects prefer the SF over the SL for convenience, variety, satisfaction, appearance, and overall preference (p<0.05). Qualitative data indicated it is feasible to deliver adequate variety, choice, and decrease waste with the shift meal system. In addition, the SF delivery method is cost effective. CONCLUSION: The shift meal system provided greater nutrient variety and was more convenient to use than the current sack lunch meal system. WLFF’s expressed higher satisfaction, consumed more energy (e.g. kcals) and carbohydrates, with the SF vs. SL system. The SF system is a feasible way to deliver adequate energy and nutrients to WLFFs while increasing nutrient variety and decreasing food waste. Finally, the SF system is more cost effective than the SL meal.



© Copyright 2007 Nicole Jean Plante