This review updates and complements the review of energy balance and body composition in the Proceedings of the 2003 IOC Consensus Conference on Sports Nutrition. It argues that the concept of energy availability is more useful than the concept of energy balance for managing the diets of athletes. It then summarizes recent reports of the existence, aetiologies, and clinical consequences of low energy availability in athletes. This is followed by a review of recent research on the failure of appetite to increase ad libitum energy intake in compensation for exercise energy expenditure. The review closes by summarizing the implications of this research for managing the diets of athletes.