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Should I use protein shakes??

Some people like to use them, others don’t. Some people argue that you can gain a sufficient amount of protein through whole foods. This obviously depends on the intensity of you training, your targets and goals, and if you want to eat chicken breast until its coming out of your ears.

This article is pro shakes, and explains their benefits, the best type of protein to consume, how much to take, and when you should drink them.

More and more people are drinking protein shakes or taking protein supplements. Just walk through the local supermarket and you will find a never ending amount of ‘high protein cereals’, and other protein packed supplements. Chocolate bars have now taken notice of the protein boom, with mars and snickers promoting new ‘protein’ bars. The amount of products available can be extremely confusing, not to mention misleading. Hopefully this blog post will help you decide what type of protein will best suit you and your training.

Eating protein in solid form is still the best way to fulfil your protein needs, however this isn’t always manageable with today’s busy lifestyles. It can take a lot of preparation and dedication to meet these requirements. And this is why protein supplements were invented.

Making and drinking a protein shake can carry a high amount of protein, and also take no time at all. Literally 1 minute…2 at the most. This is why they are so highly thought of in the fitness and nutrition world.

THE BENEFITS

Why do we need to drink these shakes? Your muscles need protein. The more you work out, and the more weight you lift, the more protein your muscles require to help repair and rebuild. Proteins are also used to manufacture hormones, nucleic acids, and immune-system components. Without an adequate amount of protein, our bodies can’t put together the structures that make up every cell, tissue, and organ, nor can it generate the biochemical substances needed for cardiovascular function, muscle contraction, growth, and healing.

Taking a protein supplement directly after workout out is extremely effective as it can repair the muscles asap. While it takes longer for solid food to be digested and processed, a protein supplement, such as a protein shake, can be digested very quickly and start the rebuilding process of the ‘micro tears’ your muscles have had to endure. It can take roughly 30 minutes for the protein shake to reach your muscles after ingestion. That’s efficient if you ask me!!

WHICH PROTEIN IS THE BEST CHOICE?

Whey protein is now a fan favourite for helping to assist training and people seeking for an improvement in their physique, and also health.  To discover what type of protein is best, you can measure the quality of a protein by its Biological Value (BV), which is the amount of nitrogen (body protein in grams) replaceable by 100 grams of protein in the adult diet.

Most scientists involved with protein research agree that the higher the BV, the more efficiently the protein is digested and used within the body. This will result in lean muscle mass being obtained if other variables are kept in check, such as the amount of calories you consume, and the amount and intensity of exercise performed.

Whey protein is a complete protein with a very high biological value, meaning it contains essential and nonessential amino acids and contains the highest quantity of branched chain amino acids (BCAA’s) found in nature. While BV is important in selecting a good source of protein, don’t just use that as a guide. Take into account the amount of sweeteners and sugars, and any other ‘hidden’ ingredients.

HOW MUCH SHOULD YOU TAKE IN?

1 gram of protein per pound of body weight is the recommended amount of protein for muscle growth (for instance, if you weigh 200 pounds than the minimum amount of protein you should take in is 200 grams of protein for muscle growth). If you consume more, this will aid muscle growth. Any excess protein in the body is not stored and therefore is excreted from your body.

WHEN ARE THE BEST TIMES TO TAKE IN PROTEIN?

I would recommend that the best time to consume protein is almost directly after you work out. However it has been argued that you have a 2 hour window after exercise to replenish your muscles with the protein they need to repair. Seeing as your muscles will start to repair almost immediately after your workout, the sooner you intake protein, the better.

It is also recommended that you continue to eat regular small meals after a workout. This provides the body with a constant stream of protein to help muscles recover. Before bed is another important time to intake a slow burning protein. A casein protein shake, cottage cheese, or even a glass of milk will help keep your protein levels up throughout the night while you sleep. This also highlights the importance of breakfast, as you won’t have eaten for 8-12 hours. Try and have a high protein breakfast every day.

So, protein is a vital component of life. Without it we wouldn’t be here. We need protein just to survive, but when we partake in exercise, our muscles will need extra protein to recover efficiently. Therefore a protein supplement shake is the perfect way to intake the sufficient amount of protein, which is easily digestible, to repair your muscles as quickly as possible. So if you workout and exercise regularly, I strongly recommend you use a protein shake supplement to help you achieve your goals.