Whey protein shakes are very popular in power sports. While it is important to consume adequate protein to build, maintain and recover muscle tissues, protein requirements can be easily achieved through a normal diet. So why everyone is paying so much for these products?
Whey protein is the most commonly used protein in protein shakes. The advantage of a whey protein shake is that it is faster absorbed than any other protein and contains a high dose of leucine, an amino acid that is known to trigger muscle synthesis. Together with leucine, whey protein contains other amino acids that are needed to repair and build muscle tissues.
Another big advantage is that whey protein is a quick fix, you don’t need to cook a meal or prepare a snack. It’s easy to take with you to training in a shaker and add water when you need it.
The dosage to dissolve in water or milk depends on your body size. Small athletes have enough with 15g or 1/2 scoop, while bigger athletes will need 30g or 1 scoop of whey protein. Drink the shake shortly after training so your body can start recovering and building muscle tissues.
Do not overuse protein shakes. Large quantities of protein are not harmful, but it makes your daily food intake rather monotonous for a given calorie budget. Remember that you also need a certain amount of carbohydrates, fats, vitamins, and minerals to allow training adaptation and optimal performance. Therefore don’t drink more than one or two shakes a day and get the rest of your protein from whole foods.
As with any supplement you take, you need to be careful that the product you buy doesn’t contain substances that are prohibited by the anti-doping regulations. Find out more about this topic.
- International society of sports nutrition position stand 2017: protein and exercise
- International society of sports nutrition position stand 2007: protein and exercise
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