If you want to start training intensely or are just looking to lose weight, you might be advised to start taking more protein. Proteins are the building blocks of the muscles in our bodies, and they play a critical role in recovery after intense exercise and the repair and regrowth of worn-out or damaged muscles. But that is usually the extent of what most people know about proteins. In this article, we will answer some questions people have about proteins, some of which you might not have considered before.
So, What Is Protein?
Proteins are defined as large molecules (macromolecules) that are made of amino acids. While amino acids can exist by themselves, and are used in the body for the synthesis of proteins, they are not usually consumed as raw amino acids. Proteins make up all the cells in our bodies, and this is why they are known as the building blocks of muscles. Because of how important they are, there is no bodily function that can happen without the involvement of proteins.
Proteins can also act as fuel and are therefore important for overall health. Lowering your consumption of proteins can be detrimental to your health. This is because your body utilizes proteins once your supply of glucose runs out in a process known as gluconeogenesis.
Once this starts to happen, you might start seeing a breakdown in proteins, especially those in rich muscles, leading to a loss in muscle mass. It is important to remember that this only happens when you are starting or are consuming food with very low carbohydrate amounts.
Why Do You Need to Consume Enough Proteins?
In addition to helping with overall health, proteins are important for strong bones, cartilage, and muscles. Proteins help in keeping your skin, nails, and hair rejuvenated and nourished. Proteins also help the body heal (recovery after exercise or injury) and have also been shown to help men with low libido and women who experience hormonal imbalances.
Why Do People Consume Protein After Workouts?
When you are in the gym or at home working out, you are tearing different muscles with each lift or exercise that you do. The tears can happen in the muscles you are working on or in different muscles if you have a bad workout form. The protein you need to consume after vigorous exercise can help any muscles that are compromised or torn heal and recover quickly. It is, therefore, recommended to consume post-workout protein about an hour after completing your workout.
One of the best sources of protein after a workout is a whey shake. Due to how the proteins in whey are formulated, it gets into the cells quickly and is then transported to the muscles that need it the most for the repair and replacement of worn-out or damaged muscles and cells.
Where Can I Get Some Protein?
The most obvious source of protein is your diet. Proteins are available in meats, vegetables, and other sources. For meats, you can choose from turkey, beef, chicken, and more. Plant-based protein sources work best for vegans, and they include vegetables such as peas and grains such as soybeans.
Those who are looking for fast-acting proteins should consider whey and products containing high-quality absorption enhanced proteins. One such protein source is ioWhey, which has been carefully formulated to increase the bioavailability of protein and has a higher proven absorption rate than traditional whey. You can click here for more information on bioavailability of protein and a comparison of ioWhey and other protein products. IoWhey and related protein sources such as ioProtein and ioPea are designed and developed by Ingredients Optimized, and they are meant to be included in products to increase protein availability. These protein sources can be included in foods and snacks, drinks, or consumed as powders.
What Exactly Is Whey?
Whey is a by-product of milk. It is created by curdling and straining milk to end up with an almost pure protein source. Whey has been used as a protein source for the longest time due to its fast absorption rate, but it is not being overtaken by-products that are enhanced with the means to provide better bioavailability, absorption rates, and taste than traditional whey.
Do You Need to Consume More Protein When Training?
It depends. The amount of protein you eat depends on a lot of factors including your biology, activity levels, and diet. If you are moderately active you do not need to increase your protein intake because most of us already consume more protein than we need. However, if you are very active or train more than once a day, you should increase your protein intake. This can be through adding foods high in protein to your diet or using supplements.
To see maximum benefit, it is always a good idea to spread your protein intake throughout the day and remember to pair any protein you take with a healthy amount of carbohydrates. This ensures that you have enough calories from the carbohydrates for energy, which leaves enough protein for growth repair and recovery.
How Much Protein Should I Consume?
Because most people already consume enough protein, we are going to focus on those who really need to monitor their protein intake, such as athletes and highly active individuals. Protein requirements are often skewed due to marketing, but nutritionists advise that highly active individuals consume 1.4-2.0 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight per day. Remember that this recommendation is for highly active individuals who exercise regularly and who are already eating a balanced diet.
It is also important to remember that your maximum protein intake should be about 25 grams a day, spaced out throughout the day. Individuals who train a lot more intensely can also benefit from additional protein intake, although this is not advised before speaking to a qualified health professional, nutritionist, or dietician.
Is it Possible to Consume Too Much Protein?
Yes, it is possible to consume too much protein. Protein, as well as other food classes such as carbohydrates and fats, has calories. If you consume too much protein, you will gain weight. This is especially true if your protein intake does not match your level of activity.
It is also important to note that consuming too much protein can cause other issues such as gastric distress and can put a lot of strain on your kidneys. Remember that protein consumption is not always about how much you consume but how well you utilize the protein you consume, either as an energy source or for recovery after exercise.
Can Proteins Help Me Create Lean Muscles?
Proteins cannot help you gain lean muscles, not by themselves. Lean muscles are created by resistance training. Proteins only help you recover after workouts and repair any injured, inflamed, or torn muscles during your workouts, so you can keep working out for longer. It is the combination of proteins and working out that leads to lean muscle gain.
Protein is among the most important nutrients we should be consuming, especially when we would like to start working out or losing weight. It is a great energy source and is essential for the repair of the body’s muscles and cells after challenging exercise.
Published on Holr Magazine