These days, protein shakes and preworkout supplements are being consumed everywhere around the world.
At first, they were only being digested by avid athletes and fitness fanatics. Fast-forward to the current time, and they are being used by all types of people. Ranging from bodybuilders, powerlifters, people looking to lose weight to people who don’t work out at all.
These are the benefits of protein shakes for muscle growth and fat loss.
What is a protein shake?
A protein shake is a drink in which protein powder is mixed with either water or a sweet liquid like orange juice.
It’s a supplement. Meaning, it’s not meant and should not serve as a replacement for your original diet. They can, however, be a convenient way to add more protein into your regular diet.
That’s good since it’s hard for most people to reach their optimal daily protein requirement for muscle growth and fat loss due to work, hobby’s, kids and the list goes on.
They can either be bought in pre-made liquid shakes or as powder. If you buy the powder, then you’ve got to mix it yourself with water or another ingredient in order to turn it into a liquid shake.
Many types of protein powder exist. We will only talk about the most prevalent ones below to keep it clear-cut and simple.
They can be used for weight gain, but also to lose weight.
Different protein types
While multiple different protein types exist, whey protein is probably the most well-known.
This is the quickest absorbable source of dairy-based protein out there.
It contains all the essential amino acids to promote muscle growth and recovery.
Casein protein is a slow absorbable source of dairy-based protein.
It contains all the essential amino acids to promote muscle growth and recovery.
Soy protein is a plant-based protein that’s extracted out of the soja bean.
It contains all the essential amino acids to promote muscle growth and recovery. It has the essential amino acids Glutamine and Arginine. Furthermore, it also contains some soy isoflavones, which may have health benefits.
Do protein shakes work for muscle growth and fat loss?
To make a long answer short, yes, protein shakes work for muscle growth and fat loss. Especially when you combine them with these 10 best exercises for muscle growth and strength.
Protein shakes only help for muscle gain when you’re deficient in protein
However, they will only help you to grow muscle mass if your protein intake through natural food sources is deficient.
A lot of people don’t have a balanced diet, which means that the majority of us are actually on a protein deficit. In those cases, one or multiple protein shakes each day can help them get up to a normal, or, if you’re an athlete, high level of protein intake.
Ideally, a protein shake should be taken right after working out. It’s at this time that our body needs protein the most as building blocks in order to repair the damaged muscle tissue. The protein helps our body to start recovering.
Protein shakes without working out will not make you grow muscle mass
It should be noted that taking protein shakes in itself will not build muscle.
Our body requires an acute stressor and ample protein to build muscle mass. A stimulus in the form of weight lifting or another form of resistance training is required in order for our bodies to grow and adapt.
This recovery process wherein our body adapt and grows stronger is what we call supercomensation.
The benefits of taking protein shakes for muscle growth
Increased muscle mass
The biggest benefit of taking protein shakes is that it allows us to build muscle mass. That’s because protein is one of the most important building blocks for muscle growth.
If you are protein deficient, then your muscle growth will be stunted. Sufficient amounts of protein will result in getting stronger and more muscular when combined with resistance training.
The amount you should ideally consume is dependent on your body weight, your activity level, and your goals.
The largest amount of protein that is proven to be effective is 1.6 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight. No additional benefits were found from consuming more than 1.6 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight. Nevertheless, 3.5 g per kg of body weight is typically tolerated well without issues.
The benefits of taking protein shakes for fat loss
Protein rich food and supplements help us feel fuller for a longer period of time, which in turn reduces our urge to eat. This means that we will consume fewer calories as a result.
Consuming enough protein boosts your metabolic rate. This means that a higher metabolic rate means you’ll burn more calories without having to do anything special for it other than consuming enough protein.
Due to this, we will lose fat and weight in general. Having an adequate amount of protein in our bodies can help us maintain a healthy body weight and lower our body fat as an added benefit.
Fat lossWeight loss in itself typically also results in fat loss. That’s because losing weight in general is usually taken from multiple deposits such as fat, muscle, and fluids. It’s never solely one of the above.
It helps you lose body fat by boosting your metabolism and reducing your appetite.
You’ll eat less when your appetite is decreased, thus, lowering your calorie intake.
A boosted metabolism lets you burn more calories without having to do something extra. Other ways to increase your metabolism is exercising and getting an adequate amount of sleep.
Protein shake benefits
Quicker recovery after working out
Protein is necessary and essential to help repair damaged muscle tissue.
Having an adequate amount can help speed up your recovery process after working out.
This way, muscle soreness goes away at a faster rate, you’ll regain your strength and energy levels quicker, and you’ll be able to train again sooner than if you didn’t have access to the needed amount of protein.
Protein shakes digest faster than solid food does.
This means it’s best to consume a protein shake immediately after finishing your workout.
It only takes about 30 minutes for the shake to reach the muscles in our body. This is much faster than a solid meal can.
We want protein in our muscle cells as fast as possible after training in order to start repairing the microtears the workout inflicted to our muscles and to start the recovery phase.
Take note that some protein types digest faster than others.
Boosts the metabolism
Digesting enough protein boosts your metabolism. This means you’ll burn more calories just by merit of having a faster metabolism.
Burning more calories means you’ll lose more weigh than if your metabolism was slower. Thus, it can help you to manager your weight.
Some folks find it hard to eat enough calories (they do exist), or to ingest enough protein.
Our lives are regularly hectic, and not everyone is disciplined enough, or has the time to stay on top of their diet all the time.
Protein shakes can offer solace to increase your intake to a healthy degree. Your optimal level will be dependent on your goal, and how active you are.
Taking a protein shake before or after training is effortless. You can drink it at home, or bring it with you to the gym. The possibilities are endless since you can basically carry it everywhere.
Before, you had to eat a lot of meat, and fruits such as nuts and avocados to get the needed amount of protein to build muscle, lose fat, or even just to be healthy.
Now, a simple shake each day can solve this issue entirely. Although it should be noted that there’s no substitute for a healthy diet. Protein shakes are a supplement, not a meal replacement.
How to take protein powder?
- Select the protein powder of your choosing
- Mix the appropriate amount of powder with water or any other liquid that you prefer
- Drink the shake
It should also be mentioned that ready to drink protein shakes also exist which means you don’t have to go to the trouble of mixing and preparing the shake yourself.
When should I drink protein shakes?
The best time to drink protein shakes is about 20 to 60 minutes after working out since your body needs the building blocks to recover the most right after training.
This time period right after training is what we call the “anabolic window.” That’s the perfect moment to ingest proteins by eating food or consuming supplements in order to get the most out of these nutrients.
Are protein shakes good for you?
Can I drink protein shakes every day?
Do I need protein shakes to lose weight?
However, they can aid you to lose fat since they lower your appetite and boost your metabolism.
Research shows that protein shakes are one of the few supplements that actually works for both muscle growth and fat loss.
Whereas a lot of supplementations out there do next to nothing or are just blatant scams, a sufficient amount of protein is essential whether your goal is building muscle mass, increasing strength, or fat loss.
Most people can definitely benefit from consuming one or multiple shakes each day because a lot of us are protein deficient without even realizing it. That’s because our modern day diets unfortunately leave a lot to be desired.