These days, it seems as if the average 18 – 35-year old is obsessed with chasing the ‘gains’ as they call it. More and more young adults are now spending more time in the gym than ever before, and generally that’s a very good thing. If you’re looking to bulk up, fill out your Gym Shark vest and take some seriously impressive gym selfies for social media, it’s vital that you choose the correct supplement stack. Assuming that your diet and training are both on point, the next logical step is to consider supplements. No bodybuilder will buy supplements and not first choose a protein supplement, and it just so happens that whey protein is the most popular supplement of all. But what is it about whey protein that makes it so beneficial? Let’s find out, as we’ll now be looking at 3 benefits of whey protein powders.
Muscle growth and recovery
Bodybuilders consume more protein than the average person. They do this because protein is essential for muscle growth and repair. But why? Well, when we lift weights in the gym, we are actually destroying our muscles and wearing them down.
With each rep we are placing the muscles under pressure and causing microscopic rips and tears in the tissue. We build muscle in a state of recovery, as the body tries to rebuild the muscle tissue to be bigger and stronger than it once was. It does this via a process known as protein synthesis. In order for protein synthesis to occur however, the body needs protein and the amino acids making up protein molecules. Using a protein powder supplement is a great way to give your body the materials it needs to recover.
After training, protein and glycogen levels in the muscle cells are extremely low, if not empty. They have also expanded slightly so they can actually temporarily absorb more nutrients. Your muscles are at their most vulnerable after a workout, which is why it’s so important to drink a post-workout protein shake.
Whey protein is the perfect post-workout supplement because it is fast digesting and is rapidly absorbed. This means you can give your muscles what they need in record time. Some bodybuilders will even drink their shakes with added dextrose sugar, to create an insulin spike to help force more of the proteins and amino acids into the cells even quicker.
Finally, the last reason why whey protein supplements are considered so popular is because they are so convenient. One shake provides around 35g – 40g of protein per serving. To get that much protein from food would require you to consume a large meal.
That’s all well and good at some points in the day, but at other times we don’t have the time nor the motivation to eat yet another plate of chicken and broccoli. This is where a protein shake is so ideal. Simply add to mix or water, mix or blend, and enjoy. It really is as simple as that.