A post-workout protein shake might not help your muscles to recover after an intense workout, according to a new study.
Many who go to the gym regularly and lift weights will often consume a protein shake after their workout session to repair their muscles. However, a new study, conducted by a team from the United Kingdom’s University of Lincoln, claims these shakes are not very effective at building muscle or helping recovery.
30 men between the ages of 20 and 30 participated in the study. Everyone chosen for the study has a year or more experience with resistance training.
For the study, the team divided the participants into three groups:
* One group consumed a whey hydrolysate drink
* The second group consumed a milk drink
* The third group consumed a flavoured carbohydrate drink
The groups had to consume their assigned beverages after performing an intensive resistance training session.
Participants had to rate their levels of muscle soreness after the workout and finish strength and power assessments, which included throwing a medicine ball while sitting and jumping as high as they could.
Consuming a protein shake after a workout caused participants muscle soreness and reduction in muscle function. The results revealed all participants reported to have had extremely high levels of muscle soreness. In the physical assessment tests, participants were found to have areduction in muscle function and power.
According to the researchers, protein-based shakes and milk-based shakes were both found to be ineffective in helping muscles.
“While proteins and carbohydrates are essential for the effective repair of muscle fibres following intensive strength training, our research suggests that varying the form of protein immediately following training does not strongly influence the recovery response or reduce muscle pain,” study author Thomas Gee, a program leader of strength and conditioning in sport at the University of Lincoln, told a news portal.
Adding, “We would hypothesize that well balanced daily nutrition practices would influence recovery from delayed onset muscle soreness to a greater extent.”
While the findings are insightful, experts note that more research is needed as the study was small. Further investigation is needed to fully understand why this occurs and what can be done or in place of protein shakes after a workout.
The study's findings were originally published in the Journal of Human Kinetics.
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