The 6 most important effects of protein shakes

You read everywhere how important protein shakes are. But do you know exactly why, and what effects protein powders have?
19.03.2019

effects of protein shakes

Athletes - whether strength or endurance athletes - need to make sure they take in adequate quantities and quality of protein, which is a basic requirement for recovery, the key to progress. Without proper recovery, you can't put maximum stress on your body, which won't be able to adapt to it and you may end up overtrained, your immune system may weaken and diseases or other issues may arise. These days, it's not easy to find the right protein shake, because a wide range is available and everybody recommends a different one. At the same time, you need to know that different phases of training and different times of the day require different protein sources. This article will tell you all about why it's important to take in protein, what types of protein there are and how they are different, how to choose the one that suits your purposes best and when and how to take it in to achieve maximum effect.

What would happen without protein?

What's the matter with not taking in sufficient amounts of protein? If your muscles don't get the necessary building blocks, they won't have anything to build from, so they won't grow, but the training will put a stress on your body. That leaves you with stress only and no recovery. It can have various health effects such as a compromised immune system, inflammations, chronic fatigue, sleep disorders, etc. Also, it's not only your muscles which need protein; amino acids are also important building blocks for your organs, tissues, connective tissues and certain parts of your immune system or nervous system, and in almost every part of your body.

The effects of protein shake

Why is it beneficial to drink protein shake?

1, It helps you build your muscles:

protein shakes contain amino acids which are essential for muscle building, and they contain all of them, too. During the recovery of your muscle fibres injured from training, these are the amino acids which support rebuilding and preparing your muscles for the next training session, which also means muscle growth if exposed to appropriate stress. It's important that you should primarily take in protein with solid food, which - after your training or other especially important times of the day, such as after waking up or before going to bed - you may replace with a protein shake for fast and effective absorption and adequate quality. If you want to know more about taking in protein in the evening, read our article Why to Take In Protein in the Evening.

2, It helps you lose weight:

When used as a supplement for an appropriate low-calorie diet, protein shakes help you prevent losing muscle mass and support fat loss in the case of overweight people. And that will lead to a change in body composition. Note, however, that you won't lose weight simply by drinking protein shake. During a diet, maintaining muscle mass is essential, as it also helps you maintain normal metabolism. Muscle tissues need a lot of energy, which means that, by default, a bigger muscle mass burns more calories during the day. Also, it's muscles that make you toned and tight, so you won't only lose weight, but also shape your figure if you complement it with the right physical exercise. If you want to read more tips and learn more about the best protein sources, don't miss out on our article Why to Take in a Lot of Protein during a Diet, either.

3, It strengthens the immune system:

Among amino acids, it's glutamine that plays a particularly important role in maintaining a healthy immune system. Also, glutamine accounts for 60% of your muscles, so it's very important for muscle building, too. A healthy immune system is essential for training, because if you can't overcome harmful free radicals, inflammations and viruses, you'll easily contract diseases, become weaker and won't be able to complete your workout, or if you do, it will only make you even weaker and enhance the symptoms of your illness, making it more serious and prolonging your recovery.

4, It lowers blood pressure:

Studies have shown that a daily whey protein intake of about 30 g for 6-8 weeks reduced blood pressure in patients suffering from high blood pressure. Smaller quantities of protein did not produce the same result. However, studies focusing on drinks containing added protein have also proved the phenomenon. Thus, increasing protein intake did not only reduce the risk of high blood pressure, but also that of other circulatory diseases resulting therefrom. Circulatory diseases are among the leading causes of death globally, mostly resulting from hypertension.

5, Cholesterol-reducing effect:

Several studies focusing on overweight men and women have shown that consuming whey protein for 12 weeks reduced blood fat and insulin levels. Also, a significant decrease was found in overall cholesterol levels and the amount of LDL cholesterol, also known as the "bad" cholesterol. During the 12-week study, the effects of whey protein was compared with the effects of casein, but it did not produce the same results. High cholesterol level is also very common and a frequent cause of vascular occlusion, as cholesterol builds up in blood vessels. That's an especially serious issue when the arteries supplying the heart with blood are blocked, causing a heart attack.

6, Appetite-reducing effect:

protein intake reduces appetite, because digesting protein requires time and energy from your body, and you'll feel full after having protein. Studies have also shown that after adding protein shake to the participants' diet, the total calorie intake decreased, compared to the placebo group and the group with increased carbohydrate intake. The study also had significant findings with regard to casein intake. Protein digests and remains in the stomach for longer, but it also increases the release of the hormone responsible for feeling full. Also, protein intake reduces blood sugar levels.

how important protein shakes are?

Is too much protein harmful?

There are no verified research findings proving that excessive protein intake has any adverse effect on healthy individuals. However, in the case of kidney disease, for example, when even the medical prescription is low protein intake, the excessive use of protein shakes can worsen the condition. The daily recommendation of protein intake is 3 g/bodyweight kg, which you should take in with not more than 2 or 3 protein shakes and the rest with solid food. The majority of the issues arising from excessive protein intake are the result of drinking protein shake instead of solid protein sources. Taking in protein in a liquid and fast-absorbing form may put excessive stress on your digestive system. As a consequence, those who are susceptible may experience bloating and diarrhoea. The excessive use of protein, often not from the right protein source, may cause acne and other blemishes on those who are sensitive to it. These are issues which you can easily prevent if you follow the recommended use and you are aware of your health condition. Note that if you suffer from any disease which restricts your protein intake, you should definitely seek medical advice.

Which protein to choose and how to use it

Protein shakes are best consumed mixed with water. The recommended amount of liquid indicated on the packaging ensures a nice flavour; however, your taste may be different, so you can use more or less liquid, as you like. Use a shaker or a mixer to achieve a smooth consistency. You can combine it with fruits and cottage cheese, if you want to take in other nutrients, too. Mixing protein powder with milk slows down the absorption and increases the calorie intake, which may be useful for increasing mass, but during a diet, in a shredding phase, you should use water.

Don't drink more than 2 or 3 shakes a day. You should definitely drink one of them right after your workout. If you only drink one, it should be after workout. The other time of the day when your body can make the best use of protein is in the morning, after getting up, when it is starving for nutrients after a long sleep. If you want to prevent your muscles from breaking down during sleep, you should choose a slow-absorbing protein to replace or following a dinner.

Whey proteins are the fastest absorbing shakes, recommended after workout, such as Iso Whey Zero 100% Pure Whey. We recommend Casein Zero before bedtime, because of its slower absorption.

If you train a lot and feel exhausted all the time or easily get ill, you should consider whether you take in enough protein. However, if you suffer from any food allergy or intolerance, you should also take that into account when choosing your protein supplement.

If you have lactose intolerance, we recommend whey isolates and hydralysates; alternatively, you may also choose beef protein or a plant-based protein source. If you suffer from milk allergy or milk protein allergy, the solution is definitely some beef protein or plant-based protein. For vegetarians, we recommend plant-based proteins.

BioTechUSA proteins

Each BioTechUSA protein consists of safe, of age and sex. One protein shake a day may also be a useful supplement in teen athletes' diet; adults can drink up to 2 or 3 servings. It is also recommended for the elderly in order to maintain healthy muscles, connective tissues and organs, as well as muscle mass.

Iso Whey Zero is a whey protein isolate, recommended to those on a diet and those who want high-quality, fast-absorbing protein. The product is also safe to use by those suffering from lactose intolerance. Each serving contains 93 calories, of which 21 g is protein. The product is free of added sugar, and is, therefore, suitable for use during a pre-competition diet. It is available in various flavours and packaging sizes, from single-serving to 2,280 g packaging.

Casein Zero can also be included in a low-calorie diet. Because of its slow absorption, evening use is recommended. Compared to whey protein, it has a pudding-like consistency and needs much more liquid to dissolve. Like Iso Whey Zero, it's free of lactose, gluten and sugar. The product is available in various flavours and packaging sizes.

Beef protein is a hydrolysed protein peptide formula derived from beef, with a special amino acid base.  Beef protein is a protein source which digests easier than low-fat beef such as steak; it absorbs well, and being an animal protein, it has a great biological value. Although the product has low fat content (0.6 g/serving), the coconut fat it contains is an excellent source of MCT (medium-chain triglycerides). Beef Protein is an excellent source of protein for anybody; it contributes to maintaining healthy bones and muscle mass, as well as to muscle mass growth, for those looking for non-dairy protein. It's also ideal for a paleo diet, as well as for those following a dairy-free diet.

 

If you want to ensure your body the necessary nutrients, you do sports, you're on a diet, or you have a stressful life, you may want to consider including protein shakes in your diet. It contributes to increasing muscle mass, to maintaining muscles during a diet, it strengthens the immune system and reduces cholesterol levels and blood pressure. Also, it's available in a wide range of flavours, so you'll surely find the right one for you. It's particularly important for athletes to take in the necessary amount of protein in order to support recovery and progress.


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