Updated: Dec 3, 2022
The other day, one of my friends asked me when is the best time to drink a protein shake. She mentioned that she has a cousin who is drinking two protein shakes a day and she wonders if the time matters. According to her cousin, she needs to drink at least two shakes a day because she exercises a lot. She goes to the gym once a day, does Zumba twice a day and walks once a day.
I took my time to process the question and think about how I was about to respond to the question. I think it is important to explain to her how things work, so she make conclusions instead of only saying if it is good or bad or give her a specific time to drink protein shakes.
So I started explaining how protein works,
There is more than protein that your body needs to improve your body...
“Protein is a nutrient. All meats are protein, the muscle is protein. So when you digest protein what you really do is eating the nutrient that helps your muscles be repaired and make it grow. But there is more than that. There are different chemical reactions that happen for your muscles to be repaired. These chemical reactions need other nutrients such as vitamins and minerals to make the repair happen. So focusing on protein alone won’t be optimal to benefit from the consumption of protein to repair muscle and aid with muscle growth and weight loss.”
Go to this website to learn more about other nutrients you need for muscle repair: https://aminoco.com/blogs/recovery/vitamins-for-muscle-recovery
No because you are moving a lot, it means that you need more protein, especially if you are not challenging your muscles...
“Remember that protein repairs your muscles. When you are doing strength training, you are damaging your muscles- making microscopic tears. This is why you are sore. It makes sense that you need protein to repair muscles. But what happens if you are not damaging your muscles? Do you need extra protein?
Dancing to your favorite song all day is not the same as squatting, doing 5 sets of 15 repetitions with 300 pounds. Dancing will only challenge your muscle to move to certain speed applying some minimum resistance but not enough to micro tear the big muscle groups of your legs. (Unless you are a very unfit person, dancing will only help in the beginning. But the resistance is so minimal that your body will be used to it within a week.)
Therefore, there is no need to eat extra protein only because you are moving. Once again the reason why you may need “extra” protein is to repair your muscles.”
You are getting more than enough protein with the daily intake if you are already eating healthy…
“I am only guessing that, because you are already exercising and drinking protein shakes, you are eating healthy. You need around 100 grams of protein per day if you are an endurance athlete. You can get that in a meal with a 4 ounces meat cut. Usually if you eat more protein than your body needs, either it goes straight to the toilet or you store it as fat.”
Protein in a natural state is not the same as refined protein…
“Just like sugars, protein becomes refined when you remove it from its natural state. For example, sugars in fruits are good for many reasons. It comes with minerals, vitamins and fiber. Your body needs to break apart and digest every nutrient. About eighty percent of the fruit is water, so you can imagine how much sugar a fruit may have which is minimum.
Sugar alone will just be absorbed, the body will use whatever it needs in the moment and store the rest as fat in your liver and body, especially when you eat more than your body needs. And there is no question that it is easy to over earth sugar when it is in a refined state.
The same goes with protein. But your body uses protein differently than sugar. Sugar is used as energy which your body can metabolize fast if it needs to. For example if you are heavily exercising. However, to repair muscles is a longer process that requires time. Therefore, the protein you get from protein shakes intoxicates the liver, you store it as fat and the rest you take it straight to the toilet.”
There is no benefit from a protein shake; you are wasting your money and intoxicating your liver…
“When I started lifting weights, I believed the protein myth. I used to drink at least two protein shakes a day and many times I drank three. I was and I still am very passionate about weight lifting, so I thought that I needed so much protein to build muscle and not lose my muscle that I already gained.
The truth is that my back and my nose were full of pimples- a sign or an unhealthy liver. I often had very terrible gas- a sign of an upset digestive system. Days after I stopped drinking protein shakes, my pimples disappeared and my gas was minimal. I did not notice a minimum loss of muscle or strength when I stopped drinking protein shakes. As a matter of fact, I feel better and my digesting system is happier along with my skin.
The truth is that I used to spend at least forty dollars every two weeks in protein shakes back in the past which adds up to one hundred and sixty a month and almost two thousand a year. If I would follow the myth and sell it to our members, I would be making from one to two thousand dollars extra a month. Get this right. This is only marketing to sell something that does not work. Some people are getting rich by you buying such product without benefit to your well being.
So the conclusion is that protein does matter if you need to grow muscle and repair different tissues in your body. It is a needed nutrient, especially for active people (everyone should be active. Otherwise you are getting old and dying). But the only protein that your body can benefit from is the one that comes in whole foods.
If you are already eating healthy, you may be getting more than enough protein to grow and repair your muscles.
Protein shake is a waste of money and you are hurting your body instead of doing it a favor. There is not even a small benefit from it unless you want an intoxicated liver, pimples on your body and smell because of your gas.”
My friend told me that her cousin was obsessed with the protein shakes and she won’t believe what I told her.
I told my friend that it is good to get information out and is the person's responsibility to do what she wants with the information. Beliefs are hard to challenge. Back when I took a protein shake no one could make me change my mind.
So I ended our conversation saying, “I don’t recommend protein shakes. Therefore, I don’t think there is a specific time to drink a protein shake. However, it is a very good idea to eat a meal high in protein just within the two hours after exercising.