Choose a variety of protein sources instead of the shake, it’s better for your health study says

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There are better ways of consuming protein than the convenient protein shake experts say

We all should increase muscle mass, however, the way we manage it could undermine our chances of living longer. The best way to absorb protein is to enjoy it in a variety of forms instead of the familiar shake as the go-to approach. 

Bodybuilders and fitness experts have long viewed amino acids as the way to gain benefits from building muscles. They promote snack bars to protein powders. If anyone was looking for a lift, there were plenty of alternative products on the shelves.

There’s just one problem with the protein’s widespread acceptance. Too much of anything is not good for you and with that said, you should know there are side effects.

Professor Stephen Simpson and Dr Samantha Solon-Biet, of the University of Sydney’s Charles Perkins Centre, reported new research in Nature Metabolism. Dr Solon-Biet examined the role of nutrition and how it impacts reproduction, aging, metabolic health, and appetite.

The report advocates that although amino acids have muscle building qualities, bodybuilders and health advocates can still go overboard with branched-chain amino acids or BCAAs. Because of this, it will shorten a person’s lifespan, cause an individual to gain weight, and adversely alter moods.

Additionally, Dr Solon-Biet reports diets containing large sums of protein and nominal amounts of carbohydrates are useful to the reproductive system, however, they are not so great as we develop in age. In fact, they have dire effects on a person’s health and could lead to a shorter life. 

There must be a balance of amino acids according to the latest analysis and developments. More specific effects come out of a mixture of protein sources than just one. What’s alarming is it could change a dieter’s intention to lose weight. It could have just the opposite effect on a person and they experience weight gain. Not only that, but moods are altered negatively.

The new research also explored the impacts of BCAAs and other amino acids like tryptophan compared to the makeup of mice. Tryptophan is the forerunner for serotonin, the happy hormone. It intensifies a person’s frame of mind, and it encourages a decent night’s slumber. Nevertheless, the problem is serotonin produces more than restful nights.

Professor Stephen Simpson, the Academic Director of the Charles Perkins Centre’s and researcher from the School of Life and Environmental Sciences says when you enrich your diet with BCAAs, you end up with remarkably higher traces of branched-chain amino acids that clash with amino acids like tryptophan. 

Consequently, this lowers serotonin levels and the signal that increases a person’s hunger becomes more aggressive. The mice used in the experiment overate consistently and became obese. As a result, they died faster.

These mice consumed twice the ordinary amount of BCAAs with the ideal measure being 100%, 50% or 20% for life. The mice who ate 200% of BCAAs show an increase in appetite and intake. Again, they died sooner than expected.

Protein Variety Increase Health Benefits

Dr Rosilene Ribeiro, public health nutritionist and dietitian at the University of Sydney’s School of Life and Environmental Sciences, suggests consuming a range of protein sources.

It’s essential people eat more of the right foods that provide protein or amino acids to balance their diet. They should also consist of more minerals, vitamins, and fiber. Get protein-containing foods in eggs, chicken, red meat, and fish. 

Don’t forget to include soy proteins, beans, lentils and nuts. This is especially healthful for vegetarians. Try tryptophan-rich foods like cheese, seeds, turkey, and soybeans. Surprisingly, some people are eating crocodile to supplement their BCAAs.

What are BCAAs

BCAAs are a trio of biogenic amino acids, which are taken to support muscle growth. They include valine, leucine, and isoleucine. The body cannot create this on its own, accordingly, bodybuilders must get them from foods and supplements. 

BCAAs activate enzymes important for strengthening muscle and help muscles feel less sore after workouts. In addition, they may drop blood levels of the enzymes lactate dehydrogenase and creatine kinase, which may improve recovery time and maintain protection against tissue damage.

Currently, there isn’t any evidence confirming that getting your BCAAs from a supplement is any better than getting them from the foods you eat or from a supplement containing whey or soy protein. This combination is in red meat and dairy products, where whey protein is found. 

Gym-goers regularly include whey protein in their diet to augment performance. In fact, research shows by taking supplements with whole protein may be better for muscle growth, sometimes, than taking amino acids supplements.

It’s also helpful when it comes to losing weight and reducing psychological and physical fatigue. Whey protein contains dairy by-products and large levels of BCAA.  

Adnan Munye

A certified personal trainer, Adnan specialises in weight loss, muscle building, body conditioning, core strengthening and injury rehabilitation. Adnan comes from a sporting background, where he has played football, badminton, rugby, and swimming all at various levels.

Adnan has always been passionate about health and fitness. He comes from a sporting background playing football, badminton, rugby, and swimming at various levels from a young age.

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Last modified: 21st May 2019