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Protein is made from amino acids – the crucial element required to grow your muscles. If you’re looking to gain muscle mass, you need to ensure that you get enough protein into your diet.
How Does the Protein on Your Plate Turn into Muscle?
For optimal muscle gains, you need a steady intake of protein throughout the day, but once you’ve consumed your high protein meal or shake, what happens to your body? How does protein assist muscle growth?
To start with, your stomach and small intestine contain enzymes which start breaking down the protein to create peptides. These are chains of amino acids which build up the muscle in your body.
A dipeptide is made of 2 amino acids which are linked with a peptide bond. Tripeptides are created from 3 amino acids with 2 peptide bonds. These peptides can influence how our bodies react to exercise and food, and how they build muscle. You need enough amino acids present to produce the hormone Human Growth Hormone. This hormone can help you perform, recover, and grow muscle through exercise.
Aminos are also turned into groups of protein filaments or myofibrils. These are required for muscle contraction and Myofibrils can both build and repair muscle.
Without protein to turn into amino acids, it would be incredibly difficult to increase your muscle mass, let alone being able to maintain the muscle you have or repair muscle damage.
What Is an Anabolic State vs Catabolic State and How Do They Affect Muscle Gains?
Protein is formed from oxygen, hydrogen, carbon, and nitrogen. When you have had enough protein intake, you will have a positive balance of nitrogen. This is also known as an anabolic state. When your body is in this state, it can focus on repairing and building muscle tissue. To get yourself into this state, you need to eat foods which give you enough energy.
A catabolic state, on the other hand, occurs when there is a disruption to the balance between rest, nutrition and exercise. It is caused by a negative balance of nitrogen in the body. Perhaps you haven’t been getting enough sleep or eating the best protein you can. As the body can’t meet the energy required to function efficiently, your body will start breaking down your precious muscles.
Your body will naturally move between these two states, but what you should aim for is for your body to be in an anabolic state for longer than it is in a catabolic state. That’s when you will experience the biggest gains in muscle mass. Eating plenty of protein can help with this.
The best way to stay in an anabolic state is by taking in protein regularly throughout the day. Eating carbs right after a workout and small amounts of carbs regularly will help too. Because you’re doing high-intensity resistance training (weight training), you also need to ensure that you are resting enough for your body to recover from this.
How Many Grams of Protein Per Day Give You the Best Muscle Recovery?
So, does protein increase muscle recovery? It does! By taking in some of the best protein sources you are developing amino acids in your body. These transform into peptides and target your muscles to repair and grow them.
A good guide if you’re trying to build muscle, is to take in around 2.2 grams of protein per kilo you weigh. This is a good amount to help your muscles recover as well as grow.
Another way of doing it is by a percentage of your calorie intake. As an example, a good ratio for your macros is 35% protein, 20% fat and 45% carbs. If you’re consuming 3000 calories a day, you need 35% of this to be made up of protein sources. That’s 1050 calories coming from protein, or around 263 grams of total protein. 3 serves of our (International Protein’s) Amino Charged WPI protein provides 105g of protein per day, or about 40% of your protein requirements.
What’s the Best Protein for Building Muscle?
International Protein offers one of the most well-rounded protein supplements out there –Protein Synergy. This formula was created specifically to help you attain an anabolic state. It has a blend of ingredients that work together to give you the ideal rates of protein absorption. It can deliver a constant stream of amino acids in your bloodstream for hours after you take it. It’s one of the best protein supplements because of its high-quality, well thought-out ingredients.
Take a look at the ingredients and how they can help you build muscle:
Hydrolysed Whey Protein Isolate (Whey Peptides)
This works almost immediately to provide you with di and tripeptides. It is rapidly absorbed to give you energy quickly. These peptides start stimulating your liver to already work towards getting you into an anabolic state to stimulate muscle growth.
Grass Fed Whey Protein Isolate (WPI)
WPI is the next to kick in and keep supplying whey and amino acids in your body.
Whey Protein Concentrate (WPC)
WPI is followed closely by WPC. WPC offers the amino acids which specifically produce more glutathione in your body. Glutathione is an incredible antioxidant that can boost your immune system, which can protect it from oxidative exercise stress. This stress can prevent you from making the gains you want.
Next to be absorbed by the body is egg albumen, which is one of the best protein sources. This continues supplying your body with the amino acids necessary for muscle growth.
Micellar Casein (Milk Protein Isolate) and Calcium Caseinate
Finally, casein works across a period of up to 7 hours to slowly keep releasing amino acids into your system. This slow release aids the absorption of the amino acids, including muscle sparing glutamine, threonine, and arginine.
Thanks for reading this International Protein article about how you can use protein for muscle growth. Please ask any questions you have about protein in our comments section below.