Sunday, July 19, 2015

Protein Before Bed Builds Muscle

Night time snack before zzzzz
You can't simply build muscle eating lots of protein. To build muscle you need a combination of resistance training and protein. Recent studies show that the most effective way to trigger muscle growth is to spread your protein intake in several doses of 20-25 grams throughout the day.

A group of researchers have previously demonstrated that if you consume protein right before sleeping it can increase the rate protein synthesis (the process of making protein) by 22 percent during overnight recovery from exercise.

This same group of researchers now wanted to know if consuming protein before bed would increase the muscle adaptive response to weight training.

They did a 12 week double blinded study on a bunch of volunteers who weight trained three times a week. The subjects drank either a protein drink or placebo before bed. The protein drink contained 27.5 grams of protein and 15 grams of carbs.

The results showed that the group that had the protein drink had significantly greater improvements in muscle strength, muscle size and even muscle fiber size (done by muscle biopsy).

The subjects were already consuming diets that were fairly high in protein (1.3 grams/kg) and they also had a protein snack (10 grams of protein) after each workout.

How should you snack up on your pre bedtime meal? A cup of milk has about eight grams of protein, and if you had some toast and peanut butter that will probably do the trick.

Don't forget to do strength train too.


Snijders T, Res PT et al (2015). Proten Ingestion Before Sleep Increases Muscle Mass And Strength Gains During Prolonged Exercise Training In Healthy Young Men. J Nutri. 145(6): 1178-1184. DOI: 10.3945/jn.114.208371.

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