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Should Women Use Protein Drink Supplements?

Protein drink supplements are often promoted by the fitness industry for increasing lean body mass. If you’re a female trying to tone up and increase lean body mass, do you need these supplements?

It seems to be in vogue these days to sip protein drink supplements if you’re a woman trying to get fit. The thought is that if you don’t get enough protein in your diet you won’t build lean body mass as efficiently when you do resistance training. The market is responding by providing a variety of protein supplement drinks that contain whey and soy protein supplements to help build lean body mass. If your goal is to tone up your muscles without building serious bulk, do you need protein drink supplements?

It’s true that the amino acids in protein form the basic building blocks for muscle development. Without protein you would be unable to build muscle no matter how much resistance training is carried out. But, how much protein do you really need to tone muscles and get a firmer shape? If you’re not trying to build bulk muscles, it’s recommended that women get 0.8 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight on a daily basis. Using this formula, most women will require less than fifty grams of protein per day even when they’re actively pursuing a fitness program. This amount of protein is usually easily supplied when a health diet is eaten. In fact, most women consume more protein than this each day. Drinking protein in the form of protein supplement drinks not only adds extra protein but additional calories as well which can add up to weight gain over time without adding any added benefit to your training program.

Another disadvantage to using protein supplement drinks is they’re often used as a substitute for real food. This deprives you of the opportunity to enjoy the simple joy of eating. Most women will agree that the taste of a bland protein drink isn’t good substitute for a tasty, nutritious meal. A better alternative to a protein drink supplement would be a bowl of oatmeal with skim milk and an egg white omelet. This would supply a nice protein boost along with a healthy dose of heart healthy fiber.

Could protein supplement drinks even be harmful? There’s the thought that consuming high doses of protein in the form of protein supplement drinks could negatively impact health. A high protein diet has been shown to increase bone loss by promoting calcium excretion. It also may put additional strain on the kidneys and liver. Some studies also show an association between high protein diets and the development of certain types of tumors in animals.

The best advice if you’re involved in a fitness training program to tone and firm is to eat a healthy, balanced diet that include 0.8 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight. This is usually easy to accomplish with a little planning. The added benefit? You can still get your protein from the delicious taste of real food instead of a chalky protein drink.

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  1. While I agree with *most* parts of this article, others I do not…Whey Isolate Protein in the powdered supplement form serves a very big purpose directly after a workout. all trainees (male or female), regardless of their chosen mode of exercise, must take their post-exercise nutrition seriously in order to provide the muscle with the raw materials it needs. Namely protein and carbohydrates. As all types of exercise use carbohydrates for energy, muscle carbohydrate depletion is inevitable. Therefore a post-workout meal high in carbohydrates is required to refill muscle carbohydrate/energy stores. In doing this, carbohydrate resynthesis is accelerated and protein balance becomes positive, leading to rapid repair of the muscle tissue. Women will not become “bulky” from this, in fact, this will help a woman achieve whatever fitness goal she is looking to achieve. You are correct, it is not meant to replace a nutritious meal, rather it is meant to “rush” the protein to the muscle stores when they need it the most.

  2. I am a young female in late 20s who has taken on a rigorous training regime which consists of weights and cardio to lose weight and get fit. I am doing 8 1hr sessions per week in total. I am doing some research into taking a protein supplement as I am not too sure how it will affect me. My husband plays rugby and weight trains and he takes protein every day, maybe twice a day. I would like to try a protein supplement to help repair my muscles in order to work harder. I’m not sure what is the best type to go for. Any advice anyone?

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