How Much Protein To Build Maximum Muscle?

More isn’t always better. Take protein shakes, for example.

Research has show that maximal muscle protein synthesis occurs after consuming 20 to 30 grams of a protein supplement. Higher intakes do not have additional anabolic effects. Consequently, many nutritional experts advise consuming 20 to 30 grams of protein periodically during the day.

However, it may not be that cut and dry with real-food meals. In a review of literature, Nicolaas Deutz and Robert Wolfe from Texas A&M University argued that meals containing more than 30 grams of protein are highly anabolic.

Why the difference?

Meals stimulate insulin release, which prevents protein breakdown and decreases amino acid levels in blood. Meals become increasingly anabolic at protein contents above 30 grams because they increase blood amino acid levels in proportion to the protein content of the meals. Deutz and Wolfe suggested that eating more protein during breakfast and lunch and maintaining high protein intake at dinner could improve protein synthesis.

Source: Clinical Nutrition, 32: 309-313, 2013

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