Carbohydrates and Protein intake after training


When talking about endurance training, it is important to eat enough carbohydrates after training. The muscles sugar depots (glycogen store) were drained and they need to be replenished if you want to be able to train optimally within a relatively short period of time. Intake of carbohydrates with a high glycemic index just after training promotes the construction of the glycogen store.

Even after strength training the intake of carbohydrate is important, because there is a huge "burn off" here too during training.

After strength training, it is important to eat protein immediately after the training, as several studies show that this can improve the building of muscle mass. This is both shown in rat experiments, strength training of the elderly and in rehabilitation efforts.

When we consume carbohydrates with a high glycemic index, there will be a very high increase in blood-sugar that causes the insulin level in the blood to rise accordingly. Insulin is a so-called anabolic hormone because it contributes to building the cells. Insulin stimulates protein synthesis and inhibits protein degradation.

By combining the intake of carbohydrates and protein immediately after  training, we can get a double effect on muscle building. Carbohydrates stimulates the insulin excretion which in turn stimulates protein synthesis and inhibits degradation.

It has also shown that ingesting carbohydrates alone after training builds more muscle mass than if you do not eat anything. Protein consumed alone build more muscle mass than after carbohydrate alone and combined intake of carbohydrate and protein achieved the best effect.


Carbohydrates: 1 gram with high glycemic index per kg of body weight (applies to people within the normal weight range!), since this quantity stimulates the maximum insulin increase.

Protein: 0.25 grams with a high biological index per kg of body weight. Some studies suggest that taking a slowly absorbing protein like casein is an advantage. If you train extremely hard you need an average of 1.7 grams of protein per kg of body weight calculated on your total daily intake!

Half a liter of cocoa skimmed milk is often recommended because it contains 18 grams of protein, 52 grams carbohydrate and only 2,5 grams of fat.

If the intake of protein is matched to your exercise you can reduce the discomfort in your muscles (no pain no gain is not true!).


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