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Protein 101 for Athletes

P4’s sports supplements Pre Game Formula and Energy Formula has you covered when it comes to delivering a huge energy rush before and during a workout; and post-workout, Recovery Push Formula provides caffeine-free energy, electrolytes, and a vitamin matrix that can help aid the recovery process. But protein is another component of the recovery equation. You probably already know you need it, but it pays to know a little more about it …

What is protein?

Proteins are large molecules made up of combinations of amino acids, and along with carbohydrates and fats, protein is one of the three macronutrients your body needs to function.

Why do we need protein and why is it important?

According to the U.S. National Library of Medicine, proteins are involved in nearly every cell function within the human body—they make up muscles, transmit nervous signals, create the immune system, and carry oxygen. For athletes, protein can help repair muscle fibers that have been damaged through exercise.

What are the best foods for protein?

Although small amounts of protein are found in almost every food, dairy products, legumes, rice, poultry, quinoa, meat, fish, and eggs are considered the best whole food sources.

What is the difference between casein and whey?

Both are popular forms of protein; Casein is a milk protein that digests slowly to keep you feeling full longer, which is why many lifters consume it at night prior to sleep (when your body fasts). Whey protein is a byproduct of cheese making and has more varied amino acids and nutrients than casein, but it tends to be more expensive than casein.

How much protein intake is recommended per day?

Protein intake depends on activity levels, but generally 10 to 35 percent of a person’s calories should come from protein. This can be anywhere from about 50 to 175 grams of protein each day, but many bodybuilders take up to 300 grams daily. When you’re looking to add muscle a typical recommendation is to consume one gram per pound of bodyweight.

Are there any side effects of taking in too much protein?

Taking excess protein can also cause digestive upset, and potentially harm the heart or liver.

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