Some people use to ask what happens if you drink protein without working out and to be able to answer this, many important factors must be considered first. The fitness culture has spread throughout the world, and every day more people join the wave of bodybuilding. That is why protein powders, shakes, or bars are a common element in athletes’ diets, but their consumption has also grown among those who do not exercise.
Proteins per se are already controversial. On the one hand, some say that we take more than necessary, considering the minimum levels of protein recommended by the WHO and the FDA. On the other hand, some studies indicate that the needs of certain people, including children, adolescents, the elderly, in stressful situations, and, above all, for athletes, may be much higher. We are talking about two to three times the recommended amount.
Whether you choose a ready-to-eat protein shake or make one at home, this drink can positively or negatively affect your health and body weight depending on how it fits into your eating plan and physical activities.
In the context of sports, protein shakes are a type of supplement that can be used to increase protein intake in the diet. This is related to the influence that the amino acids that form proteins have in the synthesis of muscle mass.
We may come to believe that drinking a protein shake even if we don’t exercise can be useful because it would increase our muscle mass and we would lose weight or improve our health, but it is necessary to know, first of all, what proteins are and why they are essential.
What are proteins?
Before making any conjecture, we must know what we mean when we talk about proteins. Proteins are chains of amino acids that help us build muscle and keep our bodies healthy. There are 20 different amino acids, and 8 of them are essential for our body’s proper functioning.
Our body cannot produce these amino acids, so the only way to obtain them is through the consumption of other foods. That is why protein supplements began to be developed and implemented, which make their intake much more manageable and facilitate compliance with the recommended doses for athletes.
Protein and exercise
Protein supplements were conceived initially for people with rigorous physical training, those who need a high consumption of these products to allow the development of their muscles, but who also seek to take care of their figure and not exceed their food consumption.
These products are also recommended for people with particular conditions or some diseases since they allow them to have a more stable and healthy diet and maintain, increase, or avoid weight loss during some treatments that could affect their metabolism.
What happens if you drink protein without working out?
If you do not carry out any physical activity, taking protein supplements can become a problem if you exceed the dose of these elements that your body should receive daily. Proteins are designed to be consumed before a physical workout, as it helps strengthen muscles and prevents the possibility of their fibres breaking during extreme activities. If you consume protein but do not exercise, it will be a problem if your ingest dose is higher than the amount that your body should process daily. Since these supplements also have a certain caloric content, which, when not burned due to the body’s inactivity, becomes in fat, causing weight gain for the consumer.
This excess weight can bring different health complications on its own, and subsequent efforts to lose this excess weight could be excessive for people who are not used to physical activities. Taking more protein than you need will not increase your muscle mass if it is not accompanied by physical exercise, increasing the amount of protein if you don’t need it, it is not necessary.
Depending on the brand and type of protein you buy, the calorie content will vary. Some formulas have flavours, sugars and other ingredients to increase your nutrition level and have a more pleasant taste, which increases this index. Usually, a serving of protein powder mixed with water contains about 110 calories, but if you add milk or some fruit to your smoothie, that index could climb up to 300 calories or more.
If you regularly consume protein supplements but don’t do any exercise to burn off that calorie percentage added to your diet, you will eventually see an increase in your weight. This is due to the accumulated fat that additional energy reserve has been transformed into.
Replace your meals with protein supplements
In some cases, non-athletic people who consume protein supplements seek to replace some foods with their consumption, believing that these formulas’ components can fulfill the same functions as a complete food. However, this has been proven false and inadvisable, because according to various investigations, protein supplements are not capable of emulating the nutrients, antioxidants, and fiber that natural foods contain.
Before consuming this product, we must keep in mind that it is only a supplement, additional food intended to increase the consumption of nutrients and complement our diet, but not to substitute any food.
If you do not carry out physical activity, you should bear in mind that consuming a higher amount of protein than you need for an extended period could lead to other medical problems such as kidney stones, osteoporosis, and other complications. Since that the body would make a more significant effort to metabolize the excess of this element.
In most cases, you should consider eating foods that provide you with the right amount of protein. Supplements are helpful when you need protein quickly and don’t have time to prepare a meal.
What happens if you drink protein without working out?
So, the ideal recommendation that we could give is that no, that we do not take these protein shakes if we are not doing any physical activity. There may be a small percentage of a small group of the population, but a very small one may find drinking proteins beneficial without exercising to them due to their specific characteristics.
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