Originally posted by naturalguy
Consumption of an easily digested protein/carbohydrate drink immediately after exercise is essential to stimulate both fat loss and muscle growth. This may sound confusing but let me explain the science behind this simple strategy.
The immediate post-workout period is an ideal “window of opportunity” for improving body composition. Research demonstrates that nutrient consumption (protein and carbohydrates) after exercise are shuttled directly to muscles to trigger cellular recovery and preserve lean body mass, and these nutrients do not interfere with the fat loss process.
Increasing the lean muscle to fat ratio is necessary to prevent the metabolic rate from slowing down in response to calorie restriction. A concentrated effort on building/preserving lean mass (muscle) is a must for any successful attempt at fat loss.
Results of a recent study emphasize the importance of post-workout supplementation for effective weight loss and preservation of lean tissue. In this study, Japanese scientists had 17-overweight men take part in a 12-week weight loss program. The program consisted of moderate exercise combined with a 17% reduction in energy intake. Immediately after exercise, one group consumed a protein/carbohydrate supplement while the other group was given a non-caloric placebo. Both groups ate the same number of total calories and protein daily.
After 12-weeks the researchers found no differences in fat loss between the groups. However, the group not taking the protein/carb supplement directly after training lost a significant amount of lean body mass. Those taking the protein/carbohydrate supplement preserved their lean body mass.
Even when people are attempting to lose unwanted body fat, it is essential to supplement directly after exercise. Post-workout supplementation maintains lean body mass that transfers into a higher resting metabolic rate and more effective fat loss over the long term.