What Are the Benefits of Muscle Milk?

CytoSport Muscle Milk may help improve body composition and athletic performance.

Although the supplement marketplace is crowded with options, CytoSport Muscle Milk, a high-protein meal-replacement supplement, is particularly well-known. This supplement is often used by bodybuilders and other athletes looking to gain muscle weight with limited fat gain. CytoSport Muscle Milk has a profile unlike many other protein supplements. It contains added carbohydrates--16g per serving--and a high fat content--12g per serving, with 6g saturated. However, the ingredients in CytoSport Muscle Milk may offer benefits for performance and body composition when combined with exercise. Consult a doctor before using any supplements.

Weight Gain

CytoSport Muscle Milk may help you gain weight for sports or other reasons because it is high in calories. One serving contains 300 calories, and CytoSport's official website recommends consuming it before your workouts, after your workouts and before bedtime, which would total 900 extra calories per day. These extra calories may help you achieve a caloric surplus that would lead to weight gain.

Reduced Oxidative Damage

Although exercise has many beneficial effects for overall health, it may also cause oxidative stress. Oxidative stress can damage your cells, but it can be offset by antioxidants. CytoSport Muscle Milk contains vitamins A, C and E, which are considered antioxidant vitamins. In addition, Muscle Milk contains taurine, which research suggests may also have antioxidant properties. A study from the March 2004 issue of the journal Amino Acids found that taurine may reduce oxidative damage from exercise.

Improvement in Exercise Performance

The taurine and carbohydrates in Muscle Milk may promote increased endurance.

According to the March 2004 Amino Acids study, taurine may also help prolong exercise and improve endurance performance. In addition, CytoSport Muscle Milk contains numerous forms of carbohydrates, including fructose and glucose. The combination of carbohydrates may also improve performance, according to a study from the February 2008 issue of Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise. This study found that fructose alone, as well as fructose and glucose in combination, improved cycling endurance.

Fat Burning

Although CytoSport Muscle Milk is often used for gaining muscle, it may also be beneficial for burning fat. This is because Muscle Milk is high in protein, which can help increase your metabolic rate. In addition, CytoSport Muscle Milk contains medium chain triglycerides, which may promote fat loss. A study published in the International Journal of Obesity and Related Metabolic Disorders found that medium chain triglycerides may improve fat oxidation, or the burning of fat for energy.