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Should You Drink a Protein Shake Before or After a Workout?

author image Sharon Smith
Sharon Smith is a Certified Health Education Specialist and professional writer. She received a Masters of Science in public health in 2010 and minored in English communications as an undergraduate student. Her specialties include behavior change, weight management and whole health.
Should You Drink a Protein Shake Before or After a Workout?
Three blackberry smoothies on a table. Photo Credit: gabrielasauciuc/iStock/Getty Images

When it comes to building muscle, timing may be everything. A 2010 study in "The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition" suggests that your muscles get the most benefit from protein when it is consumed after a workout in a dose of 20 grams, because this is the optimal amount of protein and timing for your body to synthesize proteins for muscle growth and repair.

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Protein Sources

There are many types of protein powders to add to your post-workout shake. Animal-derived protein powders include egg white, casein and whey proteins. Opt for soy, hemp, pea or rice proteins if you are vegetarian or vegan.

Maximizing Results

For optimal muscle recovery, replenish your glycogen levels by drinking a protein shake mixed with carbs within 30 minutes after your workout. Blend protein powder with low-fat milk, your favorite fruit and drink up. You can swap the milk for unsweetened soy, almond, rice, hemp or coconut milk if you are lactose intolerant or choose to not drink milk.

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