You probably heard that it’s best to have your protein shake right after exercising. The truth is, you can take your protein booster any time of the day. Your body is smart enough and will be able to stock up on protein in order to then use it when necessary.
There are, however, different benefits associated with taking protein depending on when you consume it. Choosing what’s best for you will depend on your personal goals and health needs.
The benefits of having a morning protein shake
Having a breakfast that is rich in protein or having your protein shake first thing in the morning is absolutely amazing for boosting your energy levels, and what is more important, making this energy last longer. As opposed to carbohydrates, the energy produced from protein will be released much slower and this is exactly what will help you keep going throughout the day with greater focus and energy.
In order to have maximum sustainable energy, it is best to minimise your intake of carbohydrates in the morning and leave those for the evening. If you are opting for a protein shake, look out for grain-free and ideally sugar-free options, just like our Fresh Blueberry Morning Protein Shake, boosting with food-based antioxidants and balancing herbs.
If you’re trying to loose weight, having protein in the morning might be also very effective. Because consuming protein leaves you feeling fuller, you will experience less “cravings-related” brain activity, and increased levels of a hormone associated with satiety. According to a study at the University of Missouri, people who got 30 grams of protein at breakfast were less hungry throughout the day and saw favourable changes in the hormones and brain signals that control appetite. There is another benefit that goes with this, and that is better regulated sugar levels, which leads to healthier, more stable moods!
The benefits of having an evening protein shake
While protein consumed in the morning will be used to produce more energy, in the evening the same food source will be devoted to supporting your overnight recovery and increasing the process of muscle growth. In a review of studies, scientists concluded that taking protein before bed is an effective strategy to promote muscle building and help them adapt to exercise. This is because protein consumed before bed is effectively digested and absorbed, increasing the availability of protein to muscles for recovery throughout the night. So, if you’re recovering from an injury or building muscle mass for greater endurance and strength, having some additional protein in the evening might be of great help in optimising your goals.
Here, you don’t need to worry so much about having grain-free protein, it’s actually really advisable to boost your carbohydrates intake in the evening for better sleep, health and mental performance (you can read more about it here). Your evening protein, however, should be richer in tryptophan, that is an amino acid essential for the body’s production of sleep and happy hormones. If you’re vegan then sunflower seeds, raw pumpkin seeds, oats and rice protein will do too the job for you. No wonder this is exactly the blend we put into our Chocolate Spice Evening Protein Shake to address your need for tryptophan and help you enhance overnight recovery and the quality of your sleep. If you eat dairy, on the other hand, you can enjoy the benefits of organic whey which is the most bioavailable source of tryptophan. Try making this amazing sleep soundly smoothie up to two hours before bed and see yourself drift off like a baby.