Can You Drink Protein Shakes Without Working Out

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Athletes and bodybuilders know how important protein is for muscle recovery and successful muscle protein synthesis. In layman’s terms: Protein fuels the repair of damaged muscle.

If you want gains, you’ll need to up your intake of protein. But what if you aren’t working out? Is it safe or healthy to enjoy protein shakes on a rest day? Is it dangerous to drink protein shakes if you don’t work out all all? First let’s understand why protein shakes are such a popular pre- and post-workout tradition.

Why Do People Drink Protein Shakes In The First Place?

While high-protein foods like eggs, almonds, oats and yogurt are staples in any healthy, balanced diet and also aid in recovery, protein shakes and powder are a convenient, portable and affordable alternative. Convenience is especially important when – for most active people –  drinking a protein shake is a ritual of their daily workout. It’s an intrical part of their muscle growth and plays just as much of a role in their progress as exercise and diet do.

The International Society of Sports Nutrition recommends that you need 15-25 grams of protein (depending on your gender and weight) before or after a workout in order to enhance muscle growth and repair. While, yes, you could get 15-25 grams of protein from a salad with grilled chicken, avocado, and egg, you might not have time to make it. Active lifestyles demand portability and convenience. It’s simply easier (and more realistic!) to quickly down a protein shake than it is to prepare and eat a high-protein meal.

So, Is It Unhealthy To Drink Protein Shakes Without Working Out?

It’s a sort of gym folklore that protein should be consumed immediately after working out. We’ve mentioned that protein helps in the recovery and growth of muscles which is why so many athletes preach the importance of ingesting this vital nutrient immediately. But, just because you’ve missed the anabolic window doesn’t mean that you should steer clear of protein. Our ULTRA WHEY Protein drink mix is ideal to benefit from on rest days and our GRS 9-Hour Protein is perfect for enjoying before bed or even the day after a workout as it supports on-going repair.

Researchers at the University of New Castle found that drinking a protein shake like our DIET PRO MEAL as a part of your breakfast (with or without working out) might help curb insulin spikes, lessening your risk of getting diabetes. People who enjoy high protein diets have also been known to have more energy, to focus better, and oftentimes get a better night’s sleep. Everyone – athlete/bodybuilder or not – will reap the benefits of protein.

What’s more, it’s not just people with strict workout regimes that are crunched for time. Anyone who eats on-the-go or who simply doesn’t have time to carefully cook a piece of salmon for dinner should consider drinking protein shakes.

It’s important to remember though: protein shakes help in muscle growth. If there is no torn muscle for the protein to repair and rebuild, the unused, excess protein will create fat by turning into glucose. Protein shakes are (naturally) high in calories. Depending on what you mix with the protein powder and whether you’re using whey, soy, or milk protein, your shake could range from being anywhere from 100 to 300+ calories. If you incorporate protein shakes into your diet, make sure you’re supplementing an otherwise healthy, well-rounded diet in order to avoid weight gain and ensure that you’re getting every other valuable nutrient and not just protein.

Looking for inspiration? Check out these 5 delicious (and easy) protein powder recipes that you can enjoy even if you haven’t just finished a grueling workout.

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