The Effect of Protein on Sports Performance | Original Article
Protein has become one of the most publicized nutrients for sports performance, because of its ability to stimulate muscle protein synthesis, thereby increasing muscle development. Beyond muscle growth, protein has several other functions critical to sports performance: cell regulation, muscle repair, immune function, neurological function, nutrient transport, and structural support. However, a notable limitation exists relative to the vast majority of nutrition studies completed to date on protein consumption – namely, studies have primarily focused on resistance-trained or power sport athletes . Protein intake is one of the most hotly debated topics related to sports nutrition. Most athletes probably ingest more protein than they really require and there is a flourishing market for protein supplements, amino acid mixes and all kinds of protein-based ‘power drinks’ that promise athletes top performance and massive gains of lean muscle mass. There is still a great deal to be learned about protein and its role in sports performance. There is a substantial body of literature that supports its use as a recovery aid for runners, if consumed in moderate amounts and shortly after long or intense exercise bouts.