Bodybuilders often turn to whey protein to help increase muscle mass. But, according to new research in the December issue of the International Journal of Sports Nutrition and Exercise Metabolism, whey protein doesn’t have the same effect on muscle mass and strength when untrained young adults consume it.
Researchers from the University of Regina had participants ingest either whey protein or a placebo and perform 3 sets of 6 to 10 repetitions of 9 different whole-body exercises 4 days a week for 8 weeks. Both the protein and the placebo were mixed with water and consumed immediately before the start of exercise and then again immediately after each training set. Before and after the study, measures were taken for lean-tissue mass, muscle size of the elbow and knee flexors and extensors and ankle dorsiflexors and plantar flexors, and muscle strength (1-repetition-maximum chest press).
Results revealed a significant increase in muscle size of the knee extensors, knee flexors and ankle plantar flexors, and chest-press strength over time, with no difference between the placebo or protein groups. Researchers concluded the ingestion of whey protein before the start of exercise and again after each training set has no effect on muscle mass and strength in untrained adults.
The research will be released in the December issue of the International Journal of Sport Nutrition and Exercise Metabolism. To review this study, visit www.IJSNEM-Journal.com.