T Nation

protein utilization throughout the day

If I understand correctly, on a higher protein diet, in the meals early in the day a greater proportion of protein will be used as a building block than later in the day, when more will be oxidized for energy. Two questions:

  1. Does this mean that less protein is required in evening meals to support protein synthesis than was required in the AM?
  2. Does this mean that 30 grams of protein produces greater insulin at night than it does in the morning?

Any conjecture would be appreciated.

i really dont know where you got that info or if it is even true. but i would say that post workout is the time that your body would utilize the protein better as well as pwo carbs.

I agree with P-Dog. Don’t really know where you got that info. Obviously, it all depends on when you train when you want to spike insulin and enhance protein synthesis and prevent protein breakdown. Post training, you want to ingest around a 2:1 ratio of carbs:protein per lb of lean body mass. Carbs will induce an insulin spike which will then shuttle those nutrients to muscle cells

Now I may be wrong in what I am about to say, but anytime you eat, insulin will be released. However…increased protein stimulates the release of glucagon which is a insulin antagonist (meaning it draws glycogen AWAY from muscles), so I dont think you need to worry about an increased insulin spike at night if you eat a meal consisting of 30+ grams of protein. Because protein results in glucagon being released…it stands to reason that you don’t want to eat a HUGE protein meal right after working out. Thats why it is pretty pointless to eat a meal consisting of upwards to 70,80,90 grams of protein (unless of coarse you are Hyyyoooge) as a P+C meal after training. It would just inhibit insulin’s job in shuttleing those nutrients into muscle. Thats why your best bet is to just divide your protein intake between your 6-7 meals which is usually 30,40, maybe 50 grams of protein per meal. Does that make sense? Man, I hope I am not wrong (I dont think I am), but I am sure someone will come along and let us know…haha.

If we’re getting P+F calories at night and less protein is needed to obtain the same boost in protein synthesis, it may be a good idea to take in less protein in order to decrease the insulin response of that protein. It may lead to more bodyfat being used overnight or even better insulin sensitivity in the long-term.

(I understand that glucagon lessens the damage of protein’s insulin effect, but in fact people with higher insulin sensitivity have better glucagon clearance.)