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Protein Power Essay

1233 words - 5 pages

Protein Power


1. Description

Met-Rx can be used as a meal supplement or meal companion. It is mostly used by body builders in order to build body mass. It is packaged in the form of food bars or powdered shakes. (www.metrx.com/tutorials-and-quiz/quiz.html) The purpose of this treatment is to "support protein synthesis, energy production, and fat utilization" (www.met-rx.com/faq/default.htm). The ingredients contained in these combinations allow the body to acquire all the necessary nutrients for maximum metabolic effect.

2. Types of Protein Supplements

Shakes are used so that the time consuming calorie counting, etc. can be avoided. They are also designed to "maximize the oxidation and storage potential of some metabolic pathways (protein and carbohydrates) and limits others (fat)" (www.metrx.com/tutorial-and-quiz/lesson7c.html). Currently, whey protein has the highest Biological Value (a number used for comparing protein value in foods.) The fact that whey protein was produced as a result of milk protein and there is no inclusion of fat or lactose allows whey protein to be very beneficial. Whey protein has also shown an increase in levels of glutathione (an antioxidant which is necessary in a healthy immune system). (www.powersupplements.com/protein.htm) For this reason, the University of Nebraska Medical Center studied the effects of a protein diet on hamsters. They concluded that the "life span of hamsters was extended by 60% by supplementing their diet with whey protein" (www.powersupplements.com/protein.htm). Considering this study deals with hamsters, the results can not be assumed exact for humans, nonetheless they are encouraging.

3. Food Vs. Protein Supplement

Nutritional supplements have become so popular in recent years that they are easily purchased at health stores, gyms, and even over the Internet. These products are sold without FDA approval of safety or effectiveness. In a study done by the Department of Exercise Science at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, an increase in body mass due to protein supplements was "most likely water retention in muscle but could also be due to some new muscle protein"(Clarkson 1999). Though athletes need more protein to keep a nitrogen balance, it is easily obtained in a normal diet. The Department of Pharmacy at Shands Hospital concludes that "protein supplementation can lead to dehydration, gout, liver and kidney damage, calcium loss, and gastrointestinal effects"(Beltz 1993).

4. Protein Supplement and Athletes/Bodybuilders
Scientists have proven that the break down of protein in amino acids are needed in the build up of muscle. As a result, Met-Rx contains whey protein, metamyosyn, as well as other proteins. Athletes and Bodybuilders are looking for a way to increase muscle mass, increase endurance, or reduce body fat without damaging their bodies like using steroids, etc. Protein supplements give them the...

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