Nutrition

How Fiber Affects Protein Digestion

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How Fiber Affects Protein Digestion

 QUESTION 

I’ve heard that fiber gets in the way of protein digestion. Is this true?

 ANSWER 

Keep in mind that there are times when you want protein to be delivered quickly into your body and times when you want it to be delivered more slowly. Fiber doesn’t “get in the way” of protein digestion — it slows it down (as do fats and slow-digesting types of protein such as casein).

When you train, you create a demand in your muscles for amino acids. The more quickly you can deliver them, the less likely your body is to tear down other muscle mass to acquire the needed aminos for recovery. Just before your workout, start providing your body with a protein source that’s quickly digested, such as whey. Avoid fiber at this time so aminos can be readily absorbed.

At other times of day, you should consume slower-digesting proteins, either in whole-food or supplement form. These proteins  will stay in your body longer, providing you with a more constant longer-lasting stream of aminos acids, again preventing your body from tapping into muscle stores.

Finally, fiber is healthy for your body in its own right, as it helps increase the bulk of the food you  consume. It makes it easier to digest and process food, and fiber promotes overall health, as well. Try to take in a minimum of 25 grams of fiber each day from whole foods and supplements; 35 grams is a good target to shoot for. If you’re not getting that much now, build up to it gradually. – FLEX

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