If you have the desire to increase your muscle mass, or at least maintain the muscles you already have built, you need to consume a lot more protein after working out than you would if you didn’t workout. Using muscle mass gainer supplements is an effective and popular way to restore your body’s protein balance. Mass gainers provide enough calories to gain muscles faster and offer maximum recovery after intense workout. That’s why they are very popular among bodybuilders. But are there any downsides to it? And what would be the best choice of muscle mass gainer?
How do mass gainers work?
A mass gainer is a supplement providing carbohydrates, protein and sometimes even fat to help to add muscle mass. Gainers helps to increase the daily calorie intake to promote muscle mass gain.
When working out and trying to build muscles a lot of people find it hard to eat enough food to reach the calorie levels needed for your body to increase body mass. Gainers are supposed to be used as a complement to a normal healthy and balanced diet.
People often ask whether to use muscle mass gainers or whey protein shakes. Most gainers contain a lot more protein than a normal protein shake. Gainers are also more effective than a plain protein shake at helping your body recover from intense workout. If you are trying to gain muscle mass but find it hard to eat enough calories to succeed, gainers are better than protein shakes at boosting your calorie intake. But if you just want to get more protein in your diet, or need a low-calorie between meals intake, a protein shake is better for you.
As I wrote in this post, unused glucose gets stored as glycogen in your liver and muscles for future needs of energy. Restoring glycogen is a fairly slow process and if you want to gain muscle mass, gainers can increase the speed at which glycogen is recovered. The high level of carbohydrates in gainers helps to increase the intensity of glycogen in the human body, and prevent the destruction of muscle tissue in muscles not getting worked out that particular day. A high quality gainer also contains fibers, which improves the digestion. Fibers are essential for controlling the balance between digestion and cholesterol. Fibers plays an important role removing toxic waste from the body, which helps the body to increase the absorption of nutrients from your food.
What about the mass gainer side effect?
A mass gainer can be used to add weight to your body, but the amount of time it takes depends on your workout and your bodies metabolism. It’s impossible to gain muscle mass without gaining weight. The challenge lies in gaining muscles instead of fat. A common mistake people often make, is believing that using mass gainers automatically will turn all excess calories to muscles. But unless you burn more calories than you consume, the excess will cause fat gain.
Creatine is a common ingredient in mass gainers, and is also known to cause gastrointestinal distress if you’re not taking the right amount. Be careful and make sure you follow the dosage instructions carefully. They are there to prevent difficulties and to make sure you get the most benefit from the gainer. Another important thing if you use gainers with creatine is to increase your water intake. If you drink to little water the creatine can cause you stomach to cramp. Water is essential to make everything work the way it should in your body. The high caloric intake relative to the fiber content can cause constipation. Research has shown that you risk chronic constipation if you have a continuous low fiber intake, and that is highly possible if you use gainers over a long time of period. If you use gainers for a long time you should take a fiber supplement before bedtime. This will help your digestive system to work the way it should and will not interfere with your calorie intake.
There is no such thing as ‘the best gainer’. A gainer with good quality will give you the desired effect, if exercising the right way and eating a well-balanced diet. And quality protein is measured by how fast your body can use it and is stated as ‘BV’ – Biological Value. Sometimes you want quick access and quick usage of the protein, and need to choose a high BV, but sometimes – like at bedtime – you want your body to absorb protein slowly and need to choose a lower BV. Mostly though, you should look for a high BV to meet your needs, and to make sure you get a hold of a good quality gainer.
But what else to look for in a muscle mass gainer? The main ingredients in a gainer are always high-energy foods, like protein and starch. But different gainers may target different procedures in the gaining process. Some gainers will stimulate your body’s muscle growth by to increase the muscle fiber synthesis, while others provide the building blocks of muscles (like protein and amino acids). You need to know your goal before choosing what kind of gainer you should use. Sometimes you need to get more than one kind of gainers, to meet your needs.
Another thing to be aware of is the level of sugar in the gainer. Too much sugar can cause an insulin spike, and may cause drowsiness, headaches and irritation. An excess amount of sugar will also make your body to store fat. Under carbohydrates in the information text of the product you can read the amount of sugar. 30-60 grams is OK.
For maximum recovery effect a gainer should be consumed within half an hour after working out. If you are building big muscles you should have one or two more gainers later that day too. To prevent digestive problems you will have to eat a well-balanced and nutritious diet, drink lots of water and possibly add fiber supplement before bedtime. There are many kinds off gainers but you should mainly try to find gainers with high BV – Biological Value.
And should you get unwanted symptoms from taking gainer, please see your doctor for professional guidance.