There is a lot of discussion regarding the anabolic window and how it is something that must be followed by everyone wishing to build muscle mass and retain their muscular gain. But first, let us get familiar with what is this 30-minute window.
The 30-minute anabolic window
It is found that during a vigorous workout the body gets into a catabolic state which is like a breakdown phase where the body has used its glycogen stores and also the fibers of the muscles are in a damaged state. So, in order recover and gain as well as retain the muscle growth, it is recommended to intake protein and carbohydrate in probably a shake form within thirty minutes of the workout to recover and put the body in an anabolic state and increase the mass of muscles.
So, the 30 minutes period post a workout is the window where the catabolic process of the workout is replaced by an anabolic process to help gain more muscles. It is something most workout ‘gurus’ swear by and highly recommend.
However, does the anabolic window actually live up to the hype?
As there are a number of people swearing by the 30 minutes anabolic window, there are equally many skeptical about its effectiveness and looking for scientific proof to verify it. But, there isn’t any evidence backing the anabolic window and it is therefore considered to be a myth.
It is true that the body is in a damaged condition and depleted of nutrients, like carbohydrates and muscle fibers. And they do need to be restored or the body does need to recover, but the 30 minute window stands true only if the workout has been done in a fasted state. For instance, you workout right after waking up or really early in the morning or anytime without having eaten for quite a few hours before the workout and in that case, the body can use a nutrient-rich booster dose right after the intense workout and needs it too.
However, if the body is not in a fasted condition or you have had a pre-workout snack or are working post lunch or dinner, etc., then it is fine if you eat post a few hours as the body is not completely in a damage, catabolic mode. In this case, the body can use the nutrients present from before the workout.
Thus, the 30 minute anabolic window is just a myth.
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