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Thread: Carbs After Workout page

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    pivot44's Avatar
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    Carbs After Workout

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    Mark, in one of your blog entries, you write: "High carb meals that are not consumed directly after workouts will generate lots of insulin." So, what's different about carb intake immediately after workouts; is the insulin response muted in some way? Is that why recovery drinks contain 40g of carbs? Thanks.

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    EGYnutrition's Avatar
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    Your muscles are primed for receiving nutrients (macro/micro) post-workout because of increased insulin sensitivity and blood flow.

    In Pursuit of Healthiness, Only to Achieve Happiness!: www.livingnotsurviving.com

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    Then wouldn't increased insulin sensitivity maximize the storage of large carb intake post workout?

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    The energy that's normally stored in your muscles (not fat) is used up during a good workout, so when you eat carbs after a workout, your body refills those stores before adding fat to your body.
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    ~Christine

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    Insulin is produced when excess glucose is in the blood. Insulin puts glucose into fat storage. If your glycogen (muscle energy reserves) are low, glucose is stored there preferentially.

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    Your body has Glycogen (carbohydrate) depots in both liver and muscles, and strenuous workouts can deplete those. However, it takes a very strenuous workout for that, and your body usually holds onto these depots even despite of workouts - afaik it rather uses gluconeogenesis (converting protein to glucose) than depleting the liver glycogen depot, because that is intended to be a reserve for emergencies.

    IMO the better solution is to optimize your fat metabolism and to train your body to make do without touching the glycogen reserves in the first place, or in any case to replenish them with gluconeogenesis. Don't worry about your body cannibalizing lean tissue for that - on a PB diet you consume enough dietary protein to avoid that.

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    MikeEnRegalia, I tend to agree. I have heard that it is overstated the amount of carbohydrates that are needed after a workout. I don't think that there has been any definitive study yet that can provide a measure of how many carbs are sufficient to replenish glycogen store.

    However, if there is going to be any time that you want to have more carbs just to eat them, it's probably best to do it after a strenuous workout since there is a little more of a calorie deficit than normal. This is just my opinion.

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    Don't PWO carbs stop hormone production of some sort?
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    I'm pretty sure this is covered in the Primal Blueprint book. I think Mark says if diary isn't an issue for you, that drinking full-fat milk after a strenuous workout is okay.

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    RP, testosterone is up-regulated with insulin, Growth hormone production potentially stopped. So if you're more in-tune with fat loss, having carbs pre-workout may be better then post, whereas if you want more muscle production, having carbs post workout would be in your best interest.

    In Pursuit of Healthiness, Only to Achieve Happiness!: www.livingnotsurviving.com

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