Minnetonka High School's Student News

Minnetonka Breezes

Minnetonka High School's Student News

Minnetonka Breezes

Minnetonka High School's Student News

Minnetonka Breezes

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Let’s Talk Protein

Lets+Talk+Protein
Sasha Cox

In the Dock, there is only one coffee flavored drink, and it contains 200 mg of caffeine. Those facts alone would make it staggeringly popular if not for its one fatal flaw: it’s a protein shake, and as a result, tastes disgusting.

Dani Sommer, ’27, disagrees. She is an avid drinker of protein shakes, specifi­cally Soylent, both because she likes the taste and believes that the extra protein provided by protein supplements is necessary to build muscle. Leo Thull, ’26, says that “protein shakes don’t taste the best, but they seem like a smart idea:·

Of this belief, how much is true and how much is simply a myth?

Protein is necessary to muscle growth, but not as much as is believed. Muscle growth is not driven by protein intake, but rather through work with resis­ tance training and proper rest. Eating a balanced diet with enough calories and carbs, with the right amount of protein and exercise is the best way to build muscle quickly and efficiently. Protein should be eaten in small amounts throughout the day to optimize digestion, and is most effective when eaten 30 minutes within a workout.

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The recommended dietary allowance (RDA) of protein for teens is 46 grams for girls and 52 grams for boys per day. Most teen athletes easily consume two to three times the RDA everyday through normal meals. However, if an ath­ lete is taking protein supplements in addition to receiving plenty of protein through their meals, dehydration can become a serious problem, causing fa­ tigue and strain on the kidneys.

Not to mention, protein supplements are not monitored by the FDA, so companies are able to say and put whatever they want on and in the product.

When purchasing supplements, make sure to research the ingredients and brand thoroughly. Chocolate milk is considered to be a perfect after workout drink, with the hest ratio of carhs to protein (4:1) for muscle growth. It is also much cheaper than protein shakes.

Despite these downsides, teens with dietary restric­ tions like veganism, who can’t easily access protein through their meals, could actually benefit from protein supplements. Some students have claimed that when struggling with executive dysfunction around food, things like protein shakes are easy ways of getting nu­ trition. In cases like these, protein supplements can he essential in maintaining a balanced diet.

When considering whether to use supplements, al­ ways do what is hest for you and your lifestyle, not what is popular or being advertised.

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