Maximize Performance: Carbs & Aminos for Athletes

Andrew Huberman and Dr. Andy Galpin cut through the clutter with evidence-based insights on carbohydrates, amino acids, and the much-debated ‘anabolic window.’ 

Get set to fuel your workout wisdom with their expert discussion, shattering myths and laying out practical strategies for how to charge your body’s engine for optimal performance—whether you’re an avid marathon runner or a dedicated gym enthusiast.

Carbohydrate Loading; Amino Acid Supplements; “Anabolic Window”

Let’s talk carbs. Athletes often ask how carbs affect their game. Dr. Galpin pointed out it’s not just about eating a giant pasta dinner before an event. Instead, he recommended slowly increasing carb intake over several days. 

This method effectively maximizes the body’s glycogen stores, setting the athlete up for optimal performance.

Now, onto amino acids. The debate around branch chain amino acids (BCAAs) and essential amino acids (EAAs) can get heated. 

Dr. Galpin cuts through the noise with practical advice. If you’re getting enough protein in your diet, extra supplements might not be necessary. 

But for those falling short, EAAs could be a game changer. That said, BCAAs might be an unwelcome hit to your wallet if you’re already meeting protein goals

For individuals with dietary restrictions or preferences, Dr. Galpin suggested supplementing with quality whey or vegan options loaded with EAAs for better recovery and performance.

The elusive ‘anabolic window’ also came up for discussion. This is the window believed to snap open right after a workout, ready to gulp down nutrients for muscle repair and growth. 

Dr. Galpin clarified that yes, there’s a period post-exercise when the body yearns for nutrients. Hydration, muscle glycogen, and tissue rebuilding are key during this time. 

But the idea that protein must be consumed within 30 to 60 minutes after a workout might be a bit exaggerated. 

What really matters is how much protein you eat all day, not the timing. Nevertheless, the timing does matter when it comes to recharging with carbs, especially for athletes with several training sessions in one day.

Carb loading, amino acids, the anabolic window—it all depends on you. Your body, your diet, your training routine dictate your nutrition needs.

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