What Is Nutrient Timing?

It seems like every few months, a new trend or fad in the world of dieting takes over for a few months, only to be forgotten as quickly as it arrived. Apparently, one of the latest trends to gain popularity is nutrient timing. Essentially, this practice involves timing out when you get certain nutrients from the food you eat throughout the day based on when you wake up, exercise, and sleep, with the goal being to help you lose weight and increase energy and athleticism. There are a lot of opinions floating around about whether this practice really is beneficial or not. Before you decide for yourself whether you want to give nutrient timing (or any new or specific dietary plan) a try, it’s best to have as much information on it as possible, so you can make an informed decision regarding your health and well-being. 

The Two Key Components of Nutrient Timing

When it comes down to it, there are two essential elements to the idea of nutrient timing. The first is replenishment of carbs. The theory goes that if you consume moderate to high amounts of carbohydrates immediately following a workout or period of exercise, your body will be able to recover faster. The second element is the amount of protein you consume. Protein is important for repairing and building up muscles, so any weight you gain is more muscle-based and less fat-based. 

When it comes to carb consumption, many nutritionists agree that you only need to worry about consuming high amounts of carbs after a workout if you’re a serious athlete, competing in multiple events a day, or if your doctor has advised you to follow this dietary regimen. For many Average Joe’s, we certainly do need carbohydrates to keep our bodies fueled and energized, but it’s best to have small portions of carbohydrates throughout the day in your meals and snacks for more sustained energy. 

This same principle applies to protein intake as well. It’s definitely a good idea to start your morning off with a protein-packed meal, which can include foods such as full-fat Greek yogurt and whole eggs. This will keep you feeling fuller longer, so you’ll be less likely to indulge in unhealthy foods later in the day. You’ll want to make sure you’re getting protein throughout the day, to keep your blood sugar levels up. If you are a serious athlete, or you train every day, consuming protein shakes after a workout can be beneficial for your muscle health.


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This article is made available for general, entertainment and educational purposes only. The opinions expressed herein do not necessarily reflect those of The Joint Corp (or its franchisees and affiliates). You should always seek the advice of a licensed healthcare professional.