Vukovich, M. D., Tausz, S. M., Ballard, T. L., Stevermer, C. L., Gerlach, A. M., Vander Weerd, M. K., Binkley, T. L., & Specker, B. L. (2004). Effect of protein supplementation during a 6-month strength and conditioning program on muscular strength. Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise, 36(5), Supplement abstract 1368.

This study determined the effect of high protein intake on strength adaptations during a six-month strength and conditioning program. Ss (M = 28; F = 23; 18-25 yr) were assigned to a group to receive a protein supplement (42 g protein, 24 g carbohydrate, 2 g fat; Myoplex) or a carbohydrate drink (70 g carbohydrate) of equal caloric and micronutrient value twice daily. Ss were active, healthy, but untrained. Exercise training consisted of resistance training and running on alternating days. Resistance training involved two sets of ten repetitions followed by one set to fatigue at 70% of 1 RM for 10 different exercises. Running consisted of 45 minutes at 70- 90% of maximal heart rate.

There was no difference in caloric intake between groups or overtime. Protein intake including supplements, was twice as great for the protein group (2.2 g/kg body weight) vs. the placebo group (1.1 g/kg body weight). There were significant changes in 1-RM strength over time and between groups. Gains in strength at six months were greater in the protein condition than in the carbohydrate condition for males in the both the bench press and hip sled exercises but for females only in the bench press.

Implication. Protein supplementation over an extended period was associated with significant strength increases in both males and females when compared to carbohydrate supplementation.

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