Opportunities in Protein Supplementation

April 23/Technology News Focus -- "Elite athletes require a greater dietary protein intake than recreationally active people to maintain optimal muscular function. The timing of protein ingestion relative to exercise is critical to maximizing its physiological impact on skeletal muscles," scientists in Australia report.

"Sports protein supplements provide a convenient means of supplying athletes with an adequate and timely source of quality dietary protein. There is now strong evidence that not all dietary proteins are equipotent in their effects on various aspects of athletic performance, and specific protein isolates can provide benefits to athletes beyond simple supply of nutritional amino acids. Thus, there is an opportunity to develop new functional protein supplements to maximize athletic performance," wrote R. Crittenden and colleagues.

The researchers concluded, "This paper outlines the clinical evidence for the benefits of dairy proteins in sports performance and describes the development of new dairy protein supplements to build muscle strength, and to expedite recovery of strength following muscle-damaging eccentric exercise."

Crittenden and colleagues published their study in the Australian Journal of Dairy Technology ("Functional dairy protein supplements for elite athletes." Australian Journal of Dairy Technology, 2009;64(1 Sp. Iss.):133-137).

For additional information, contact R. Crittenden, MG Nutrition, 140 Dawson St., Brunswick, Vic 3056, Australia.

From the April 27, 2009, Prepared Foods E-dition