CHAPTER 6: Egg Protein in Sports Nutrition
Published:01 May 2019
Dietary protein, in particular, is related to various processes, such as muscle remodeling, augmenting glycogen re-synthesis under certain conditions, energy production and maintenance of non-muscle structural tissues, all of which impact physical performance. More importantly, provision of adequate and high-quality protein after a bout of exercise supports the whole-body and the muscle adaptive response to exercise. As such, protein recommendations for athletes have been shown to be higher than what is recommended for the general public and are estimated to be ∼1.2 to 2.0 g−1 kg body weight−1 day−1. In terms of meeting these protein recommendations, isolated protein supplements are commonly ingested by athletes. The popularity of isolated protein sources among athletes can be primarily attributed to convenience as opposed to being superior in terms of stimulating an exercise-adaptive response when compared to protein-dense food ingestion. However, there are limited studies available on the effect of post-exercise ingestion of protein-rich whole food as compared to protein supplements. In the sports nutrition realm, the potential of protein-rich and nutrient-dense whole foods such as eggs has yet to be fully examined. However, given the robust nutritional profile, low cost and culinary versatility of eggs, athletes would benefit from including these in their usual diet and/or as a targeted post-exercise nutritional strategy.