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The thing is I have this trendy Mutant Muscle Gainer that advises me to take 4 cups of it in a day when I workout - 2 cups before the workout and 2 cups after. This goes pretty well to me. But the thing is, however, that I feel a little bit ashamed when I don't drink it during the days I'm not exercising - I'm drinking it to gain weight mass, but I'm not drinking it regularly as I'm only going to the gym 3 days a week.

Should I be bothered at all? Or should I drink this thing each and every day?

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Just a personal opinion: What speaks against natural carbs as weight gainer, e.g. oat meal, brown rice,... ? –  mchlfchr Sep 27 '13 at 8:27
    
@mchlfchr They are not enough and I have a very tight life schedule that I sometimes forget to eat :D –  SergiusGee Sep 27 '13 at 9:16
    
No excuses. :) Buy yourself a blender, put in some milled nuts, fruits, oats and fill it up with milk/water. This is still portable. You also get more essential nutrients and you don't mess up your body with chemical (and far more expensive) weight gainer products. Spend the saved money for a good whey protein instead. –  mchlfchr Sep 27 '13 at 11:55
    
@mchlfchr Hmm, that's a great idea) Think it will work better?) –  SergiusGee Sep 27 '13 at 21:09

2 Answers 2

Muscle gainers, protein shakes and the like are supplements. They are meant to supplement your diet if it is lacking in certain essential requirements.

If you have investigated what your daily calorie and macro-nutrient requirements are, and you find yoruself falling short of what is neccessary to meet your goals, they yes continue to take them. However, consider that they are, again there to supplement your nutrition and where possible the bulk of your food intake should come from food, preferably, unprocessed whole foods to ensure that you are getting a diverse variety of essential vitamins and minerals.

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Some things to think about, assuming you "gainer" product is one of the many whey protein (+ creatine?) powder:

  1. The manufacturer will always tell you to take too much of it (and sell more of it that way)
  2. Supplement taking does not gain muscle, hard work in the gym does
  3. Extra protein intake can help maximize result of the hard work, and help with recovery, and is usually consumed right after exercise.
  4. Too much protein can be bad for your kidneys especially for people with pre-existing conditions

so if it was me, i would limit my intake to half the recommendation, and only right after workouts. But that's just me.

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While I'm with you on the rest, I don't agree with 4. I have yet to see proof that someone without a preexisting kidney condition has damaged their kidney with 'too much' protein (provided they drank enough). The article you linked only has a recommendation the BDA and no data to support that recommendation. Don't get me wrong, if there're reliable sources to support your claim, I do want to read them. Until then I have to consider kidney damage through protein FUD, though. –  LarissaGodzilla May 15 at 7:12
    
@LarissaGodzilla, I don't necessarily disagree with you, hence I phrased it 'can be' and not 'is'. I know of one guy first-hand in the gym that developed serious kidney problems directly linked to his enthusiastic protein supplementation (it went away almost as soon as he stopped taking the shakes). All I'm saying is you should not assume that taking large amount of protein is safe for everyone. I see a large proportion of people taking too much of it, without really putting the work in and without adjusting the rest of their diet ... result is they just get fat. –  zeFrenchy May 15 at 9:23
    
I'm not assuming it's safe for everyone, hence my comments on drinking enough and pre-existing conditions. I do think it's perfectly safe, though, if people use their brain and read up on hydration issues and such. Of course, I shouldn't have left that last part unsaid in my original comment. I just tend to (wrongly) assume that people care about their bodies. –  LarissaGodzilla May 15 at 9:29
    
@LarissaGodzilla, I edited the post to reflect your point. Many people just love simple solutions. Want muscle => drink protein shakes all day! They also extrapolate badly. Want muscle but don't want hard workouts => drink even more protein-shakes!! –  zeFrenchy May 15 at 9:46
    
In hindsight, I might have taken your original point the wrong way. I'm glad we've discussed this, though, hopefully other people will find it helpful, too. Regarding people: They will always want something for nothing and weight gainers are a very good example for that. I think South Park did a great job of pointing that out. BEEFCAKE! :) –  LarissaGodzilla May 15 at 10:06

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