Protein timing has been a subject of debate since protein powders first became available. A study recently published in the journal Nutrition Reviews offers interesting suggestions based on whether your goal is weight gain, weight management or weight loss.
Researchers found that consuming protein supplements between meals can decrease compensatory eating which contributes to increased energy intake and body weight. On the other hand, engaging in a resistance training program and consuming protein supplements twice daily with meals tends to reduce overall food consumption.
In 34 randomized controlled trials with 59 groups, researchers found 56% of subjects increased body weight when consuming protein supplements with meals versus 72% who used the supplements between meals. 94% of subjects supplementing with meals increased muscle mass versus 90% in the between meals group, and 87% of subjects supplementing with meals reduced fat mass compared to 59% in the between meals group.