A research paper that was published within the Journal of Applied Physiology has revealed that exercising regularly and intermittently helps amino acids form muscles with proteins.

Resistance to anabolic steroids

Research has shown that an absence of exercise increases the loss of muscle mass due to age called sarcopenia. It has been discovered to be significantly dependent on anabolic resistance the condition in which muscle are unable to make enough proteins that can be used to build tissue [22. Thus, reducing anabolic resistance is a good approach to stop or slow the degrading of the muscle, especially when it comes to the aging process [33.

Research has shown that physical activity can stimulate muscle protein growth for as long as 24 hours in young men [4]. Likewise, another study has shown that breaking up long periods of sedentary by exercising can be beneficial for insulin and glucose use [55. This paper takes this area of inquiry one step further and conducts biopsies in order to find out what happens to muscle fibers throughout the course of a single day.

Proteins that are marked demonstrate the results

The participants had the same diet, which resembles Western diets: prepared meals that contained 55% carbohydrate, 30 percent fat and 15 percent protein. A tracer was also used to determine the amount of new-to-be consumed protein was getting into the muscle. Participants were split into 3 groups: a completely non-sedentary group (SIT) as well as an exercise group that completed 15 bodyweight squats each half hour (SQUAT) and an additional group who took 2 minutes of walks every half-hour (WALK). Researchers are referring to these break-times as “activity snacks.”.

Although exercise resulted in the tracer’s ability to change in blood plasma, whereas the mean of participants was similar and the effect on the synthesis of muscle proteins were apparent within muscle tissue. There were exceptions, however but the SQUAT and in particular the WALK group had significantly higher muscle protein synthesis than the SIT group.

Incredibly, The SQUAT group, but not that of the WALK group, had an increase in a marker that is related to mTORC1. This, in this case could be a sign of protein production. The researchers speculate that WALK group may have encouraged the growth of muscles through other methods including an increase in blood flow.

A fresh approach to regular exercise

Researchers cite a previous study that showed that men who had a rest period of 10 hours following intense physical exercise did not show significant improvements in the size of their muscles [66. Although this study was conducted on younger individuals, it’s plausible to conclude that interrupting regular sedentary time could be the key to the ongoing intake of protein-building substances even in older individuals. Further research needs to be conducted to find out if ‘activity snacks’ that are consumed all day long, can be more effective than regular exercise for fighting the condition known as sarcopenia.


[1] Oikawa, S. Y., Holloway, T. M., & Phillips, S. M. (2019). The effects of reduced exercise on the health of muscles during aging Protein and exercise as alternative measures. Nutrition Frontiers 75.

[2] Wall, B. T., Dirks, M. L., Snijders, T., van Dijk, J. W., Fritsch, M., Verdijk, L. B., & van Loon, L. J. (2016). The short-term use of muscle reduces myofibrillar protein synthesis rates , and triggers anabolic resistance against protein intake. American journal of physiology-endocrinology and metabolism, 310(2), E137-E147.

[3] Oikawa, S. Y., Holloway, T. M., & Phillips, S. M. (2019). The effect of reduced exercise on muscle health as we age Protein and exercise as anti-aging strategies. The frontiers of nutrition 75.

[4] Burd, N. A., West, D. W., Moore, D. R., Atherton, P. J., Staples, A. W., Prior, T., … & Phillips, S. M. (2011). Increased sensitivity to amino acids of myofibrillar protein synthesis lasts for up-to 24 hours after exercise resistance in men who are young. The Journal of nutrition, 141(4) 568-573.

[5] Loh, R., Stamatakis, E., Folkerts, D., Allgrove, J. E., & Moir, H. J. (2020). Effects of interrupting long-term rest with breaks for physical activity on blood glucose triacylglycerol, insulin and blood glucose A thorough review of and meta-analysis. Sports Medicine, 50(2) 295-330.

[6] Bulow, J., Agergaard, J., Kjaer, M., Holm, L., & Reitelseder, S. (2016). There is no additional impact of the different kinds of physical activities on muscle protein synthesis over a 10-hour period in older men who eat the diet of a protein- and energy-rich diet. Experimental gerontology, 79, 16-25.

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