Heavy strength training and Huel?

I am going to embark on a strength journey, and I would like to use Huel for it. The macro looks great, although 2 scoops yield 2311mg leucine, I would need to consume 3 scoops to hit 3466mg (3-4g leucine is needed to trigger MPS). This will increase the 10 scoops/2000kcal to 15 scoops/3000kcal a day to trigger MPS 5 times.

Macros per day would be:

Fat: 96g
Carbs: 285g
Protein: 218g

So it would get 50% more expensive as I would need 50% more powder.

Compare this to Huel Black, 2 scoops yield 3452mg, instead of 3 scoops for the white, although Black is missing carbs. But I would not need to buy 50% more packages. I can just add carbs to the shake myself, like oats or rice. I think going 2 scoops Black + oats from the store would be cheaper than 3 scoops of white (I have not done any comparison yet).

My two questions:

  1. Would Huel white/Black work with heavy strength training?
  2. Would you recommend going 3 scoops white or 2 scoops Black and carbs added in on the side?

As long as you get enough calories and the right amount of macronutrients it does not matter from what source you get them, as Huel can also be considered to be a “normal” food. You could use both regular Huel, Huel black and other meal replacements (the products of most of the other companies are cheaper and contain more carbs than Huel). You should not forget that adding a pure carb source won’t give you the right amount of micronutrients. This is of special importance if you want to live on meal replacements only.

Did I read correctly that muscle protein synthesis doesn’t trigger without consuming at least 3 grams of leucine with every meal?

Bioavailability issues mean that if consuming excess protein for muscle repair/building and looking for optimal uptake you should strongly consider a BCAA supplement with a 2:1:1 ratio of leucine, isoleucine, and valine.

Also personally, I used to swear by ZMA at night but that may be psychosomatic as the jury appears to remain strongly out with respect to decently conducted studies.

If an athlete has applied enough stress to the system, then yes, 3-4g of leucine triggers muscle protein synthesis. If you do consume less it will not trigger afaik. MPS is most efficient to trigger every 3-5 hours. That makes around 4-5 meals a day.

Hi @Tastemaster

It depends - both are useful and you need to look at whole diet. Personally, I use 1.25 scoops of each per shake (which is really nice, as well!) - that’s 500kcal and plenty of protein, carbs and leucine.

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I am quite confident that none of my meals have contained 3-4g of leucine but I am extremely fit and muscle protein synthesis has definitely triggered without such a large amount of leucine. An example of fitness: I can do 6 one-arm pushups (with either arm) without ever specifically training for it, I tried that exercise out for the first time about 2 weeks ago as I read that if you can do 1 one-arm pushup then you’re fitter than 95% of people who go to the gym. That percentage is most likely just made up but out of my friends no one else can do a one-arm pushup although we’re all fit.

Disclaimer: I have done pushups twice a week for a while so you could say that I was slightly trained for it but an one-arm pushup is quite different from a regular one.

93.6% of statistics are made up out of thin air.

What you described is a bit like how IQ tests work - all they do is determine who is good at IQ tests, nothing more.

Likewise, all that one armed press-up stat does is prove that you’re capable of doing one armed press-ups. I don’t mean to sound disparaging but that is not really a good indicator in terms of assessing your overall strength and/or fitness!

My main point was that muscle protein synthesis triggers without 3g of leucin, leucin might just help a bit.

I am visibly fit, was told that I have perfect results during my extensive checkup that I have to do after every few years because of the law and my resting heart rate is under 50. One-arm pushups was just an example. For example I can do over 20 pullups and you can pick out any classical physical exercise in which I will score highly. My training regime consists of full body workouts aiming for functional strength and health so the aforementioned things should make sense. Being good at a wide range of compound exercises should be a good indicator of being fit.

I can agree with your point about a range of exercises for sure! That’s a great indicator of general fitness and strength :+1:t3:

What do you squat, bench and deadlift?

If you neglect 3-4g leucine then recovery will be sub-optimal and why do something at X% slower than maximum speed? Just google and read the first articles, like this one: https://www.barbellmedicine.com/blog/7-rules-to-optimize-protein-intake/

Good advice, thanks. Will look into splitting white/black for most optimal macros.

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