Chris Q wrote:


I’ve been taking ZMA for a little while now and had a question for you.  (Maybe explain to your readers what it is?)  I was wondering if it will react with any of the protein I am taking? 

Thanks!  I love your site!
Chris Q

Picture of a bottle of ZMA Optimum Nutrition
Here's one brand. I've never tried this one..




For the readers, ZMA is Zinc monomethionine Magnesium Aspartate, a supplement that has been shown to help with muscle recovery, improving endurance, and even allowing for better sleep.  ZMA is made up of Zinc, Magnesium and Vitamin B6 and while some manufacturers have stated it has an effect on growth hormones (causing muscle growth), it has not been proven in any study.

What is known is that during intense exercise, athletes deplete magnesium and zinc reserves within their body.  Zinc is essential for protein synthesis and muscle repair and immune system strength while magnesium is needed for muscle function and nervous system processes, and the B6 helps the ZM part of ZMA work.  While many manufacturers claim their ZMA is better than the others, I stick with the basics..just the general ZMA from GNC or Vitamin Shoppe is good, though I stay away from the hardened pill form and go with capsules.   I take it regularly, in fact, I swear by it for weight loss and muscle recovery.  I take protein in the AM and around 7 or 8, and I’ve seen great results from taking it.

To answer your other question, yes, it will react with your protein if taken within 2 hours of each other.  It’s not a dangerous reaction by any means though, the calcium in the protein will just cancel out the benefit of the ZMA by blocking the absorption.  If you’re taking a night time protein like I do, you’ll have to take it at least 2 (I go for three) hours BEFORE taking ZMA so it has time to be utilized by the body.

I’m glad you’ve found ZMA.  I recommend it for anyone in a gym routine or anyone looking to lose weight.  It’s awesome stuff.