Forget your protein shakes and bars. A new study suggests that for bigger and better muscles more protein isn’t the answer. Instead you need to eat the same amount and distribute it into more equal portions throughout the day.

The study analyzed healthy adults who ate a total of 90 grams of protein in the form of lean beef throughout the day, HealthDay reports. This is the average daily amount of protein consumed by Americans, even though the recommended amount is actually only about 60 grams. One diet involved 30 grams equally for three meals. The second had participants consume 10 grams at breakfast, 15 grams at lunch, and 65 grams at dinner.

Results showed that in those who equally distributed their protein intake, the muscle production was 25 percent higher than those who had an uneven intake. These findings will perhaps change the way that those trying to gain muscle diet. "Usually, we eat very little protein at breakfast, a bit more at lunch and then consume a large amount at night. When was the last time you had just 4 ounces of anything during dinner at a restaurant?" study leader and muscle metabolism expert Doug Paddon-Jones explained, according to HealthDay. According to Paddon-Jones, Americans are not consuming enough protein for efficient muscle building and repair during the day, and in the evenings they are consuming too much. “We run the risk of having this excess oxidized, and ending up as glucose or fat,” Paddon-Jones added.

The answer to optimal muscle production is not eating more protein, but more equally distributing the amount you already eat. “You just have to be a little more thoughtful with how you apportion it,” Paddon-Jones explained.  Some ways to add a bit more protein into your morning meals are perhaps replacing carbohydrates with high-quality protein. An egg, a glass of milk, yogurt, or even a handful or nuts has nearly 30 grams of protein. It is advised that you again eat 30 grams of protein with your lunch, and curb your dinner protein intake to be no more than 30 grams. "Do this, and over the course of the day you will likely spend much more time synthesizing muscle protein,” Paddon-Jones concluded.

Proteins are large complex molecules that do most of the work in cells necessary for structure, function, and regulation of the body’s tissues and organs. Protein is a component of every major body system and every fluid, except for bile and urine. It helps your body transport oxygen in your red blood cells and supports your immune system. It is also necessary for muscle repair and growth. When an individual consumes larger amounts of protein the body will begin building new muscle. When you consume more protein then you need, instead of becoming muscle it will become fatty acids and sugar.

Source: Mamerow M M, Mettler JA, English KL, Casperson SL, et al. Dietary Protein Distribution Positively Influences 24-h Muscle Protein Synthesis in Healthy Adults. The Journal of Nutrition. 2014