If you are preparing for a body comp or just seeking extra protein to supplement your diet this could determine what type of protein powder you use. If you are bodybuilding, muscle protein synthesis is essential for growth and repair. Drinking protein shakes after workouts for extra the amino acid intake – the building blocks of protein – is a part of every day life. Even better, supporting this with an additional branch chain amino acids (BCAAs) drink during workouts puts you solidly in the game of growth and maintenance (look for leucine, isoleucine and valine on the nutrient table).
Let’s take a quick snap shot at various types of protein sources and their fallbacks:
- Casein protein is slow to synthesise
- Egg protein powder is even slower
- Pea protein lacks in one amino acid (cystine which is used to make enzymes that snip protein molecules into smaller sizes and configurations for absorption)
- Soy protein has isoflavins likely to increase estrogen (negating muscle growth if taken frequently)
- Hemp protein is high fat (meaning it ideally should not be consumed 3 hours aside of a workout)
- and rice protein is low in the amino acid lysine (an essential amino acid assisting with the formation of muscle tissue)
This leaves us with whey protein. Whey is fast absorbing, feeding the muscles with protein fairly quickly and efficiently straight after it is consumed with all 9 essential amino acids (EAAs). Our organs only create 11 amino acids and the rest are EAAs that are only gained through consumption from our diet. There are two types of whey you could go for: concentrate or isolate. Whey isolate and whey concentrate both go through a filtering process to remove carbs, fats and lactose however, concentrate contains only 80% protein whereas isolate is 90% protein as it goes through an extra filter for further purity. Ultimately, the nutrients in whey help prevent the breakdown of muscle tissue, promote muscle repair, promote fat loss, promote health and boost the immune system.
Look for a protein without added sugars, artificial sweeteners or colours, dye, low sodium, low carb (unless you are bulking) and low fat. These are my top 5 recommended brands:
If you are only looking to supplement your diet and prefer a plant-based protein mix check out these brands with pre or probiotics for amazing health benefits:
Nutrition Express (n.d). Frequently Asked Questions about Whey Protein. Retrieved from http://www.nutritionexpress.com/article+index/protein/whey+protein/showarticle.aspx?id=155
Duvall, J. (2014). How to Choose the Best Protein Powder for You. Retrieved from http://dailyburn.com/life/health/best-protein-powder-whey-casein-vegan/
Eitel, J. (2011). The Breakdown of Whey Protein Amino Acids. Retrieved from http://www.livestrong.com/article/518213-the-breakdown-of-whey-protein-amino-acids/