How To Properly Use Protein Powder

Why Use Protein Powder

Protein Powder: How to Best Use It For Muscle Growth (4 Things You Need to Know)

If you want to slim down or gain muscle, protein powders are a convenient, affordable and hassle-free place to start. One of proteins most important jobs is to repair and build cells in the body, including muscles that are damaged while exercising.

Ryan says: Protein helps restore and retain muscle, and the more muscles we have the more calories we burn. While a high protein diet can help weight loss as protein takes longer to digest and is so filling.

Studies have found this clever macronutrient can even make us less likely to overeat. This is in part thanks to proteins ability to reduce the level of hunger hormone ghrelin, while boosting levels of peptide YY .

Dee Momi, chef, nutritionist and founder at protein shake company MINT adds: When it comes to weight loss, shakes with a high protein content can rev up your metabolism because of the number of calories needed to digest it – up to 30% of calories from protein are burned compared with around 10% of calories from carbohydrates. High protein drinks also encourage fullness and satiety so we feel satisfied, which is essential when trying to lose weight and keep blood sugar levels balanced.

Lots of protein powder brands include natural fat-burning ingredients in their products, such as green tea and metabolism-boosters, L-carnitine and CLA, which can promote weight loss.

Protein Powder Is Cheaper Than Eating Food

Okay, now let me talk about myself and give you my view on it. I use protein powder myself. I use it because it’s a way to realistically get my daily protein requirements in without breaking the bank. When you really think about it, protein powder is usually cheaper than eating.

Yes, it’s more convenient but convenience isn’t really the reason I drink 1 2 shakes/day. It’s really just cost purposes, I spend so much money on food outside of just protein powder, that protein sort of tallies it down a bit for me.

Think about it for a second, if you were to spend $30 on a jug of protein and you could make that last you 2 weeks if you had 2 scoops per day, then that $30 in 2 weeks is more than likely going to be cheaper than chicken, fish, or beef.

Let’s be real here, food has gotten extremely expensive nowadays!

So yes, I use protein powder, more for cost than anything.

Choosing A Protein Powder

  • 1Select whey protein powder for a pre-workout option. Whey protein powder is made with a byproduct of the cheese making process and is one of the most popular varieties. While there is a debate as to whether protein drinks are better before or after a workout, whey protein is quickly digested and can serve as a boost of energy and fitness before a workout.
  • You can drink whey protein after a workout too, as its quick digestion helps your muscles repair themselves very quickly.
  • 2Choose casein or pea protein powder to encourage slow digestion. Casein is a chemical that comes from milk, and while whey is quickly digested, casein takes a long time to break down. The same goes for pea protein powder, as it gradually releases amino acids as you digest it. Choose these protein powders for a late-night drink you can digest while you sleep.
  • Casein comes from animal products and therefore is not suitable for vegan diets. If you want to digest your protein powder slowly and don’t want animal products, opt for pea powder instead.
  • 3Try soy or egg protein powder for their amino acid content. Soy and egg protein powder contains essential amino acids that help to grow muscle rather than repair it. The protein content is just the same as others, making soy and egg protein powder great for those looking to build muscle quickly.
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    /6when You Want To Lose Weight

    Snacking on protein sources is one of the best ways to induce satiety in the body and thus aid weight loss goals. Protein shake mixed with water is easier to digest. It also helps the body extract vital nutrients needed to recover faster post-workout and repair sore muscles.

    Filling up on a protein shake mixed with water along with the right serving of fruits and veggies can be more nutritious and filling and help you fuel up your metabolism, thus making you lose fat faster too.

    Choose A Base And Mixing Method

    Guide to Protein Powder Supplements

    Select the appropriate liquid for your taste as well as your dietary needs. Consider the flavor of the protein powder, the desired consistency and temperature and whether or not you need to limit your intake of calories or carbohydrates.

    Although manufacturers’ labels recommend water, other possible choices include milk of any type , juice, coffee, tea, lemonade, pudding or yogurt.

    Choose your mixing equipment. Plain shakes blend well with a spoon, fork or shaker cup. If you plan to add fruit, ice or other ingredients, however, you’ll need a blender.

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    Be Mindful Of Your Goal

    Heres what you might want to consider depending on your goals, and what youre hoping to get out of your protein shake.

    Weight loss / fat loss: If youre looking to lose fat, pay attention to the protein-to-calorie ratio of your protein powder. The best protein powder for weight loss will be higher in protein and lower in carbs and fat, since the latter two macronutrients will be more satisfying coming from whole foods.

    Muscle gain: To put on muscle, look for a protein powder with a high protein-to-calorie ratio, as the main goal is to consume adequate overall protein. If youre struggling to get adequate overall calories, a protein powder thats also rich in carbohydrates can be helpful around workouts.

    Weight gain: For those who are looking to gain any type of weightmost often this is due to illness that reduces appetiteconsider powders that are high in protein, carbohydrates, and fat. Particularly if you wont be getting much other nutrition, its important to get all three.

    Meal replacement: If you plan to use your protein shake as a meal replacement, its important to get some other nutrients in there, too. While there are protein powders that come with additional nutrients built-in, we recommend making your own Super Shake instead by incorporating fruit, vegetables, a source of healthy fats, and possibly more. That way, you get all the whole-food benefits of these ingredients.

    The Muscle Full Effect

    How much protein we should actually consume in one serving is a subject of debate by scientists. Most believe that around 20-25g of protein is the optimal amount for maximising muscle protein synthesis. Anything greater than this is thought to be used for energy or excreted in our urine.

    The point at which maximum muscle protein synthesis has been achieved in our muscles has been termed the muscle full effect. The idea is that muscle protein synthesis is only elevated for around 90-120 minutes after ingesting protein, before it returns to normal. This is even despite amino acids continuing to be available in the blood stream, stimulating muscle protein synthesis further.

    This has led some people to suggest that there is a finite amount of protein that the muscle can use in one sitting, and that we should let blood amino acid levels return to baseline levels before the next meal. This observation came from research investigating whey protein. Whey protein is unique in that its amino acid levels appear and peak within the bloodstream rapidly and for only a short time following ingestion. Whey is considered a fast-acting protein.

    So, do we really need protein supplements to get fit and look food? Well, probably not, as experts recommend we consume whole-food sources wherever possible. But if the protein supplement allows you to meet your daily protein needs, then it probably wont hurt.

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    Cooking With Protein Powder & Baking With Protein Powder For Breading

    Unflavored soy, soy/whey blend, or rice protein powder is a decent flour substitute. Dip poultry or fish into beaten egg and then dredge it in herbed protein powder and fry it. Or you can mix an egg, a little cream and water, and the protein powder to make a batter. I have used MLO and Naturades soy/whey blends and they are good, basic, all-purpose flour substitutes. Some soy and soy/whey powders are Fearns, Doctors Diet, MLO, and Naturade. We should count Atkins Bake Mix in this category, as well.

    Rice protein powder makes a more delicate breading, but its carb count is slightly higher. For those avoiding soy, though, it is an excellent substitute. Nutribiotics and MLO make rice protein powders, but MLO is more than double the carb count of Nutribiotics, so I recommend the former.

    How To Use Protein Powder: Your Simple Step

    How to Use Whey Protein Powder

    What is the best protein powder to use?

    How much protein powder should I take per day?

    When is the best time to drink it?

    Most beginning lifters highly over-complicate the issue of proper protein powder use, typically viewing it as some sort of high tech muscle building supplement that must be consumed in a very specific way to obtain the benefits.

    In reality, like the name implies, protein powders are nothing more than just that: powdered protein.

    Whether its whey, egg, casein or a vegan source, all protein powders are ultimately derived from whole foods and are simply a means of meeting your daily protein needs in a more convenient way.

    Rather than thinking of protein powders as being supplements in a category of their own, its actually more accurate to just think of them as regular food products.

    For that reason, asking how to use protein powder is really no different from asking how to use chicken or how to use beef.

    The use of a protein powder is simply an optional add-on to your diet, and its just a question of whether you prefer eating regular solid foods only as a way of obtaining your daily protein or if you enjoy the taste and convenience that protein powder shakes and recipes provide.

    If you have decided to include a protein powder in your plan, this step-by-step protein powder guide will answer the 3 most common questions surrounding this topic:

  • Which protein powder should you use?
  • How much protein powder should you take daily?
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    Do You Need To Use Protein Powder A Nutritionist Weighs In

    You may have seen your neighbor or co-worker running around with a shaker or jar full of an opaque-looking drink. More likely than not its a protein shake, and they could be drinking it for any number of reasons. Protein powder is a hot ingredient and sales of it are expected to climb at a growth rate of 8.4% from now until 2028. If youve never used one, you may be asking yourself if you need one. The answer is maybe.

    How To Use Protein Powders

    If you calculate your protein intake and determine that youâre not getting enough for your athletic needs how can you best use protein powders to help you improve your performance?

    First, ignore the conventional wisdom, which says to take protein powders immediately after a workout. âBefore, during, and after a workout, carbs are what your body needs. Theyâre what your body uses for fuel, and what your muscles run on,â says Lewin. âYes, protein is also important for recovery after a workout, but research shows that at that point, the body needs fuel with a 4-1 or 5-1 ratio of carbs to protein.â Since most protein powders have at least 20 grams of protein per scoop, youâd need about 80 grams of carbs to go with that scoop to get the proper proportion of nutrients!

    For a better ârecovery drinkâ after a workout, Lewin recommends a fruit smoothie with yogurt or milk, or, surprisingly, chocolate milk. âA glass of chocolate milk is one of the best things for recovery,â she says.

    So when should you use protein powders, if youâve determined you need them to get more protein in your diet? Throughout the day as a snack or meal replacement, says Lewin, but not in the immediate time period surrounding your workouts.

    And donât forget, says Conn: âProtein powders are not really necessary if you have access to a normal, healthy diet.â

    Show Sources

    Barbara Lewin, RD, LD, dietitian and sports nutritionist, Ft. Myers, Fla.

    Alabama Cooperative Extension System.

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    Should You Take A Protein Supplement

    Most women, even those who are training hard, can meet all of their protein requirements for muscle recovery by including regular portions of high-quality protein in their daily meals.

    A 2015 systematic review conducted by the US Army Research Institute of Environmental Medicine found that for untrained participants, taking a protein powder supplement in the initial weeks of resistance training, had no effect on muscle strength or lean muscle mass.

    As training duration, frequency and volume increase, a protein supplement may promote an increase in muscle size, strength, endurance and power.

    In 2020, the Harvard School of Medicine advises that protein supplements are a processed food that may contain additives, sugars, flavours and other chemicals. Further, protein supplements arent regulated in most countries, which means that the claims on the label are the manufacturers claims safety and labelling of the products isnt monitored and any claims are not generally independently verified.

    A 2018 study by a non-profit group called the Clean Label Project found that protein powders can also contain other contaminants that contribute to adverse health outcomes.

    According to a 2019 literature review by the Louisville School of Medicine in the US, protein supplementation should be a short-term solution to meet training demands, and should not replace long-term healthy eating habits.

    Low Carbohydrate Protein Powders Come In Several Different Types

    How To Properly Use WHEY Protein
    • soy-based
    • whey-based
    • egg/milk blend
    • rice-based.

    They are not interchangeable, because each kind brings some traits from its source: taste, texture, the way it reacts to cooking, blend-ability, and protein and carbohydrate content.

    Notice I dont have soy flour on that list? Soy flour is made from soybeans, but has a considerably higher carb content. Soy protein isolate is made from soy flour with the carbs and some fat and fiber removed. I have bought exactly one package of soy flour and cooked with it 4 times. I just dont like the bitter soy-ish taste. Soy protein isolate, however, is basically flavorless.

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    Why Is Protein Powder Good For Weight Loss

    As you probably realize, protein powders are very high in protein, which may have you wondering how it can help you drop those extra pounds. In order to lose weight, you must burn off more calories than you are consuming throughout the day, hence the importance of exercising. You want your diet to be comprised of food items that are high in nutrients but low in calories. Highly processed foods, like chips and white bread, often contain a lot of added sugars, which can cause health issues like increased risk of heart disease while also boost your calorie intake without providing any nutrients.

    Protein powders are a great snack replacement because they are often low in calories but high in other nutrients your body requires, including protein, calcium, iron and magnesium, amongst others. When purchasing a protein powder, however, you want to carefully examine the ingredients to ensure that there are no artificial ingredients or added sugars. Some companies will mix in sugar to make the protein powder taste better, but it can greatly hurt your fitness goals.

    How To Mix Protein Powder

    Americans get more than enough protein by eating a varied diet, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Most adults need between 46 and 56 grams of protein a day, although some may require more due to chronic health conditions, weight-loss surgery, fitness level or other factors.

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    Commercially manufactured powders provide a convenient source of protein when mixed as a shake, but only medically supervised patients should use them as substitutes for all meals, as they lack fiber and other nutrients, according to the Mayo Clinic.

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    What Is Protein Powder

    Protein is whatâs known as a macronutrient, meaning itâs one of the three essential nutrients we need every day to live and stay healthy. The other macronutrients besides protein are carbohydrates and fat.

    Protein powders are forms of edible protein which has been finely ground or milled to achieve a powder which can be mixed together with liquid to achieve a shake, or added to baked goods and even savoury foods.

    The protein in protein powder can come from various sources, both plant and animal-based. These include whey and casin , beef, egg, soy, hemp, rice and pea protein.

    Developing A Workout Routine

    Best Ways To Use Protein Powder | Easy & Tasty Recipes

    While drinking protein shakes can certainly help you to meet your goals of losing weight, just incorporating shakes into your diet is not enoughexercise is key to losing weight. Because you must burn more calories than you consume in order to drop pounds, you may want to focus on high-intensity workouts. Cardio is one of the best ways to burn a lot of calories quickly. Running or cycling are popular cardio workouts that will help you to work up a sweat, burn calories and strengthen other parts of your body like your core and legs.

    Most people who are trying to lose weight will focus on building up muscles in their core, but your initial goal should be to burn off excess fat before trying to build the lean muscle underneath. Swimming, rowing, using the elliptical and jumping rope are other great calorie-burning workouts. As you notice your weight beginning to drop, you can start to integrate more strength-building exercises into your routine.

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