Optimum Nutrition: Gold Standard Whey Protein
Per 30.4g serving: 113kcal, 23.9g protein, 1.8g carbohydrates, 1.1g fat
As the go-to whey protein for many, Optimum Nutritions Whey Protein could be considered as a safe bet. But, how does it stack up? The varieties are all fairly predictable strawberry, vanilla and chocolate so no easy win there. However, the taste of each is as close as youll get without actually slurping a post-gym milkshake . Be careful with your water though, anything more than 250ml per 30g serving will rapidly diminish flavour quicker than most.
There’s a reason why this is one of the world’s most-favoured wheys and is an ideal all-rounder, especially for those looking for something simple and effective for a reasonable price.
Protein Powder Buyers Guide
Picking between the huge range of protein powders available is difficult, especially when each and every one of them makes grand promises about the effect they will have on you.
You might assume that all of them do the same job, but thats not the case. Coach spoke to Dr Daniel Fenton, clinical director and GP at London Doctors Clinic, about the differences between protein powders, how much price matters and whether they contain any ingredients you should be wary of. We then assessed the best protein powders out there using Fentons criteria and tasted them too so you have a better idea of what youre buying.
What are the key things people should look out for when choosing protein powder?
How much protein you obtain from each serving, the amino acid profile, the cost, taste and number of additives are a few key factors. I tend to focus on yield the actual amount of protein you obtain from each serving and amino acid profile.
I suggest you choose a low-fat, low-carbohydrate, high-protein powder. While you require all three to aid muscle development, balance is key.
The difference in protein content in various powders can be phenomenal. Do not simply pay for a brand name the proof is in the numbers. Look carefully at the concentration and type of included in the protein. Leucine has been shown to be one of the most important BCAAs so it should contain decent quantities.
What are the differences between the two main types of protein whey and casein?
Why You Might Consider A Protein Shake
Let’s be clear: protein shakes are not typically a necessity. “In general, people who eat a wide variety of foods are meeting their protein needs,” Brooklyn-based registered dietitian nutritionist Maya Feller tells Health. “With protein, more does not always mean better.” Different people have different protein needs, and this is something that should be worked out with a doctor. According to Feller, individuals who are particularly active and looking to gain muscle may benefit from a protein shake with 20-25 grams of protein, while those looking to supplement their diet with additional protein can potentially benefit from a shake with 12-20 grams of protein.
Kimberly Gomer, RD, LDN, director of Nutrition at Pritikin Longevity Center, stresses that protein shakes should not be consumed as meal replacements with the goal of weight loss. “The only time we say a good quality protein shake is a win is when our client needs immediate repair to their musclemostly a heavier-weight workoutor if someone needs to gain weight,” she says.
But protein alone isn’t enough to refuel post workout. “Carbs and protein are equally important for muscle recovery,” adds Kim Rose, a Florida-based registered dietitian nutritionist. So if you don’t have time for a full meal, try pairing a protein shake with a healthy carbohydrate to balance it out, suggests registered dietitian Lauren Hubert.
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What’s The Best Protein Powder For Women
With so many options on the market, it’s hard to pick the best protein powder. When determining which option is best for you, think about your body, goals and dietary needs. Underneath it all, protein powders aim to serve the same purpose. However, additives and sugar content make some choices better than others.
John’s Killer Protein Nighttime Blend
Protein source: Grass-fed, minimally-processed milk protein concentrate from U.S. dairy farms
If you’re looking to repair and regrow muscle overnight, the best protein powder to take before bed is JKP’s Nighttime Blend. The majority of the protein in this blend comes from casein. As opposed to whey, casein digests more slowly and stays in the system longer to nourish muscles.
This makes it a good option if you need a nighttime snack on workout days: It’ll help kick-start recovery and build fat-burning muscle. A small study published in the British Journal of Nutrition found that active men who consumed either casein or whey protein at night increased their next-morning metabolism by over 5 percent compared to a placebo.
Studies have shown that casein protein also contains various bioactive peptides, which have various health benefits that range from acting as an antimicrobial to providing immune support.
However, because researchers found that whey provides a better rate of protein synthesis than micellar protein alone in both young and older men, we opted for this blend of casein and whey rather than a 100% casein blend. We also picked it because JKP is extremely transparent about their protein quality, and has released their heavy metals testing so you can feel confident in purchasing their products.
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Blue Fuel: The Best Protein Powder Subscription Service
Price: Varies | Buy now from Blue Fuel
Blue Fuels nutrition service is designed to help provide the exact supplements you need to fuel your training. After a quick questionnaire that zones in on the type of sports you do and how often you do them, and asks for some basic information like age, weight and gender, Blue Fuel will recommend a box full of products for delivery at regular intervals.
These products include energy drinks and sweets, hydration sachets and a couple of protein powders. The Rebuild Protein Powder is the standard whey option, and packs a hefty 30g of protein per 40g serving. Then theres the Recovery Powder, which contains 40g of carbs as well as 30g of protein in an 80g serving, along with vitamins, to help recover after the kind of energy-sapping seasons endurance athletes or footballers might do.
You can buy these products without a subscription as well, with the Rebuild Protein Powder costing £13.99 for 500g and the Recovery Powder £17.99 for 1kg, but for the very keen amateur athlete, the subscription service is a convenient way to ensure youre getting the supplements you need at the intervals required.
Key specs Serving size: 40g Protein per serving: 30g Protein type: Blend of whey concentrate and isolate
Price: £25 | Buy now from 33Fuel
Key specs Serving size: 38g Protein per serving: 20g Protein type: Pea, rice and sunflower
Price: £17 for 55g | Buy now from Torq
Best For Women: Health Warrior Organic Pumpkin Seed Bars
“Pumpkin seeds are a great source of plant-based protein, essential fatty acids, and minerals like zinc, iron, and magnesium,” says King. And these nutrients are particularly important for women’s health. “Zinc plays a crucial role in hormone balance. It has anti-inflammatory properties that help ease period pain, it helps to balance excess androgen levels that are often seen in PCOS, it helps to clear the skin, plays a vital role in thyroid hormone synthesis, and helps ease the stress response. Magnesium plays a role in regulating blood sugar and insulin levels, in the production of hormones, supports the thyroid, and calms your nervous system to help ease the stress response.” Plus, as women are more prone to osteoporosis, adding magnesium-rich pumpkin seeds to your diet will help the formation and maintenance of healthy bones.
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Future Kind Vegan Protein Powder
Its often difficult to find a whey protein certified as organic, which is why we suggest Future Kind Vegan Protein a solid plant-based alternative that is organic. This vegan protein is made from pea and hemp protein, which is easier for some people to stomach compared to dairy-based whey and whey isolate. Future Kinds formula is made with organic flavors and organic stevia and is free of both dairy and sugar. It also contains a full spectrum of amino acids, and each serving delivers 20 grams of protein, three grams of fat, and four grams of carbohydrates. You can buy this powder in either Chocolate or Vanilla.
Matching A Powder To Your Needs
Here are some general guidelines, based on the outcomesyoure looking for:
The Best Vegan And Plant
Plant protein powders won’t lead to bloat like whey powders will, and they’re also less likely to include nasty artificial sweeteners. Those looking to build muscle shouldn’t shrink in fear: In a 2013 study published in Nutrition Journal, University of Tampa researchers found that rice protein was just as effective as whey in building muscle and strength among men who worked out frequently.
Eat This, Not That! Tip: Look for pea, hemp, soy, or rice powders, ideally in blends. Because many single plant-based varieties aren’t complete proteins, consuming a blended plant-protein powder will ensure you’re getting more amino acids and thus the most bang for your supplement buck.
Who Should Buy Kaged Plantein
- Customers looking for a vegan alternative to whey protein will like this products plant-based formula.
- Anyone looking for an easily digestible plant-based protein. Planteins Ingredient Optimized® Technology improves amino acid bioavailability to maximize benefits.
- People interested in trying flavors outside of the basic chocolate and vanilla. Plantein comes in three flavors Peanut Butter Cookie, Cinnamon Roll, and Banana Bread.
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The 10 Best Protein Supplements That Aren’t Powder
The hardest part of getting fit happens at home: dieting to maintain your physique, pack more flesh at the pecs, or tighten up your waistline. The struggle in the kitchen is as real as on the benchbecause of protein, the macronutrient synonymous with muscle building.The go to’s are well known: chicken breast as meals, and protein powder as supplements before, during, or after workouts. Chicken is fine, great if youre a chef. But downing bottles and bottles of protein shakes every day has likely made you glutted. You see the mounded scoop of protein and reactively shudder at its gritty, chalky texture. You feel it on your tongue at just the thought, but swallow the agony whole, because, deep down, you know you need this to meet your daily nutritional intake. You convince yourself, It’s for the lean muscles, the gains. So you bite the bullet.It doesn’t have to be this way. And because we believe you should save your energy for your actual arm curls at the gym, we’ve gathered a roll call of 10 protein powder alternatives that dont taste funky or dusty. There are options like low-carb, low-fat chips and puffs, protein-infused energy drinks that’ll pull you through any workout session, and breakfast essentials that’ll help hit your daily intake. You are what you eat, man, and these supplements will transform you.
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What Ingredients Should I Look For In A Vegan Protein Powder
From wheat to rice to pea to pumpkin protein, many plant-based protein powders are available.
Interestingly, Dr. Garden-Robinson recommends reading the nutrition label andthe ingredient statement. Remember that vegetable-based protein powders may not provide the full complement of essential amino acids unless they are blends of complementary proteins, she adds.
According to Dr. Garden-Robinson, look for a blend of plant-based ingredients listed on the label. Some plant protein sources are naturally higher in micronutrients such as vitamins and minerals.
As a plant-based protein free of dairy, soy and stevia, this chocolate-flavored protein contains all essential amino acids, too, so you can restore your muscles post-workout.
Not to mention, this brand boasts a clean ingredient profile while being an impressive source of iron.
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Is Protein Powder Bad For You
The NHS says that evidence that the long term effects of consuming too much protein can lead to an increase in the risk of osteoporosis, a condition that weakens bones and can also worsen existing kidney problems.7
For the reason, the Department of Health advises adults to stick to the recommended daily intake of protein 55.5g for men and 45g for women.
The advice in this article is for information only and should not replace medical care. Please check with your GP or healthcare professional before trying any supplements, treatments or remedies. Food supplements must not be used as a substitute for a varied and balanced diet and a healthy lifestyle.
: 6 August 2021
Optimum Nutrition Gold Standard Whey Protein: The Best Whey Protein Powder
Price: £55 | Buy now from Argos
This popular isolate whey powder packs in a chunky 24g of rapidly-absorbed protein in a 31g serving. It has a reassuring short ingredient list, and theres very little fat , sugar or carbohydrate in a serving. Optimum Nutrition also offers a large range of flavours, including, excitingly, birthday cake.
Key specs Serving size: 31g Protein per serving: 25g Protein type: Whey concentrate
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Bulk Natural Pure Whey Isolate
Best protein powder for sensitive stomachs
Reasons to avoid
Made with just whey isolate, with no whey concentrate, and sweetened only with stevia, which is a natural substance made from the leaves of the stevia plant, this is the best protein powder for anyone who suffers from a sensitive stomach.
It scores 4.5 stars on Amazon, with reviewers commenting favorably on the natural ingredients and the fact that it doesnt leave them bloated. The negative reviews mostly relate to the flavor. “The stevia is so strong it leaves a nasty tangy aftertaste”, complains one. If you dont mind the taste of stevia, you may love it, though.
A reassuringly modest list of ingredients means you can be sure whats in the powder. Its low in carbs and pretty modest on calories, too, for the amount of protein per serving.
The downside is that stevia can be rather overpowering, and this powder scores less well than some of the best protein powders for flavor. The taste is somewhat thin and its very sweet. There are only two available flavors – strawberry and chocolate.
Who Should Buy Transparent Labs Grass
- Those looking for a high-quality high-calorie protein powder to potentially aid in weight gain.
- Anyone looking for a mass gainer that includes a solid dose of fiber as this product includes eight grams.
- People looking for a transparent nutrition label and all-natural ingredients in their protein powder will appreciate this products ingredient list.
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What Are The Different Types Of Protein Powders
Protein powders can come from animal or plant sources, but both types contain at least one of the following three categories of proteinâand often, all three.
Protein Concentrates: Concentrates contain 60-80 percent protein. The remainder of the concentrate is made of fats and carbohydrates. This is the most common and easy-to-produce type of protein.
Protein Isolates: Isolates are a highly filtered type of protein that contains 90-95 percent pure protein that’s been stripped of fats, carbs, and, in the case of whey isolate, nearly all traces of lactose. For those searching for a lean and ultra-pure protein, isolates are often the way to go.
Protein Hydrolysates: To create a protein hydrolysate, manufacturers partially break down or “pre-digest” in order to make it easier to digest and absorb.
In addition to these categories, you’ll see proteins from numerous sources, including:
Whey protein: The most popular protein on the market, whey is a complete protein, meaning that all nine amino acids necessary for protein synthesis are present. The three branched-chain amino acidsâleucine, isoleucine, and valineâare found in high concentrations in whey protein. Whey protein is a fast-absorbing protein and can be digested in as little as 20 minutes for whey protein hydrolysates. This makes it ideal for post-workout recovery.
Who Should Buy Protein Powder
Protein powder is safe for most individuals and can help improve recovery, muscle building and strength gains. It is also great for individuals looking to lose weight since it can improve your metabolism and satiety.
Protein powder can come from various sources, some which may not be appropriate for all lifestyles or people. If you have an allergy to dairy, its important to avoid protein powders derived from milk.
In general, protein powders dont tend to have any serious interactions. However, if you are taking a prescription medication and are concerned, its best to speak to your doctor before taking a protein powder supplement.
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