Steves Protein Brand Recommendations
Over the past 15 years of training, Ive tried dozens of protein powders, and I keep coming back to 2 brands that fit my style and budget:
Protein Is Essential For Weight Management
Trying to lose or maintain weight are common goals for your female clients. Protein is a crucial part of the diet for so many reasons, but especially for women trying to lose weight. Protein keeps you full and satisfied for a longer period of time than carbohydrates because they take longer to digest.
High protein amounts at breakfast can be particularly useful. It helps to minimize cravings for snacks later in the day and helps you avoid the dreaded hangry mood.
Is your client struggling to lose weight? Read this post on four big reasons weight loss can stall to help your client over the plateau.
What Is The Best Type Of Protein For Weight Loss
When it comes to weight loss, a high-protein diet can have powerful and beneficial effects.
These include lower levels of hunger hormones and cravings, increased satiety and even a greater number of calories burned .
With many options for boosting protein intake, it can be difficult to determine the best type of protein for weight loss.
This article reviews different types of protein and how they affect weight loss.
What Is Protein And Why Do We Need It
Protein is one of three primary macronutrientsthe other two being fat and carbohydrate. Macronutrients are the types of food we need in large amounts to stay alive. From an athletic standpoint, is important for muscle recovery and muscle building after hard runs and workouts, Hogan says.
While protein is indeed important for your performance as an athlete, its also necessary for other bodily functions, too. For instance, it helps keep you feeling full and aids in rebuilding all of your cells, Hogan adds.
Athletes like us need more protein than the average person due to the extra stress we put on our muscles from workouts such as long runs, speedwork, and strength training. Hogan recommends runners get anywhere between 1.3 to 2 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight per day, while non-runners are fine with around 0.8 to 1 gram of protein per kilogram of body weight per day.
In pounds, this translates to 0.6 grams of protein per pound of body weight to 1.1 grams of protein per pound of body weight per day. That would be anywhere from 88 to 165 grams total for a 150-pound person.
Its hard for your body to utilize and absorb more than 20 to 25 grams of protein at a time, Hogan says. Because of this, she advises spacing out your protein intake throughout the day with each meal or snack. The rest is gone to waste or stored as fat, she says.
How To Choose A Protein Powder
Protein powders are popular choices for fitness enthusiasts looking to build and tone muscle while improving athletic performance.
Theyre also popular among people interested in supplementing their diet due to dietary restrictions or simply adding a healthy source of protein to it.
Protein powders can also be a quick and easy way to get protein when youre pressed for time.
Protein powders are made from various protein sources. To find the protein powder thats best for you, youll need to decide which ingredients would be best for your needs.
Animal-based protein powders include:
Meanwhile, plant-based protein powders often include pea, rice, and hemp.
Some blends also include other sources of plant-based protein, such as whole grains, nuts, and seeds.
Look for protein powders that have as few ingredients as possible, ensuring to always check the labels carefully and look out for any additives, including sodium, sugars, or artificial colors and flavors.
Additionally, be sure to opt for protein powders that have undergone third-party testing whenever possible.
Athletes may also want to consider choosing a protein powder that has been tested for banned substances by organizations like Informed Sport.
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The Best Protein Powder For Weight Loss
Drinking protein shakes isn’t crucial for losing weight, but new science says it can be helpful. Here’s how.
Protein shakes were never on peoples radar, except for bodybuilders and others aiming to gain muscle. But in recent years, more of us have started consuming protein supplements, not only after workouts, but also outside the gym. In addition to helping build strength and size, protein may aid in weight loss. A new review from Purdue University found that if your goal is weight control, you may want to consume your protein shake with a meal rather than by itself in between meals.
Researchers looked at 34 randomized controlled trials in which adults consumed protein supplements with meals or between meals. They found that either protein timing increased lean mass, which helps protect your bones and maintain your metabolism. Those who had their shake with food experienced a decrease in fat mass, while the groups that consumed protein between meals gained weight.
The study authors believe that when you have a protein supplement with a meal, you may be more likely to adjust your meal to compensate for the calories in your shake. Whereas, if you have a protein supplement after the gym or as a snack, you may still eat full meals and wind up consuming more total calories for the day. If youre trying to lose weight, that, of course, will only hurt your efforts.
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The 16 Essential Minerals
In addition to the 13 essential vitamins your body needs, there are 16 essential minerals, all of which you might recognize from the periodic table. Unlike vitamins, minerals are inorganic, meaning they do not contain a carbon atom.
Macrominerals are the minerals that your body needs in relatively large amounts trace minerals are those that your body needs in small amounts. The essential macrominerals are calcium, chloride, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, sodium, and sulfur. The trace minerals your body requires are iron, zinc, iodine, chromium, copper, fluoride, molybdenum, manganese, and selenium.
Factor #: Intolerances And Sensitivities
If you have a known food intolerance or sensitivity, youll want to avoid protein powders containing those ingredients. For example, if youre intolerant to eggs and dairy, youll likely be better off with a plant-based protein powder.
If youre prone to digestive issues, more processed options, such as isolates and hydrolysates, are usually easier on the stomach.
Its also not uncommon to experience digestive upset after using a new protein powder. This can happen for a variety of reasons. Use the below checklist to get to the bottom of it.
Digging Deeper Into The Myotein Formula
Youll notice one of the very first selling points when it comes to Myotein is the Time-Released Formula thats supposed to be in here. Well thats something Ive seen makers say before too. But in many cases the ingredients just dont add up to actually being time released.
Its pretty easy to determine if a protein powder actually has a time relased formula because different proteins can be absorbed at different intervals. So with the variety of proteins in Myotein, you know youre going to get the benefits of the different proteins throughout the day.
Myotein does use a variety of proteins 6 in fact but lets look at each one and see if youre really going to get the benefits of a time-released protein formula. Heres a list of the different proteins youll get in Myotein:
Whey Protein Hydrolysate is pre-digested to help your body absorb it faster. Because it absorbs so quickly, it is a great protein for pre-workout priming and post-workout recovery.
Whey Protein Concentrate is considered one of the most efficient forms of protein available. Whey protein concentrate is a combination of amino acids and branched chain amino acids . These amino acids are the building blocks of muscle-building protein. Whey protein concentrate is also a fast and easily absorbed protein.
L-Glutamine is depleted during exercise and needs to be replenished otherwise muscles start to break down. It is one of the best proteins for maintaining muscle growth and reducing recovery time.
What Are The Different Types Of Collagen
While there are many different types of collagen, types I, II and III are the most common ones youll find in supplements. You can get these different types of collagen from healthy proteins in your diet by consuming bone-infused foods, such as eating cartilage directly off the bone, consuming bone-in fish, eating organ meats or drinking Bone Broth Collagen. An even easier way to top up your collagen levels is by taking a whole-food collagen supplement.
Below, we breakdown the different types of collagen in more detail:
How To Use Protein Powder: Your Simple Step
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:
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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.
Can Protein Be Used As A Meal Replacement
No, no, no, and no.
Protein powder should absolutely not be used as a meal replacement or as a way to reduce your total calories.
The only reason it’s safe to restrict your calories is if you are fasting for a targeted and specific set of time!
Otherwise, as a thyroid patient, you are doing more harm than good to your body when you restrict calories for a prolonged period of time.
I realize that most people do recommend that you use protein powder as a way to reduce your calories and as a meal replacement but this is not the way that thyroid patients should use protein powder.
Protein powder is best used as a dietary SUPPLEMENT which can be used to supplement whatever you are currently eating.
The bulk of your protein should be coming from real WHOLE foods.
Having said that, it can be difficult to consume enough whole foods to reach your target protein intake, especially if you run a busy life or don’t have time to make meals.
It should NOT be used by itself as a meal replacement to help you reduce your calories.
With that in mind, here are two ways that you can use your protein powder for best results:
Option #1: In a whole food smoothie with at least 20-30 grams of protein .
If you want to use your protein powder as a meal replacement then you better combine it with other real whole foods.
If you throw together a smoothie that contains almond butter, frozen fruit, and vegetables WITH your protein powder then you can safely call this a meal replacement.
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Should I Drink My Protein Shake Before Or After My Workout
Conventional wisdom tells us that we need to be consuming our protein shake IMMEDIATELY after our workout for maximum gains.
It also tells us that we need to be consuming protein every few hours for maximum protein synthesis by our muscles too.
But what does the science actually say?
According to this abstract:
In general, protein supplementation pre-AND post-workout increases physical performance, training session recovery, lean body mass, muscle hypertrophy, and strength. Specific gains, differ however based on protein type and amounts.
And in this study:
These results refute the commonly held belief that the timing of protein intake in and around a training session is critical to muscular adaptations and indicate that consuming adequate protein in combination with resistance exercise is the key factor for maximizing muscle protein accretion.
WHAT THIS MEANS: The amount of protein you consume in a day is more important than the timing of your protein when it comes to muscle building. Consuming a protein shake before OR after a workout will result in increased physical performance and muscle hypertrophy provided youre training the right way!
If you need to train and then head to work and you cant eat your protein until later in the day, do what works best for you!
Some people might hate training on an empty stomach, so consuming the protein shake before the workout is beneficial.
Not sure if youre training right?
How To Use Protein Powder
Keep in mind that protein powder should not be used to replace healthy sources of protein in your diet because high protein foods also provide other valuable nutrients like fiber, vitamins, and minerals.
Still, supplements can be an easy and convenient way to increase your protein intake, as there are many ways to use protein powder.
The simplest is to mix it with a beverage, such as water or milk, or blend it with other ingredients, such as fruits and veggies, to create a smoothie.
Protein powder can also be mixed into simple foods such as yogurt, oatmeal, or dips.
If you feel like getting creative, experiment with using protein powder as an addition or substitution to your usual recipes. For example, you can use protein powder in soups, veggie burgers, and baked goods.
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Summary: What Should You Do Now
Overall, our approach to choosing the best protein powder glosses over some of the less important considerations like the kind of whey youre using and the different brands and claims being made. This is totally intentional: protein powders are usually more similar than they are different, and there are so many on the market that you could search forever.
Protein powders arent magical muscle-building elixirs and some brands contain worrying chemicals that neednt be included at all. What we recommend is to find a simple, no-frills supplement company that aims to provide you with exactly the basics high-protein, low-sugar, and hopefully fortification with vitamins and minerals. If you can find a protein powder that does all of this with a decent price tag and compliance with good manufacturing practices, then youve found the best protein powder.
Now Sports Nutrition Soy Protein Isolate Unflavored Powder
This unflavored soy protein power offers 20 grams of protein, which is helpful for keeping you full, says Starla Garcia, RD, owner of The Healthy Shine in Houston. She recommends adding this to a smoothie with fruits and veggies blended in to increase the duration of fullness and bump up fiber.
Per serving: 90 calories, 0.5 g fat, 170 mg sodium, 0 g carbs, 0 g sugar, 20 g protein
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