What Is The Best Pregnancy Safe Protein Powder
The protein powder that is best for your nutritional needs is going to depend on your body weight, dietary restrictions and what type of protein you need.
For example, if you have a milk protein allergy or lactose intolerance then a plant-based proteinmight be a better alternative.
These are the protein powders I have used and loved during all four of my pregnancies and postpartum.
What Happens If A Pregnant Woman Doesnt Get Enough Protein
Protein is necessary for muscle synthesis as well as synthesis of enzymes, hormones, and other bodily tissues.
Pregnancy also increases the demand of protein utilization to support the placenta and growing fetus.
Inadequate protein intake has been associated with an increased risk of a preterm birth and a low birth weight baby.
Benefits Of Taking Protein Powders During Pregnancy
- During pregnancy its not easy to get in all the proteins required for your pregnant body. Between morning sickness and aversion to certain goods like meat, eggs or fish protein powders are the best way you can make sure you have your daily protein intake
- Youre often tired when youre pregnant and cooking elaborate meals may not always be an option. Protein powders, in this case, can be your quick and easy protein fix!
Protein powders are very common amongst pregnant women. Its just that you have to be extremely careful when selecting a protein powder during pregnancy.
But dont worry, with the help of this guide to choosing the safe and best protein powder for pregnancy and along with your OBs recommendation this should be really easy for you!
Why Do Women Prefer Vegan Protein Shakes When They Are Pregnant
It is always recommended that pregnant mamas should eat whole foods, a complete meal every day for adequate proteins, fibers, healthy fats, and carbs.
Full balanced diets offer all the essential nutrients that help in proper fetus development throughout all three trimesters of pregnancy until the birth of the baby.
The full amino acid profile is one such essential building blocks for muscle growth and brain development. It is mostly obtained through animal proteins.
However, for vegan, animal protein is not an option. Even non-vegan women who do not like whey protein need to depend on organic proteins which are mostly sourced from plants or vegetables.
Plant-based proteins are absolutely ok to offer you the required macronutrients and enough calories when you are pregnant. But it misses out on certain amino acids.
That is exactly where organic protein powders work as supplementation for vegan moms to cover up those missing amino acids, omega 3, and some other key nutrients, which are otherwise found in abundance in animal proteins.
Needless to say, when it comes to eating protein powders, there is no better option than protein shakes and smoothies.
In addition, protein shakes are convenient for pregnant women and allow them to get the smaller, more frequent meals they need to help ease things like morning sickness.
With so many flavors and combinations, they are also helpful to have around when experiencing appetite changes and mood swings.
Garden Of Life Raw Organic Protein Unflavored Powder
- This easy-to-digest vegan powder excludes soy and stevia, so it is a great option. Garden of Life is a trusted brand and has a lot of quality products. This one is excellent because it has no added sugars or sweeteners. The protein comes from a variety of plant sources.
- This Garden of Life Protein powder would go great in my Peanut Butter Cauliflower Smoothie.
- Protein: 21 grams per scoop
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What Ingredients Should You Avoid In Protein Powders For Pregnancy
The lesser the preservatives, the better. Preservatives in general arent good pregnant or not!If you see ingredients like:
Most of these preservatives are generally recognized as safe by USDA but further investigation on these preservatives lead to the removal of carrageenan, in 2016, from the National Organic Standards Board.
#2 Added Sugars and Artificial Sweeteners
We already spoke about this. Added sugars in protein powders are bad! Too much sugar during pregnancy can lead to unnecessary weight gain, spike your blood sugar levels, gestational diabetes and increase in babys weight.
Now Im not saying that you shouldnt have sugar during pregnancy at all. According to the American Heart Association, women shouldnt have more than 25g of sugar per day.
Instead of taking your daily limit of sugars from protein powder, youd be happier eating a piece of chocolate or maybe a scoop of ice cream!
#3 Soy Protein isolate
I dont like this ingredient and neither should any pregnant woman!
Soy is highly controversial when it comes to nutrition because theres always some new research about soy.
During pregnancy your body needs extra minerals and unfermented soy can affect mineral absorption as its high in phytic acid. Soy also disrupts the digestion of protein so I dont understand why are there soy protein powders, honestly.
So if you see soy protein isolate on the ingredients list of the protein powder, burn it.
Can You Get Too Much Protein During Pregnancy
It is possible to consume too much protein in pregnancy. Especially if you are taking protein powder supplements on top of a varied diet.
Excess protein consumption can lead to weight gain and all of the complications associated with excess weight.
In addition, one study found that a high protein diet can increase the risk of a low birth weight baby.
Just to be on the safe side, stick to the recommended guidelines of 0.5 0.7 grams of protein, per pound of body weight.
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How Can I Make Sure The Protein Powder I’m Choosing During Pregnancy Is Safe
You can verify the safety of a protein powder by visiting the clean label project’s website and checking a specific brand’s “score”. Alternatively, ensuring the product is third-party certified by NSF can be easily done by checking the labeling of the product.
“While many protein powders are considered safe during pregnancy, you want to avoid those that have added herbs and other ingredients that may be untested in pregnancy or even potentially harmful,” according to Melissa Groves, RDN and owner of Avocado Grove Nutrition.
“Assuming you are taking a prenatal vitamin, you should make sure that you are not getting a protein powder that has a ton of added vitamins and minerals, because you shouldn’t end up taking more than what you need,” Groves says.
Pregnant women should avoid protein powders that contain:
- Herbal supplements
- Potentially harmful artificial sweeteners like Acesulfame potassium.
How Much Protein Powder Is Needed During Pregnancy
It will not be surprising to learn that mothers who fail to consume sufficient proteins end up having higher rates of pre-term births and smaller babies.
Also, the amount of protein you consume during pregnancy can affect the babys body composition, body weight, head circumference, and the long term risk of the baby developing heart disease, obesity, or diabetes.
Unfortunately, there is no clear guideline for pregnant women on the amount of protein they should consume.
However I found that the Institute of Medicine suggests that pregnant women should get 10 to 35 percent of their calories from proteins.
To get an estimate of your number of grams of protein per day, if your present weight is in pounds, divide it by 2.2 to have it in kilograms, and then multiply it by 1.5.
Have it in mind that this number will fluctuate during pregnancy because your weight changes when youre pregnant.
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Why Is Protein Powder Important In Pregnancy
- Best protein powders can help pregnant women gain body weight.
- Daily protein shake consumption is a convenient way to get the right nutrients for your baby and yourself.
- Protein shakes mix easily with water or milk, making it an easy breakfast option.
- Protein shakes can be used to replace a meal if youre not feeling well and need some nutrients.
- It includes essential branched chain amino acids your body needs but cannot produce on its own.
- Protein powder can help with morning sickness.
- Its a great option for mothers who have trouble swallowing or digesting solid, healthy foods like lean meats.
Which Protein Shakes Are Safe For Pregnant Ladies
Protein shakes that are made naturally, i.e., they do not have artificial flavours, colours, or nutrients added to them are usually safe to consume. But they should be consumed only after confirming that you are not allergic to that protein source.
There are many brands that promote well-being and use natural colours and flavours. Identifying such brands can help you meet your protein requirements, without you having to worry about its potential side effects. If you dont want to buy protein shakes from the market, you can always make at home. After all, homemade is the best! To make a protein shake at home, you can use milk, nuts, peanut butter, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, chia seeds, flax seeds, coconut and other natural ingredients.
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Alternative Sources Of Protein
If you cant really take meat protein, here are some great alternative sources of protein:
|Lentils can be added to most vegan and vegetarian recipes.|
|Quinoa||8 g||Quinoa is known to be an alternative to rice and yet provide good amounts of protein altogether. It can be used for a variety of baked and stir-fried recipes.|
Vegan Or Plant Based Protein Powders
Vegan protein is made from plant and grain sources making it a great option for both you and your baby.
One drawback of vegan or plant basked protein is that they often lack one or more essential amino acids, but its good to use if youre trying to limit animal products.
However, pea protein is a plant-based protein powder that contains all 9 essential amino acids that your body does not create on its own except for methionine which can be consumed from foods such as eggs, poultry or beef.
Rice protein is another vegan protein powder you can choose from . It is also easily digestible protein, but it is low in lysine.
A plant based protein powder may be a great option for you if you have any food sensitivities.
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Food Cravings During Pregnancy
Managing your nutritional needs during pregnancy is a daunting task for some. Getting enough of all the right kinds of stuff can feel like a full time job. And thats IF you actually feel like eating any of the stuff you are supposed to which is more than likely a big fat nope!
While pregnant, if you have survived for weeks at a time on lemonade, crackers and grilled cheese sandwiches you are most certainly not alone. Many Mamas struggle just to get their daily vitamins down. The gag is real ladies.
So Why Is It Important
In pregnancy, it is important to boost protein levels to help your baby grow. Requirements go from 45g per day to 51g . Around 4-5 servings of protein daily means you should be covered, however if you’re vegetarian or vegan you may want to have a think about where you’re getting the protein you need.
You can take protein powder when pregnant, but we always recommend checking with your doctor if you are unsure about a particular product or if you are changing your diet.
Vegans and vegetarians may choose to supplement protein in pregnancy to ensure they get enough. All of our unflavoured protein powders are suitable for pregnancy. Choosing unflavoured and protein powders with no artificial ingredients means there isnt the risk of any added ingredients or artificial nasties. Our unflavoured protein powders have no added ingredients, so youre getting 100% whole food protein!
Protein is made up of amino acids and these are the building blocks of your bodys cells and if youre pregnant, then thats your babys body too! So, its essential to consume enough protein throughout your pregnancy, especially during the second and third trimesters, when your baby is growing fast.
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How To Pick The Best Protein Powders During Pregnancy
Now that you know the benefits, risks and different types of products available, here are a few tips to help you get the most bang for your buck when choosing the best protein powder for you and your pregnancy.
How to choose the best protein powder for your pregnancy:
Fermented Organic Vegan Protein Powder +
The biggest thing about consuming protein powders during pregnancy is that you want to be sure it is made from whole foods.
Optimally, the best protein powder will also be loaded with servings of vegetables/fruit so that it can contain high levels of minerals, vitamins, and nutrients, in addition to clean protein.
Organic is one of the best options, so long as you have the means to buy organic. If you are consuming food that is devoid of pesticides and other chemicals, you are ensuring the prolonged health of you and your baby.
In addition, protein shakes that contain added sugar or sweeteners are generally not a great idea. You want to keep your blood sugar levels balanced, and you definitely want to avoid consuming chemicals.
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Vital Proteins Collagen Peptides
It has made a significant difference in my joint health, hair growth, and skin elasticity.
Collagen is the most abundant protein in the body and is found in connective tissue, bones, skin and organs.
For this reason, it can help to prevent stretch marksby improving skin elasticity and reducing inflammation.
How Much Protein Should I Have During Pregnancy
Within only a matter of weeks after conception adjustments in protein metabolism happen in order to support fetal growth and development while maintaining health and growth for the mother. Protein and amino acid increases should be gestational stage specific, the highest need for increased protein is in the third trimester.
The requirement for protein is not necessarily linear through pregnancy, it increases the as the mother gets further into gestation. The averaged requirement for increased protein ) during pregnancy is 6.0g/day, but the highest demand for more protein occurs in the third trimester of pregnancy when this increases to 10.7g/day more than the RDI of protein.
Pregnancy weight gain is distributed as one third gained in the second trimester and two thirds during the third trimester.
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What Types Of Protein Powder Are Best To Consume While Pregnant
This list is by no means all-inclusive. The number of protein powders available on the market is extensive. But I have done a lot of research to find you the cleanest protein powders with the most ingredients that can directly enhance fetal growth and development.
You are welcome to take the information you learned earlier in this post about what to avoid and what to look for in pregnancy-safe protein powder and shop for your own.
But feel free to shop right from this list and be confident that as a mom certified in nutrition and lifestyle during pregnancy, I have done the research for you and these are the best of the best protein powders for pregnancy.
Plus I will tell you exactly why each protein powder is great for pregnancy and which additional nutrients that enhance babys growth and development it contains!
This list goes far beyond including protein powders that just omit bad-for-you ingredients and include real food clean ingredients. There are tons of protein powders that include clean ingredients that are suitable for pregnancy.
Each protein powder in THIS LIST goes far beyond being suitable for pregnancy. Each of these protein shakes include additional ingredients, vitamins, and nutrients that we know are required for healthy baby growth and development!
You can be confident that the protein powders on this list are perfectly suited to help you fill in nutritional gaps and reach those super high nutritional requirements for pregnancy!
Excess Stimulants Or Vitamins
Many protein powders have added vitamins and stimulants, such as caffeine. These should be avoided as excess vitamins and caffeine consumption is not recommended during pregnancy. If youre eating a balanced diet or, like many, already take a multivitamin, it can be pointless and sometimes harmful to consume more. For pregnant women it is also recommended to keep caffeine intake to under 200mg per day so be wary of boosting that number by having it in your protein powder.
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Collagen For The Skin
Collagen is important for the skin in a number of ways. As we age or go through other major changes, our bodys natural collagen production begins to decline, which may lead to the appearance of fine lines and sagging skin. Collagen helps keep it firm, plump, hydrated and supple. When it comes to skin tissue, collagen also adds firmness and elasticity. **