Let's Talk About Protein: Part 2
In this post, lets address protein powder. There are hundreds to choose from and how do you know which one is right for you? I'll break down the 3 most popular types of protein powders.
Whey Protein - mixture of globular proteins isolated from whey, the liquid material created as a by-product of cheese production from milk. Whey is the most popular form of powdered protein and is fast-digesting.
Casein Protein - similar to whey, it's extracted from milk, but it is a slow-digesting protein with a slow release of amino acids into the blood stream, making it a very efficient in nutrient supply.
Soy Protein - a complete protein providing all of the essential amino acids and important in many vegetarian and vegan diets. Isolated from soybeans, it is made from soybean meal that has been dehulled and defatted.
Other Plant Based - typically rice and pea proteins are the most common plant based proteins and are whey and soy free, also a good vegan option. Rice protein is high in the sulfur-containing amino acids, cysteine and methionine, but low in lysine. Pea protein is low in cysteine and methionine but high in lysine, making the combination a superior amino acid profile that is comparable to dairy or egg proteins, but without the potential for allergies or intestinal issues that some users have with those proteins.
When do you need a protein supplement?
It's always best to check with a doctor or registered dietitian, but here are some instances when adding a protein supplement may be beneficial.
- When you’re growing. Adolescents needs more protein to fuel workouts because their bodies are still growing and use more protein in general.
- When you’re starting a program. If working out is new to you and you’re trying to build muscle, you’ll require more protein than you normally would.
- When you’re intensifying your workouts. If you normally work out for half an hour a few times a week, but now you’ve decide to train for a half-marathon, your body will need more protein.
- When you’re recovering from an injury. Athletes with sports injuries frequently need more protein to help them heal.
- If you’re going vegan. People who pursue a vegan or vegetarian lifestyle eliminate a number of common protein sources from their diet, including meat, chicken, and fish, and sometimes dairy and eggs as well. Vegetarians and vegans should consume 10% more protein due to the bioavability of plant based proteins.