Getting in enough protein is essential for the human body. It’s recommended that at least 10-35% of your daily calories come from protein. It’s preferable, of course, to get those from real food sources like meats, fish, eggs, tofu, etc, but what about those last few grams that you can’t get? That’s where a powder comes into place… but not all powders are created equal! Keep reading to find out what the best protein powder could be for you!
Whey Concentrate + Isolate
Whey protein comes from milk and is one of the most basic protein powders. Whey concentrate is fairly inexpensive and can be found almost anywhere.
Whey isolate protein is one of the quickest absorbing proteins. Whey isolate is great for post workout, as it is quickly absorbed in order to give muscles nutrients. They are also fairly low carb most of the time.
Casein is also a protein that comes from milk, however, unlike whey, it is slowly absorbed into the body. Because of the slow digesting, it’s a great protein to take later in the day, or even before bed, because it helps to reduce muscle breakdown. In fact, it takes 5-7 hours to fully digest. Casein also contains glutamine, which is great for recovery.
Soy protein is a good source of protein for those who are vegetarian or dairy free. This is a great source of protein for pre or post workout and like casein, also contains lots of glutamine to aid in recovery!
Pea/Hemp/Rice (Plant Based)
Many plant based proteins, including pea, hemp, rice and more, are a great alternative for those who are dairy free, vegetarian, have soy sensitivities or have trouble digesting other powders. Plant based proteins are usually slower digesting, so they are not as beneficial post workout as whey. They do, however, contain many branch chain amino acids. Adding a digestive enzyme to these powders can also help speed up digestion.
The bottom line? Pick a protein that works best for you and your diet, however, try and get most of your protein from whole food sources.