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The Best Protein Powder

Protein is an essential part of our diet and the branch chain amino acids produced are necessary whatever our fitness goals. Approx 2g per kilogram of lean body mass is recommended for adults. This will provide you with the building blocks for muscle gain, if combined with a calorie surplus and the right exercise plan. It will also assist with weight loss as protein is the most filling of the macronutrients. It keeps you fuller for longer. Protein also requires the most energy to digest, absorb and store as a nutrient. 

So should I use protein powder and if so which is right for me? 

There are 3 different types of protein powder: whey, casein and blend. 

Whey is a byproduct of milk production and is a complete protein, meaning it contains all the amino acids needed to support muscle. It is absorbed rapidly into the system and for this reason is a very popular post-workout meal. 

Casein is also a byproduct of milk production and is a complete protein. It differs from whey in that it is absorbed slowly by the body giving you a sustained supply of aminos rather then a spike, an ideal pre-bedtime meal! 

Blend as the name suggests is a mix of whey and casein and this will give you the best of both worlds and more accurately replicate whole food protein sources. 

But I’m a Vegan! 

There are vegan protein powders that are made from a number of plant sources, however these are mostly incomplete sources so you may need to combine several to create a more complete protein. 

But should I use it? 

It depends on your fitness goal, if you are looking to lose weight then probably not, whole foods are far more filling than fluids so if you want to feel fuller longer stick to solids. If you are struggling to gain weight or looking to add muscle, then yes, this a quick and easy way of boosting your protein and calorie count. 

Watch out for dubious marketing though, there is very little difference between expensive and non expensive brands, so shopping around is a must. Watch out for miracle claims too, it’s just protein like any other source of protein: no more, no less.