Top 2 Best Protein Powders & What To Look For When Shopping For Supplements
Which Protein Powder Is The Best One To Get?
It can be confusing selecting protein powders for yourself. In fact, this is still one of the most common questions we get. You don’t want to break the bank trying tons of new brands, types, etc… but we also know you want something that tastes good too.
So how do you know which protein powder is for you? Keep reading to get answers to the popular question, “What protein powder should I use?”
When choosing a protein powder, look for ones with the least amount of confusing ingredients.
We personally use a few different protein supplements depending on our training volume (how hard we are working out) and how much convenience/flexibility we need in our daily routine.
Usually we stick to plant-based proteins or whey protein, but in the past we’ve also used casein, egg, hemp, rice and other blended proteins.
Watch the short video below to get our Top 2 Best Protein Powder recommendations (one dairy-based, one plant-based for vegans/vegetarians) and keep reading below to learn the key points you need to know about the different types of protein when selecting one that’s right for you.
Types of Proteins
Whey protein is a high quality, fast absorbing protein derived from milk. It is typically digested very quickly and can help aid muscle repair after a workout. It’s a great option for breakfast, after a workout, before bed or any time you need a little extra protein to keep you feeling full as the day goes on. Typically we I suggest mixing a scoop of it into a Skinny Smoothie, in plain with almond milk or thoroughly mixed into a glass of water.
Using whey protein as a dietary supplement can be useful in giving your muscles the right macronutrients it needs to create an anabolic environment (anabolic meaning “muscle growth,” which is how your body fat percentage will start to go down as you tone up).
Click here for 10 Post Workout Meal Ideas and a handy infographic you can use to help you figure out the appropriate macro portions for your post-workout meal. Overall whey is a great choice because it helps you to stave off junk food cravings. However, it’s not always ideal for baking as it tends to dry out when heated.
Egg and Casein
Both of these are slower digesting proteins, but egg white protein is a great option to use while cooking and baking because it doesn’t dry out as much as the others. Both egg and casein protein can be consumed any time of the day, but some argue that these slower-digesting proteins are best before bed to help aid your body and muscles in repair while you sleep. Sounds good to us!
Egg and casein are often combined with whey protein into what are called ‘blend’ proteins. These proteins are awesome for baking usually, since they don’t dry out as much but still have a rich, whey-infused flavor. Blended products combine both fast and slow digesting proteins so you get more of a ‘time release’ effect throughout the day. This would make it a good option to add to breakfasts, daytime snacks and healthy lunches or to be used as a meal replacement.
Plant-based proteins are made from strictly plant sources rather than dairy sources. That makes these proteins great for:
- Those who follow a mostly or strictly Plant-Based Diet
- People with food intolerances (i.e. lactose intolerant, etc.)
- People with food allergies or other dairy sensitivities (i.e. acne, bloating, fatigue, etc.)
If you find yourself in the list above, great news! There are plenty of plant-based proteins out there for you too. Yay! Some of your plant-based protein options include soy, bean, rice, and hemp proteins. The only downside? They don’t usually taste as great. You can add it to almond milk or in a Skinny Smoothie to help with the taste.
The main thing when shopping for protein powder is to always look for those with the most natural ingredients and the least amount of artificial ingredients.
Some other things to look for when shopping for protein powder:
- Does it have any ingredients you don’t recognize and can’t even come close to pronouncing?
- Does it use artificial sweetener (sucralose, aspartame, dextrose, etc)?
- Where does the protein come from? Is it from a sustainable source (i.e. grass fed, organic, plant-based)?
- If it’s from an animal source, are the animals treated with hormones (i.e. rBST, rBGH)?
If any of the answers to the questions above are yes, you should probably keep looking. Again, if you’re gluten intolerant, dairy intolerant, vegan, etc. always look for protein powders that fit your dietary needs.
The two brands we recommend are listed below. We’ve also provided some quick links below for you so you can purchase directly through the affiliate link if you’d like to help support Super Sister Fitness. 🙂
IsaPro Whey Protein
Features: gluten free, vegetarian, no fake sugars, hormone free, sweetened with stevia
Stats (per serving)
Fat: 1 g
Carbs: 2 g
Fiber: 0 g
Protein: 18 g
Why we recommend it: If you tolerate dairy well, whey is an excellent choice for protein powder, especially when you consume it post-workout. IsaPro is a high quality, completely natural whey protein that is made from cows not treated with growth hormones or antibiotics.
More and more studies reveal the important role protein plays in satiety, as well as muscle growth and maintenance — all things that contribute to a healthier, faster metabolism and easier fat loss.
Studies have shown that individuals who add leucine-rich protein (like whey protein) to help refuel after an exercise session typically have more lean muscle tissue and, therefore, an easier time losing body fat.
IsaPro whey is high in BCAAs (branched chain amino acids) from cows that are pasture-fed on small New Zealand farms. These cows are milked according to season, and not treated with hormones or antibiotics. In fact, New Zealand standards exceed USDA organic regulations!
Made utilizing a low-heat process, this whey protein maintains its undenatured state, providing a protein powder that is as clean as possible.
BCAAs are essential to get from your diet because they cannot be made by your body.
BCAAs are metabolized in muscle tissue rather than in the liver for faster utilization. They are proven to increase strength, endurance and muscle synthesis, enhance recovery, reduce muscle soreness & inflammation, and improve energy and mood.
One of the biggest reasons we recommend this protein powder is that the protein is from cows that are NOT treated with the growth hormone rBGH and rBST. This is important to note, because most protein powder companies source their protein from third parties that do not ensure that no growth hormones were used.
In addition, IsaPro contains an exclusive, proprietary blend delivering over 70 minerals and trace minerals to help support your body’s overall health.
Garden of Life Raw
Features: vegan, made from sprouted grains, non-GMO, all natural
Stats (per serving)
Fat: 0 g
Carbs: 4 g
Fiber: 3 g
Protein: 17 g
Why we recommend this: This is a great organic, non-GMO protein powder as well as a great option for anyone who is vegan, gluten or dairy intolerant.
This protein is one of the best tasting options out there due to it’s unique blend of raw sprouted protein from brown rice, amaranth, quinoa, millet, buckwheat, garbanzo beans, lentils, adzuki, flax, as well as sunflower, pumpkin, chia and sesame seed sprouts.
Even if you aren’t vegan, this protein powder is formulated for absorbability — meaning your body will get all the high quality nutrients it needs.
The problem with regular grains is that you can’t actually digest them very well due to a coating of phytic acid on the bran. This acid binds with important minerals in your gut and strips them away as it passes through your digestive system. Soaking, sprouting and fermenting is a way to “pre-digest” grains to prevent this from happening.
That’s why we love this protein powder! You’ll get the maximum benefits from this raw sprouted blend of plant-based ingredients. Our favorite flavors are Chocolate and Vanilla.
Smoothies While Traveling
While we’re on the subject of protein powder and their portability/convenience, it’s important to always have good travel-ready food options available to you so you can stay healthy, energized and fit while on-the-go.
Whenever traveling, we always take a superfood green powder with us to ensure we’re still getting lots of healthy nutrients daily, even if we can’t always find healthy food on the road.
The superfood green powder we use is called Greens! and it comes in convenient travel size packets you can take with you anywhere. Even if we’re at home, we sometimes still throw a packet into our fruit smoothies for an added nutrient boost.
If you have a hard time with green powders, we also love this plant-based meal replacement shake. If you’re ever traveling or unable to cook healthy food for whatever reason, this meal replacement can be quickly and easily mixed with water or almond milk, if not tossed into one of your fruit smoothies.
Hopefully this helped to clear the air on the protein confusion. Still got a question?
Ask us in the comments below!
Your dedicated trainers,
Liz & Sara
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