In this article you will not just learn how you can use protein powder to lose weight, but everything you need to know about protein powders. We will cover what it is, where it comes from, which is best for you. Then we will get into how much you should use, what types of lifestyles benefit from it, and the practical reasons it's used by people who desire to lose some unwanted pounds.
Do You Even Need A Protein Powder To Lose Weight?
Absolutely not. You can manage your diet with whole foods and get the same exact results you can get with protein powder, it's just a matter of expense, time and lifestyle. We will get more into this very soon.
Ready to get started?
What You're Not Being Told About Protein Powder
It's food. Protein powder is nothing more than food!
Yes, all protein powders are indeed just food. Protein powder is in fact dried and powered real food. The protein is extracted from the food source, dried, powered and stored. It really is that simple, so you should consider your shake just another food, like a steak or a handful of peanuts. This is why they are often used as a meal replacement for many people. This is one of the primary benefits of protein powder for people looking to lose weight.
Different Types of Protein Powders
Depending on the source, protein powders have different effects on the body. Luckily, there is a variety available so you can choose the one that's right for you.
Whey Concentrate vs Whey Isolate
The primary difference between whey concentrate and whey isolate is that isolate is more refined and lacks lactose. Those who have lactose intolerant are better off using whey isolate, even though isolates lose much of the other beneficial compounds that are found in concentrates. Isolates are, however, higher in protein per serving because they are stripped of mostly everything else.
Casein is also derived from milk, but it digests and is absorbed by the body much more slowly. When it enters the stomach, it creates a gel-like substance that slows the stomach down from emptying. This results in a more gradual exposure of the muscles to the protein and the amino acids that make it up. As far as effectiveness in building muscle, casein is more effective than soy or wheat protein.
Soy protein is made from soybeans. Protein powders that are made from soy protein isolate have the highest amount of protein in them, but that doesn't mean that soy protein powder is good for you. As the protein is produced from the soybeans, one thing the manufacturing process leaves in is phytic acid: phytic acid binds with multiple nutrients and ends up resulting in deficiencies in them. These nutrients include zinc, calcium, copper, iron, and magnesium.
Soy protein powders also contain phytoestrogens (plant hormones) which can affect the natural human production of hormones in the endocrine glands. For men, this reduces testosterone. For women, this has been linked to things such as cancer, endometriosis, infertility, and low libido.
Milk Protein Isolate
Milk protein isolate is derived from milk and has almost no lactose, making it great for people who have lactose intolerance issues. It contains at least 90% total protein content with less than 3% fat. It also mixes better than other types of protein.
Egg albumin or egg white is an excellent source of protein. One scoop of powder provides 24 grams of protein, nearly 4 times the amount that you would find in a whole egg. Because it's naturally lactose-free, it's also good for people who have lactose intolerance. It's also low in carbs, with only 2 grams per scoop.
Pea protein is a complete protein, which means it has all 9 amino acids that are required for the body to function. It also contains branched-chain amino acids and these are needed if you want to build muscle. Other types of plant protein, such as rice, cannot make this claim. It's also high in the amino acid arginine, which helps build muscle at a higher rate than other plant-based proteins do.
Hemp protein is produced from the seeds of a certain variety of cannabis sativa. They have a nutrient profile that is similar to flaxseed; a single serving (about 4 tablespoons) of a quality hemp protein powder contains around 120 calories, 12 grams of protein, 3 grams of fat, and 11 grams of carbs. As another produce that is naturally lactose-free, it's great for people who have lactose intolerance issues.
Brown Rice Protein
If you want to avoid dairy and GMOs, brown rice protein is a great alternative to both whey and soy proteins. It helps increase weight loss because it contains unique peptides that help reduce weight gain. It also reduces insulin spikes, improves liver function, and help regulate cholesterol.
Protein blends are usually designed for a specific user. They may use different types of proteins from different sources to put together something for a very specific user just like Swhey. Swhey's Halo protein powder was designed for women who want to lose weight and are just getting started or are starting back into a healthier lifestyle.
What Else Is In It?
Many protein powders contain unnecessary fillers or artificial ingredients that you really don't want to eat. Some of these things include dextrin/glucose, artificial sweeteners like sucralose, splenda, aspartame, and other things like vegetable oils, thickeners like xanthan gum, or fillers like coconut flour or psyllium.
It's Just Part Of Your Diet
If you're busy and on the go all the time, this is a perfect addition to your diet. Whether you take a scoop in the morning in a shake trying to get out the door or if you just use it as a meal replacement for lunch, it's quick, it's easy, and it will keep you full until your next meal while being low carb enough to avoid weight gain. Like we said earlier, it's the equivalent of eating a small piece of chicken as far as protein.
How Much Do You Need?
People who have dug into the deeper science of it suggest 0.3 grams per pound of body weight per day for people who are sedentary. For someone who leads an active lifestyle without working out constantly (but on a regular basis), the recommendation is 0.6 grams per pound of body weight. For athletes and high intensity weight lifting and workouts such as crossfit, you need 0.9 grams per pound of body weight. It's really that simple.
Keep It Low
For women who want to lose weight, their protein powder should be low carb, low calorie, and low sugar. Anything high in any of those 3 things is an enemy to weight loss efforts.
Variety: The Spice Of Health That Maintains Quality of Life
Having variety in the sources of protein that you get is also key to success. Unless you purchase a blended type of protein powder, you'll need to keep multiple types of protein powder around the home. The vitamins and minerals in each type are different, so having a variety of both plant and dairy proteins mimics your normal diet.
We feel so strongly about variety that there is a long list of different plants that we use in our protein powder, even though it also has whey in it. You should take a look at the list of ingredients in Halo; you might be surprised by what you see.
The Perfect Addition To A Low Carb Lifestyle
As you can see, finding the best protein powders for you is really not that complicated nor is how it's used. You can plan meals around your protein shake during the day or you can use the protein as a meal replacement when you're just not up to cooking. Lots of people are actually cooking with them, though; there are many recipes online for different smoothies, shakes, brownies, pancakes, and more. This is likely due to the rise of the low carb diets over the past decade as science demonstrates more and more that high carb diets are a primary cause of weight gain and disease for the average person.