Which Protein Powder is Right for You?
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photo by W Brian Duncan

The product mentioned in this post was sent to me by Designer Whey.  All opinions are my own.

Protein powder may be one of the most confusing topics to tackle as a personal trainer.

Do I have to use a protein powder?

What is it made of?

What kind is best?

Don’t I get enough protein in what I eat?

What do I do with it?

Doesn’t it have a lot of calories?

Where do I get it?

If only we were that inquisitive about everything we eat or drink.

Consider this my protein powder primer – the basics of what, when, how and why.

Which Protein Powder is Right for You?
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First, no one has to use protein powder. When this topic came up at the last BetterU session I told them it’s a matter of convenience. Protein powder is a convenient way to supplement the diet. The Standard American Diet (SAD) is too starch heavy. We need to balance it out with more veggies and protein. If you’re on the go often, a protein powder or shake can be an easy way to get the protein you may be are missing.

Second, what kind is best all depends on your goals. The go to for me (and many others) is whey. Whey is a milk protein that is fast acting and easy to digest. After a workout, it gets to the muscles quickly to provide building blocks for the rebuilding process. Our amino acid (protein building blocks) pool is small and needs to be replenished on a regular basis. Post workout you need the tools to repair the damage done. Whey fits the bill nicely.

However, there are other kinds. For example, I occasionally use a plant based protein powder with an algae based DHA (an Omega 3 fatty acid found in the fish I don’t eat). There are various plant-based powders made from hemp, brown rice and soy if you don’t do dairy or animal products.

Soy has also been found to have great anti-oxidant properties. A 2004 study at the University of Ohio indicated that soy could be better at protecting against oxidative stress than whey. It also stays with you a bit longer than whey making it a good meal replacement shake option.  Casein is another milk based protein but it is a slow absorbing protein. Casein may not be best for a post workout shake but it’s great as part of meal replacement shake or before bed.

Which Protein Powder is Right for You?
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Designer Whey’s new Sustained Energy protein powder mixes whey, soy and casein to let you harness the benefits of these three common kinds of protein powder. The blend gives you easily digested whey and soy while keeping you feeling full longer due the casein. This makes it the perfect choice for a breakfast smoothie (keeping you fueled up till lunch), post lunchtime workout (soy for quick recovery and casein to help you avoid the mid afternoon energy slump) or an evening snack (curb hunger with protein and give your body materials to do it’s overnight repair work).

And it tastes good. The most important test of any protein powder is how it tastes with plain water. That is the easiest way to use protein powder – one scoop added to a liquid.  I can say the Chocolate Velvet Sustained Energy mixes easily in my Blender Bottle and tastes great all on it’s own. With only 100 calories a scoop it also won’t blow your daily calorie budget. Plus the 5 grams of fiber puts you well on your way to getting your recommend daily fiber intake (25 g if you’re a lady and 38 g if you’re a guy).

How else can you use Sustained Energy Protein Powder?

  • Long weekend run or bike workouts? Have some protein pancakes made with Vanilla Bean.
  • Perk up your morning oats with a scoop of Chocolate Velvet and a tablespoon of natural peanut butter.
  • Take your favorite muffin recipe and sub half the flour with either flavor for a better for you afternoon snack.
  • Ever tried protein ice cream? Try out the Basic Protein Ice Cream recipe from FitBottomedGirls and add your favorite toppings for a cool summer treat.

Want to try out Sustained Energy Protein powder in your favorite snack or meal? There are two ways to enter!

Entry #1

Comment on this post with your most creative way to cook with protein powder to be entered into a drawing for your choice of Vanilla Bean or Chocolate Bean. Want another entry?

Entry #2

Follow Me @ThriveFit on Twitter and retweet this post with the hash tag #designerwhey and tag me @ThriveFit.

Comment or tweet by Friday June 28 10 pm CT to be entered. The winner will be chosen at random. Sorry only open to US residents. I can’t wait to see your creative protein cooking ideas! Good luck!

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