Protein powders are supplemental powders that help to build muscles, they help with weight loss goals. As we age, we do not consume as much protein as we once did. This supplemental protein powder is a big help with maintaining a healthy set of goals, maintaining proper nutrition and consuming enough of the daily nutrition requirements.
In order to choose the best protein powders, we looked at a list of requirements that we wanted in a Protein powder we would want. We looked for many things.
- Third party testing
- Nutritional values and standards
- Brand quality
- Quality Ingredients
- Added benefits
There are so many different brands on the market it is difficult to know which ones to focus on. We also had to consider that some of these protein powders are marketed towards men only, some women only. Some of them did not matter.
We also had to consider whether we were looking at animal based products or plant based. The choices were tough.
Today, many consumers utilize the protein powders because they are convenient. Have great nutritional values and can be taken on the run. Rather than skipping a meal, people whip up a protein drink. With these drinks, they can also add fruit or greens into the drink.
At one time, these protein powders were considered a fad, some new drink just for athletes or body builders.
While it does depend greatly on your lifestyle, your training goals, your activity levels, your athletic needs these drinks can certainly assist in achieving those goals. When used as just a meal, that may not be as healthy as you would think. For enhancing your performance during a workout, these are an excellent addition to the routine.
However, they can also contribute to higher levels of heavy metals. Another negative side from consuming too much protein could be the development of kidney stones.
As some of the Olympic athletes and others have learned, there may be some ingredients in protein powders that are considered banned substances. As always, it is best to consult with your Medical Physician, Registered Dietician or another professional in the field of medicine that can answer the questions you have.
Earlier when we mentioned there is a purpose, Protein drinks can not be relied on as the sole source of all required nutrients for your daily diet. Even eating three or more healthy meals a day along with the protein powder supplements is not going to gain the muscles you are looking for, or lose the weight you want.
Exercise is what is needed also. The protein powders give a tad more energy that will help you work out and stick to the work out routine. If you work with a trainer, or even a weight lifting coordinator, they can help determine the precise routine you should participate in to make the advancements you want.
What to Look For
When you are researching which protein powder would be best for your purposes, we have made a suggestion list to help you decide.
- The first ingredient should always be the protein source. Is it animal based or plant based protein?
- What is the sugar content? You do not want a protein powder that contains 2 grams or more of sugar per serving. The same goes for additional ingredients and additives or preservatives.
- Avoid the protein powders that have added carbohydrates. You can add these yourself in the form of fruit, natural honey or milk.
- If it is the additional protein that you are searching for, look for one that has at least 20 grams of protein per serving.
- Look for an honest and upfront brand. These will be the ones that show the amino acid profile right on the label, and a high leucine content.
- Check the brand website some of the information may be listed there also. Such as the source of the protein. If they voluntarily list where they source the whey protein from, that is a sign of good quality.
- Look for the NSF certified symbol or Informed Choice. This will prove there has been third party testing completed. These two companies, NSF and Informed Choice both test for banned substances; they ensure that only the ingredients listed on the label are truly in the product.
Basic Decision Made
When you have come to a conclusion as to which type of protein powder you want, you have checked the ingredients, verified it is third party tested, compare your list with ours so that you can minimize the amount of choices you have.
Our Top Eight Choices
- Orgain Organic Plant Based Protein + Superfoods Powder for Women This protein powder has a healthy amount of protein, added fiber and is one of the best plant based protein powders. The price is mid-range, which is good for the quality. This protein powder does have an excellent nutritional list, with over 50 herbs, vegetables and fruits. This powder is also high in iron, vegan, and gluten free.
- Naked Whey Grass-fed Protein Powder This is another relatively good priced product. It has a variety of flavors available, such as chocolate, vanilla and strawberry. This powder per serving, has 25 grams of protein, 2 grams of sugar, and 3 grams of carbs per serving. There are no added sweeteners, additives or artificial growth hormones. Naked Whey is also gluten free and third party tested.
- Anthony’s Pea Protein is a low cost product for the amount you get. It is unflavored, has only 8 grams of protein per serving, and less than 1 gram of carbohydrates. This is a great protein powder for vegans, are lactose intolerant or have food allergies to soy, nuts or dairy.
- KOS Organic Plant Based Protein Powder is highly rated for many reasons. One of those is that they have great flavor. Each serving has 20 grams of protein, the protein comes from pumpkin seed, pea, flaxseed, quinoa and chia seeds. This protein Powder comes in a wide variety of great tasting flavors. This Protein powder also includes digestive enzymes that help with nutrient absorption.
- Natural Force Organic Whey Protein Powder contains 20 grams of protein in one serving. It does seem to be on the expensive side, however, you only use 1 scoop of powder versus two in the majority of other Protein powders. This is certified organic, paleo friendly, perfect for those with dietary restrictions, is keto friendly and has no genetically modified ingredients. This is a whey protein, which is a milk based protein from grass fed cows.
- Vega Sport Premium Protein Powder is a great protein powder for use after your workout. The protein is sourced from alfalfa, pumpkin seeds, peas and sunflower seeds. A little higher in cost, however, again, it is very high in protein, 30 grams per serving, which helps your body to recover quicker. Again, a protein powder that only uses one scoop per serving. This can come to double the amount as many other powders that require two scoops per serving.
- Garden of Life Sport Organic Plant Based Protein Powder contains what is truly almost a garden variety of protein sources. These include cranberry,sprouted lentil, sprouted garbanzo, sprouted navy bean and also peas. This does require two scoops per serving, boasts protein in the amount of 30 grams per serving and is on the higher end of cost. This is also third party certified and tested by Informed Choice.
- Aloha Organic Based Protein Powder comes in two great flavors, and is on the budget side of affordability. It is strictly plant based protein from hemp seed, brown rice, peas and pumpkin. There are 18 grams of protein per serving. Aloha Organic Based Protein Powder is focused towards women who can use the extra nutrition and enjoy smoothies. There are also 5 grams of fiber which help maintain the blood sugar levels.
In summary, there are so many different brands of protein powders, which then subdivide into plant based protein or whey based protein. The best advice to be given is to speak with trusted individuals who are trained to know fitness. Also speak with your Medical Physician in regards to exercise and supplements.
The final choice will ultimately be yours, based on budget, purpose and required needs. Do not just grab and run with any, because they are all the same. Not all Protein powders are created equal. Many will also be deceptive with their labelling, and misleading as far as certifications and testing.
Please be sure that you are using protein for the right reasons. Be sure to follow all medical advice given by proper Medical Professionals and trained individuals. Protein Powders are meant to be a supplement to a healthy diet, the protein powder will help pre workout preparations and also post workout routines.
Do not rely strictly on protein powder drinks as a meal source. Your body needs more than just protein drinks. Be wise and be healthy, be smart for a longer, healthier life