Best Protein Powder?


One of the most popular health supplements sold on the market today are protein powders…and boy are there a lot of them. I recommend protein supplementation, such as a powder, to clients all the time for numerous reasons. They’re convenient, easily digested, and offer very high quality protein (most of them) for muscle repair and growth. They also make it much easier to hit your daily target grams of protein, especially for vegetarians (lacto-) and people who are “on the go” a lot. So what’s the best one? Well, that’s not an easily answered question and it’s one that I get all the time.

To find your right protein powder, you have to consider a few different things to narrow it down. Many times people require a couple of different types of protein powders to meet their various needs, so I’m going to go over the major considerations and some possible answers to help you choose the powder(s) that’s right for you. I’m also going to tell you my favorite picks of protein powders for my various uses/times.

Consideration 1. What are you going to use the protein powder for? (e.g. post-workout shake, meal replacement shake, pre-bed shake, are you cooking with it?, etc…)

For post-workout shakes I would recommend a high quality hydrolized whey (milk) or egg isolate powder because they’re absorbed very quickly and easily; however, most isolates have zero to minimal carbohydrates in them and carbohydrates are extremely important post-workout so you’ll have to add them in.

For meal replacement shakes it’s really going to depend on your meal plan and macro needs. For example, other than my breakfast, post-workout, and dinner meals I have about 50-60g carbs, 45-50g protein, and <10g fat in my (4) day meals. So I either use an isolate (protein only) and then have 50g carbohydrates from food, or I’ll find a whey protein blend that has close to the same ration of protein and carbohydrates (1:1) in it with minimal fat. Your macro ratios might be different, so find a powder that has a macro ratio close to your plan. Some people are on a carb restricted diet, so you’d want to find a protein blend that’s lower in carbohydrates.

For pre-bed (last meal) I always recommend a casein protein powder for a couple of reasons. Casein is a slow digesting protein powder, which is ideal for when you’re inactive and it’s high in glutamine which is great for recovery. Just be careful as some casein powders have quite a bit of carbohydrates in them which for most people is not “ideal” before bed.

For cooking I recommend using only a good old fashioned whey concentrate. Whey isolates are more hydrolized than other blends meaning they breakdown very easily and can be destroyed by direct heat. Casein powders turn into cement when you cook them, so a plain whey concentrate powder is the way to go for cooking/baking.

Consideration 2. Do you have any intolerance’s or diet restrictions? (e.g. intolerance of: lactose, soy, gluten, or a vegetarian/vegan, etc…)

– A lot of people don’t realize that most protein powders are “whey” based meaning they’re made from milk, so if you have a lactose intolerance you may want to avoid whey protein to avoid any GI discomfort/issues. Luckily, you can now get protein powders that are derived from eggs, beef, soy, and even nut/seed/grain/vegetable blends. In my opinion whey protein powders are the highest quality for muscle repair and growth; however, I know plenty of people who are either vegetarian or have a lactose intolerance who can sustain plenty of quality muscle mass on non-whey protein powders.

My Top Protein Powder Picks

1. Dymatize ISO-100 Hydrolized Whey Isolate– For post-workout and sometimes added to my oatmeal in my first meal of the day.

2. Ensure High Protein Shake– For mid-day meals (in emergencies only when I can’t ave solid food) because it has a great ratio of carbs to protein and is low in fat which fits my macros and they taste great!

3. Dymatize Elite Casein– For my pre-bed meal…slow digesting and packed with glutamine for recovery and muscle hydration. It also mixes and tastes much better than any other casein I’ve tried.

Those are my top 3 picks for protein powders and what I use them for. I only recommend you utilize protein powders for either post-workout, emergency meal replacement, or to hit your target grams of protein for the day as a supplement to food intake; however, I would try to not “rely” on protein shakes. Protein powders are a “supplement” meaning they should supplement a well-balanced diet. And remember…like most things in life you usually get what you pay for. The same goes for protein powders, so don’t buy the cheapest one you can find!

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