I get a ton of questions revolving around protein powder and which one is best. I do take protein powder, but I had stopped once I became pregnant-I actually stopped all supplements-just to be on the safe side. Each and every protein out there is so different and the key is to finding the best one to suit your needs.. and your taste buds! Let's learn more about protein powders, the types, and why we need protein in our lives.
Protein powders are very popular for good reasons.
• More convenient than high-protein foods like meats, fish, eggs and dairy;
• Either fat and cholesterol-free or contain only a small fraction of the fat
• Money-savers when compared to high-protein foods like meats and fish;
• Beneficial in ways beyond merely supplying extra protein;
• Great-tasting and can be used by the whole family.
So why do we need protein?
Of the 21 amino acids coded for by the DNA of multicellular organisms, adult humans can only synthesize 12 of them. The other nine must be consumed in the diet, so we call them essential amino acids.
Some nutrients, like vitamin B12, are stored within the body and released when needed—so though we must consume a certain amount on average, we don’t have to do so every day in order to keep ourselves healthy.
Unfortunately, we have no way to store amino acids. We have a tremendous capacity to store fat in fat cells, and a very limited capacity to store glucose (as glycogen in our muscles and liver)—but we must either use amino acids to synthesize proteins, burn them for energy, convert them to glucose, or (very rarely, and if all else fails) excrete them.
Therefore, humans have a daily requirement for each one of the amino acids necessary to life, in the quantities required by whatever proteins the trillions of cells in our bodies are making (minus our ability to synthesize some of them).
So which protein type is right for me?
Whey protein is derived from milk. The protein portion of whole milk consists of 20% whey protein and 80% casein protein. Whey is by far the most popular type of protein used in protein powders. For most people, it’s the best all-around choice in terms of taste (it’s one of the best-tasting), quality (it’s the highest) and cost (it’s the most economical). Another unique benefit of whey protein, and one that is often overlooked, is that it enhances the immune system in several ways.