To assist you with your weight loss goals, we may recommend a protein supplement. Protein supplements are a great snack, easy to prepare, help manage a sweet tooth or carb craving, and are a great way to boost your daily intake of total protein. Protein shakes/supplements are full of amino acids that can help to support muscle building and maintain metabolism. In fact, whey protein is one of the easiest proteins to digest and it has all nine essential amino acids.
Whey protein is also one of the highest sources of Branch- Chain Amino Acids (BCAA) (1). Other benefits of whey protein shakes are that they are quickly absorbed and they contain a number of precursors for the body’s natural anti-oxidants (2). Protein supplements have many benefits and can be such a powerful part of your weight loss program. Most people choose protein supplements based on flavor, taste, mixability, ease, and cost.
We have listed some simple criteria that you may consider when choosing a protein supplement.
- Protein supplements are usually made from casein proteins or whey proteins. Caseins tend to be absorbed a little slower and are often used as meal replacements, whereas whey proteins are absorbed much quicker and are recommend as the post-workout protein of choice. For a great summary of the power of post-workout protein shakes, read Dr. Willey’s book ‘Better Than Steroids.’
- Once you find the protein supplement of your choice, begin searching for the place you can find ifor the cheapest price. They can be found at many retail locations or may be purchased online.
- Protein supplements come ready-mixed or in powders that you mix yourself. Depending on the kind of protein powder, some mix easier than others. If you use powders, you will want to find a good shaker cup to mix your protein shakes. In general, the protein powders are cheaper than the ready-mixed protein supplements.
- Protein supplements do not need to be the brand specified on your menus. We do not endorse or recommend a particular brand, but can make recommendations based on our favorites. You should try a few different protein shakes until you find one that tastes the best and fits your budget.
- In general, we recommend whey protein supplements that are low in carbohydrate, perhaps less than 5 grams of carb per serving. The exception to his rule is the protein shake you are using for your post-work out meal. Again, refer to Dr.Willey’s summary on post-workout supplements in ‘Better Than Steroids.’
- If you prefer to use protein bar, use this general guideline for choosing a bar that will work best for your diet plan. We recommend smaller protein bars with 3-4 grams of active carbohydrates, 10-20 grams of protein, and 3-4 grams of fat per bar.