Using protein powder in your diet is a great way to increase your overall protein intake. If you recall from your school days, amino acids are the building blocks of protein. Different sources of protein will contain different types of amino acids in certain ratios, which determines the function they will have in the body. Whether it’s from a breakfast smoothie, or adding it into other food, such as oatmeal, protein powder is sure to give you an extra boost of protein. With ever increasing options on the shelves these days, the choices may seem overwhelming. Today we will discuss some of the different types of protein powder so you can determine which kind is best for you.
Whey Protein Powder
Whey protein powder is derived from dairy, so it’s not suitable for vegans, but is suitable for vegetarians. While G-Plans isn’t a dairy heavy meal plan, we do encourage whey protein powder because of its many benefits. Whey protein is beneficial for wound healing and muscle building. Whey protein is a superior form of protein for building muscle because it contains branched-chain amino acids (BCAAs). The three BCAAs are leucine, isoleucine, and valine, and are given this name because of their structure. Aside from their benefits for building muscle, BCAAs also decrease muscle fatigue and alleviate muscle soreness. So if you work out a lot, and especially do a lot of weight lifting during your workouts, you may consider whey protein for this reason. If you’re interested in purchasing our G-Plans whey protein, you can order it here.
Collagen Protein Powder
Collagen protein powder is a great option for those who are often off-put by the taste or texture of other protein powders. It dissolves well and is nearly tasteless. Because of its amino acid profile, collagen protein powder has benefits for joint pain, skin, and gut health. So if you have a sensitive gut, are looking for relief from arthritis, or would like to increase your skin elasticity, you may opt to choose collagen protein powder. Collagen is not vegetarian friendly, as it’s typically made from bovine (beef). However, there is also marine collagen that is pescatarian friendly. If you are interested in learning more about collagen, you can read our previous blog article all about collagen here.
Soy Protein Powder
Soy protein powder is a plant based source of complete protein. If something is a complete protein source, it means that it contains the nine essential amino acids that our body cannot produce on its own. Soy protein powder is completely vegan, and it is often a top choice for those that follow a completely plant based diet.
Egg White Protein Powder
Egg white protein powder is just what it sounds like, protein powder derived from egg whites. While it’s not suitable for vegans, it’s a great protein powder option for vegetarians, or those that don’t want to consume protein powder derived from a dairy source. Like soy, egg white protein is also a source of complete protein. Egg white protein is a very good quality protein source, as long as you don’t have any sensitivity to eggs.
Other Plant Based Protein Powders
There are a variety of other plant based protein powders that are suitable for vegans. Some contain a combination of protein sources, such as brown rice protein, pea protein, and protein derived from various seeds (hemp, pumpkin, chia, and flax to name a few). Protein powder can be derived from many sources of legumes, seeds, or grains. Some people don’t prefer the taste of pea protein powder, as it can have a bit of a chalky texture. But in formulas where pea protein is only one of the many sources of protein, it’s usually more well received in the taste department. If you are picky about the taste and texture of your protein powder, this may be something to take into consideration.
Do I Need To Buy Multiple Types of Protein Powder?
No, you only need to have one protein powder on hand when you’re following your meal plan, if you are choosing to include protein powder in your diet. Different recipes on the G-Plans app call for different types of protein powder, but you can simply do an ingredient swap when you see a protein powder showing up in the ingredients list that you don’t have. We understand that the cost of groceries can add up quickly, so as long as you have one solid protein powder that works well for your needs, that is fine. The benefit to having a couple different types would be that you would get a variety of different amino acids from them, but this is not necessary. You will still be getting a variety of amino acids elsewhere in your diet from protein containing food. If protein powder in general is not something that agrees with your body, or you’re simply not interested in including it in your diet, then you can swap in a different recipe, or swap a different protein source into a recipe that calls for it.