Protein powders are the number one selling supplement when it comes to exercise and fitness. If you are someone who regularly exercises or even goes to the gym on rare occasion, you definitely are familiar with this stuff as most everyone seems to use it.
If you plan on using protein powders or if you do already, it is important to know what it is made up of. Not doing so can really be detrimental to not only your gains, but potentially your health as well. So how exactly do we choose the right protein supplement?
The first thing you always want to take a look at are the ingredients, just like you would in anything else you are eating. The base of your protein can make all the difference in the world, and some contain different proteins and different ratios than others.
The first thing you want to determine is whether or not you are allergic to any of these supplements, and eliminate those first. The most popular type of protein on the market is whey protein, so if you are lactose intolerant you are going to want to avoid this as it is derived from milk. The same thing can be said about casein protein powders as well.
Egg protein powders or pea protein powders are great alternatives for those who are lactose intolerant, or are allergic to milk. There are soy varieties available as well.
One thing you don’t have to worry about when choosing a protein powder is their amino acid profile. Egg protein, whey, and casein all have a full amino acid profile, containing all the essential amino acids we need. The same can even be said about pea protein and soy protein so the source in that regard doesn’t matter.
One of the most obvious difference you are going to notice between protein supplements is the price. Whey protein tends to be on the cheaper end of the scale where egg proteins and designer protein powders tend to be more money. So what is the best option out there?
One thing you have to really consider when choosing your protein powder is where it is sourced. A lot of this stuff comes from places all across the globe with completely different regulations as far as agriculture is concerned.
This means that certain products that are sourced from certain areas of the world are going to have a higher chance of contamination from things like pesticides and even heavy metals, which are extremely toxic to the body.
This is why many people choose organic protein supplement options, which are certified as coming from reputable sources. These tend to be much more expensive options, in some cases twice the price of the conventional brands, but is worth it if you use this stuff on a regular basis.
Heavy metal contamination is something you really want to keep an eye out for, as many protein powders and drinks have been seen to have elevated levels of these harmful heavy metals. Too much exposure to metals like mercury, lead and arsenic can cause serious neurological damage to the body.
Like many other things, this all comes down to dollars and cents. Whether you are concerned about your health and want to go with the organic option, or if you are someone more concerned with your budget, protein supplements are the way to go.
A serving of the conventional whey protein is going to cost less than a serving of conventionally grown beef, pork and even chicken in most cases making it worthwhile. The same thing goes for the organic whey protein, which is much less expensive than other alternative organic protein sources out there.
On average a serving of organic whey protein is going to range anywhere between $1.50-$3.00 a serving based on brand and location. That may seem a lot but when you compare it to a serving of organic beef for example which averages $7.00 a lb, it is well worth it the investment.
On top of that you have to consider the shelf life and convenience of having the protein powder ready to go whenever you feel like it, making it even more valuable. If you are someone who is concerned about how much protein they are getting in their diet, protein supplementation through powders is definitely the way to go.