Types of protein supplements

Types of protein supplements: If you flip through any Fitness magazine or ask any Fitness enthusiast, the protein supplement gets all their attention. They claim the benefits of taking protein. And it is true, Protein can help promote a healthy weight and help muscles recover quickly after a good workout. 

But what exactly is a protein supplement, types of protein supplements, which type of protein powder is best? This article deals with the different sources of protein powder available in the market and which ones stand apart from the rest.

Protein 101

Firstly, Protein is one of the three macro-nutrients and is responsible for muscle growth and repair. Muscles are made up of protein without this the extra calories you eat may turn up into fat. There are so many options available in the market, it can be difficult to determine which type of protein powder is best according to your goal.

Types of protein supplements

Here are 3 different types of protein supplements available in the market.

1. Whey Protein:

Whey Protein is the most common protein supplement available in the market today. Whey is a by-product left in the process of turning milk into cheese. This liquid whey is then processed to become a powder. Whey is quickly absorbed by the body, making it useful for post-workout recovery.

In spite of the myths, Researches have shown that Whey protein promotes lean muscle growth and fat loss, as well as supports cardiovascular health and healthy metabolism.

Types Of Protein Supplements

Whey protein is again available in 4 different forms.

  • Whey concentrate
  • Whey isolate
  • Whey Hydrolysate
  • Whey blend
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Whey concentrate:

Whey left in the process of turning milk into cheese is processed to a powder. Whey protein concentrate is the cheapest and most common form of whey protein available in the market. Whey protein concentrate contains 70 to 80 percent protein, and is made of lactose(the sugar found in milk) and fat. A 1 scoop of Whey protein concentrate contains 22 grams of protein, 1.7 grams of carbs, and 2 grams of fat approximately.

Whey protein concentrate is the best choice as it has higher levels of bioactive compounds. The sugar found in milk (lactose) is indigestible and a common allergen for some people and usually whey protein concentrate comes unflavored. If you are lactic intolerant (or) fond of flavors, you can opt for other whey protein forms.

Whey Isolate:

Whey protein concentrate is further processed with less lactose and fat to produce whey protein isolate. Whey protein isolate (simply whey isolate) contains around 90% protein. 1 scoop of whey protein isolate contains 25 grams of protein, 0.2 grams of carbs, and 0.3 grams of fat. Whey isolates digest more quickly than whey protein concentrate. Whey Isolate is costlier than whey concentrate and is available in different flavors.

Whey Hydrolysate:

Whey protein hydrolysate or simply hydrolyzed whey protein is a pre-digested form of whey protein. It dissolves much faster in water than whey concentrate and whey isolate. Whey Protein Hydrolysate is the purest and ultra form of whey protein and is made through a process called hydrolysis. In this process, the protein chains are broken down into smaller segments. 

These newly formed protein particles are very small and are easily absorbed by the body and are called peptides. It contains around 99% protein. The cost of whey hydrolysate is higher than whey concentrate and whey isolate.

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Whey blend:

Nowadays, a new kind of protein came into the market that is whey protein blend. Now, what exactly is whey blend? A protein blend is any supplement that contains more than one protein source. The combination of protein can come from the same sources or a variety of sources. For instance, it can be made of whey concentrate and whey isolate (or) whey and casein protein (or) whey protein and egg protein. 

The benefits of using a protein blend are that you will be consuming different protein sources at a time. Each kind of protein has its own amino profile, rates of digestion, and has slightly different benefits. The cost of whey protein blend lies between whey concentrate and whey isolate. Affordable to most people.

2. Casein Protein:

Casein is a by-product of milk, might be allergenic to some people, much like whey. Casein comes from the curds that remain when the cheese is made, which is then processed to become a powder. 

Whey and Casein

Casein protein powder offers similar advantages to whey protein but with a different release process. Casein Protein digests much slower compared to whey protein.

It’s not beneficial as a post-workout supplement because it digests and absorbs into the bloodstream slower than whey protein. 

One scoop of casein protein powder contains 24 grams of protein, 3 grams of carbs, and 1 gram of fat. This supplement can be used to recover muscle overnight when daily protein needs aren’t being met in meals and snacks.

3. Plant-based proteins like Soy Protein:

This type of protein is suitable for vegans. Soy protein is a great plant-based alternative to whey protein as it also contains all the essential amino acids as whey. Soy protein powders are low in fat and carbohydrates but don’t dissolve in water as easily as whey protein. Soy protein is concentrated or isolated after the soybeans have been hulled and dried into soy flour and this soy flour is also used in pancakes. 

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A scoop of soy protein contains 23 grams of protein, 2 grams of carbs, and 1 gram of fat. In recent years, soy has come under heavy scrutiny because soy crop is often genetically modified by using some chemical that is harmful to humans, to produce greater crop yields. Some researchers don’t recommend soy protein due to its effects on hormone levels. If you are a vegan, it is recommended to use soy protein from a trusted company and trusted importer.

The conclusion

There are different sources of protein powder available in the market. If you cannot fulfill the daily protein requirement from your diet, you need to supplement with protein. Protein supplements are not mandatory but they are necessary.

I hope this article(Types of protein supplements) is helpful for you.

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Mujja Saikumar, founder of The Muscly Advisor is an Aeronautical engineering graduate formed an obsession with fitness and helping people to clear all the health and fitness-related doubts through Blogs, videos, and social media. Instagram | Facebook | Twitter

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