There are virtually countless forms and brands of protein powders out there. This is because protein is one of the most important nutrients that you simply cannot do without. Protein supplements have benefits for both physically active and sedentary people. In this post, we shall look at the benefits of using natural protein powders and what to look for in a product.
What Protein Powders Are Used For
As mentioned, protein supplements are useful to both physically active and sedentary people. This is not only because protein is an important macronutrient, but also because of the benefits supplements may offer. These benefits include:
- Weight loss: Protein may promote lean tissue growth, which in turn helps burn more calories and fat. Protein supplements can help curb appetite, which may result in fat loss.
- Weight gain: There are people who find it hard to gain weight. And no, this is not necessarily a good problem to have. What is desired is a healthy body weight not just less weight. In bodybuilding, those known as “hard gainers” may also benefit from supplementing their protein intake.
- Enhanced muscle size and strength: More muscle not only gives you more strength but also esthetic appeal. And this goes for females also, as you can be muscular without being masculine.
Different Forms Of Protein: Which Is Best?
Protein supplements come in various different forms. These include:
This is by no means a full list of protein powders but a small one from an ever-growing litany. The most popular form, of course is whey although many experts now say it is overrated. Casein is growing popularity and may be second soon if it is not already. Casein and whey are both milk-based.
Powders are the most way of supplementing one’s protein intake. This is because all you need is water or other beverage and cup and spoon or shaker bottle to make a healthy and quick “meal”. For better mixing, a blender or mixer a blender or mixer is recommended. As blenders continue to get smaller, more efficient and easy to carry around, whipping up a delicious protein shake from virtually anywhere is now a cinch. We shall look at which one is best shortly.
Why You Want Natural and Why the Word Can Be Misleading
Due to labeling loopholes, some manufacturers may claim their product to be natural simply on basis of containing natural ingredients. Yes, milk may be natural but it may contain compounds that are not.
Non-organic milk may contain traces growth hormones such as rBGH or rBST (recombinant bovine growth hormone and recombinant bovine somatotropin respectively) that cows get treated with to enhance milk production. These hormones have been linked to cancer, especially breast cancer. And this is not all.
Cows that get treated with these hormones also tend to be susceptible to adder infections, known as mastitis. Because of this, the cows are treated with antibiotics, the residue of which has been found in milk and beef. This could lead to unintentional ingestion of antibiotics through milk or milk products. Not only that but, it could also lead to growth of drug-resistant bacteria.
Soy protein does not fair better either. Soybeans grown in the US are genetically modified to withstand high doses of pesticides, particularly one known as Roundup, that have been linked to autism, Parkinson’s, cancer and other health issues.
None of the other protein supplements forms, such as egg or rice is free of potentially harmful synthetic compounds. If it is grown by or via humans for profit, the ugly side will inevitably show up.
So, What Makes a Good Natural Protein Powder?
How do you ensure that you are getting the real natural protein powder, without the potentially harmful synthetic compounds?
When it comes to milk-based protein, you want your product of choice to be sourced from grass-fed cows that free of hormones and antibiotics. Organic and natural protein is what you should be looking for. Also, look for a product that says Certified rBST Free or rBGH Free on the label.
For soy protein, look for a product that is sourced from organic soy beans.
You should also steer clear of artificial colorings and flavors. You do want flavor and a good one at that, or you will find yourself making all manner of excuses not to take the product. Look for a product that is flavored with natural low or no calorie sweeteners such as stevia.
Likewise, it helps if your product of choice looks appetizing. There is really no point in coloring a pill, but a shake should look like a shake. However, you don’t want food coloring made from bugs! Yet, since bugs are natural, the maker state that the product contains “natural color” and get away with it.
Also, contrary to popular belief, it is not just about whey protein. Many expects now agree that a blend of high quality, slow and fast acting proteins is the best way to go. And while it is okay for vegans to use soy protein, they may be missing on certain amino acids.
It may be a challenge to find an organic and natural protein powder with all the right ingredients, high quality protein forms and an awesome taste. But we have found one that we believe does. Click here to check it out now.