Posted by / Tuesday, April 2, 2013 / No comments / , ,

Different Types of Protein Powder

Many of you have been asking about clean protein powders lately and are overwhelmed by all of the products on the shelves – which brand do I buy? Where can I find it? How much protein do I need? This article will provide some helpful tips as to which ingredients are to be desired from a clean protein powder.This information is based on my personal experiences and nutrition research. Like everything in my diet it is biased in the direction of finding the most natural and wholesome choice possible (although all protein powders are inherently a processed substance).


 I’ve tried several different brands and types over the years, some of which made me want to gag and others that made me feel as though I’m drinking a real cookies n’ cream milkshake.

Why should I use Protein Powder?

If you are an active adult and you are trying to build lean muscle, trim your waistline, or just live a clean and healthy lifestyle then protein powder is a convenient protein source. It is best to eat whole foods but that is not always possible.

Protein is comprised of important amino acids that are the building blocks of human growth and development. They help muscle tissue repair and recover…precisely how muscle growth occurs (hypertrophy). Not only that, protein will help you maintain healthy hair, skin, teeth, gums, and fingernails and boost your immune system. Needless to say, getting the recommended amount of protein is vital to a healthy lifestyle and proper recovery. It’s like taking your dirty car in for a wash and coming out with a nice shiny ride that is sure to turn heads!

One important thing is to treat protein powders as supplements to an already healthy diet full of lean protein, plenty of vegetables, fruit and complex carbs. You should be consuming the bulk of your protein from whole food sources like all natural chicken, turkey, lean and grass fed red meat, and eggs. Also, you should try to avoid deli meats as they are highly processed, loaded with sodium and (most brands are) laden with preservatives. With an active lifestyle, busy schedule, and limited budgets, protein powders are a necessity for most people.

How much Protein do I need?

You need at least 0.8 grams per pound and as much as 1.5 grams if you are engaging in intense exercise for more than 1 hour per day and 6-7 days per week. The FDA recommends only 50 grams per day based on a 2,000 calorie diet but that simply isn’t enough. FDA recommendations are nowhere close to what the top trainers, dietitians, and nutritionists recommend.
Types of Powders:

It is important to point out that there are several different types of protein powders on the market and they are all designed to cater to your needs. Here are some of the different types:
Whey protein – this is by far the most popular and prevalent type on the market. It is derived from milk and is absorbed by the body quicker than other protein sources (high biological value) which makes it great for morning shakes on the go or peri-workout nutrition (peri-workout means before, during, and/or after a workout).
  • Whey can be broken down into concentrate, isolate and hydrolysates (listed in order of purity). Most whey protein powders consist of concentrate, but high quality brands will include a higher amount of isolate. Hydrolysate is the purest form of whey protein and is absorbed the fastest in your bloodstream…if you have the budget, hydrolyzed powders (hydrolysates) are the optimal source for peri-workout nutrition.
Casein protein – this is also another popular protein source and is the other portion of the milk protein that is not used to make whey. Casein is the protein source you will also find in cottage cheese and greek yogurt. It is known for slow digestion, so it is very beneficial in shakes that are used as meal replacements or a bedtime shake, but it is not favorable for peri-workout nutrition. Casein will satisfy your appetite and stay with you much longer than other protein sources.
Blends - many products on the shelves use a blend, which is basically a mix of whey, casein, and egg albumen. By having the different sources combined into one powder, you get different rates of absorption and create steady flow of amino acids. Personally, I don’t use blended powders because most of them are loaded with artificial sweeteners or other unhealthy ingredients…I prefer to make my own blend with the whey and casein we have and add it to a few ounces of liquid egg whites and almond milk.
Soy – I’ve never tried any soy protein powders and would advise against using soy protein powder. If you are on a vegan diet, there are other high quality protein powders that you can use such as hemp or pea protein. Most of the soy in the US is genetically-modified and even though there is conflicting information out there, I’d steer clear of soy. The reason it’s so prevalent and used by major brands (some companies use it to enhance the protein content of their cereals and snack bars) is because it is a subsidized commodity in the US, thus it is very cheap to produce. Men should avoid soy at all costs due to the potential effects on hormones.
Brown Rice:  It is extracted from brown rice. One thing to be aware of is that brown rice protein may seem a little chalky to those not used to it but I have found it blends and cooks well. It provides a convenient source of protein for vegetarians and others that follow a restricted diet. 

If I had a bigger budget I would order Sun Warrior natural (the vanilla and chocolate have stevia). This is a raw sprouted brown rice powder that is supposed to be top of the line and comes highly recommended from many sources that I trust. It is about $45 for 2lbs online. Jay Robb also makes an excellent quality sprouted brown rice powder.  Some say that this feature makes the protein more absorbable and easily digested.

Hemp:  Hemp protein is unique. It comes from hemp seeds. Do to the makeup of hemp seeds most hemp powder is only about 50% protein (as opposed to 100% in most other good quality proteins). It is also available in up to 70% protein. Usually I would say this is a bad thing because it indicates fillers, etc. This is not the case with hemp. Due to the makeup of hemp seeds the other 50% is comprised of fiber and OMEGA-3 fatty acids, this is a good thing. This is extremely healthy fat that most diets lack enough of. This is the reason people take flaxseed, chia seed, fish oil, or are encouraged to eat fish. It also is filling. For this reason I do not recommend avoiding hemp protein even though you are getting less protein/ calorie consumed you are consuming other very beneficial ingredients. 

Pea: This is less common and more expensive. I have never tried it but have read it has a sweeter flavor and smooth texture.

The main thing to look for in a clean protein is lack of artificial sweeteners and information on the label stating that the protein is derived from cattle that has not been exposed to synthetic hormones, chemicals or medications.

Alyssa XXOO
Pin It

No comments:

Post a Comment

Morning Meltdown 100 test Group

Morning Meltdown 100 test Group
Are you ready to get into PEAK Condition? Join my MM100 test group TODAY! Click for more details.


Learn more on how you can grow your own health and fitness business from home

Beachbody is going International

Beachbody is going International

Featured Post

Registered Nurse and Busy Mom builds a business

How does a child from a broken home. A teenager that suffered from Anorexia and bulimia. A women that never was great anything + qu...

Welcome To Le Blog

Welcome To A Fit Nurse

Registered Nurse, Mom of Three, Superstar Diamond, Top 10 Elite Beachbody Coach Alyssa Schomaker, Holistic Health for the Girlboss Movement.

Contact me at

Contact Form


Email *

Message *

Follow Us

Want to learn more about health and fitness coaching?


Inspiring Looks

Popular Posts

Blog Archive