The Best Protein Powder
Types of Protein and Methods of Protein Processing
When it comes to post-workout supplements, not all protein is created equally. Knowing what types there are and what is the best protein for your body can help with enhancing your training results. But once you read through the types, there are also processing methods that can impact your selection, so stay focused to the end. It’s crucial to results.
So let’s get to feeding your mind so you can feed your body with the right stuff.
The Three Types of Proteins:
- Concentrates: Extracted from food using acid or enzymes and heat, they contain 60-80% protein, the rest being carbs/calories.
- Isolates: A step up from concentrates, protein isolates are subjected to an additional filtering process to remove fats and carbs. You can expect to get 90-95% protein from this type.
- Hydrolysates: Taking it up a notch, hydrolysates are created with additional heat & acid/enzyme processes. During this method, bonds between amino acids are broken so your body can absorb them more quickly. But there are drawbacks, keep reading.
Whey Protein: Concentrates
Whey is derived from milk and the most popular type of protein powder. It is better tasting, good quality, and budget-friendly. There are two types of whey protein. The most basic and widely used forms of protein is whey concentrate. It’s budget friendly but not digestion friendly. Some side effects are bloating and gas. It absorbs rapidly, feeds your body essential amino acids and is great for both pre-workout and post-workout.
When to take: Because it’s fast-acting, it is most beneficial to take as a pre-workout so your body can have the fuel needed while you are working hard.
Also called milk protein, it is a step up from whey and obviously derived from milk. It’s a little more expensive but it is more easily digested and, known as a slow protein, it breaks down over several hours so your body is supplied with muscle building blocks over long periods. This type is anti-catabolic so it stimulates protein synthesis. It keeps you feeling full and fueled. It also contains a higher glutamine composition which helps with recovery.
When to take: Most beneficial as a post-workout or intra-workout supplement to feed your body over long periods and help with recovery and rebuilding.
Whey Protein: Isolates
Stepping up on the cost ladder because of the additional filtering process, whey isolates are another form of whey protein. Whey isolate is quick absorbing with low carbs and sugars. It is usually lactose free and low or completely fat-free.
When to take: Because it is quick absorbing, taking whey isolates as a pre-workout would be more beneficial to your body so it can feast on proteins during exercise. Your body can still benefit when taken as a post-workout, due to quick absorption, your muscles can munch on proteins and begin the rebuild and recover process.
As described in our top three categories, hydrolysate is more expensive because of the additional filtering processes. It is considered a higher quality protein because it provides the highest absorption rate and easiest digestion. However; it is most commonly heat processed, which is a drawback. Keep reading to learn the processing types below.
When to take: With more protein and less digestion problems you can benefit by taking this pre-workout, post-workout or anytime during the day to enhance results.
If you’re seeking a vegetarian source, soy is your best protein alternative, and studies support its contribution to building lean mass. Isolated from the soybean, soy is chock-full of glutamine, arginine—it actually contains all nine essential amino acids. It is slower digesting than whey protein but faster than casein.
When to take: Due to its slower rate of digestion than whey but quicker delivery of amino acids, taking soy immediately post-workout provides the most benefits to your body and results.
Milk Protein Isolate
Milk protein isolates are a combination of casein and whey proteins. Like soy, it is full of amino acids and is created through the partial removal of non-essential components like lactose and minerals rendering it 90% or more protein by weight.
When to take: Because it is fast absorbing, taking it before or during workout will help reduce protein breakdown and stimulate lean muscle building.
TYPES OF PROTEIN PROCESSING
COLD PROCESSED VS. HEAT PROCESSED
Ah you made it through the list of the best protein….but wait! There’s more!
Seriously, this is some information you’re going to want to know. Not many people know about it. After this–you can go school Mikey at the gym.
Most supplement companies’ powder forms of whey protein are heat treated and acid flushed. During this process whey protein is stripped of critical nutrients. The result can be a much less effective protein contaminated with additives that are synthetic among other contaminates that are clearly counterproductive to building muscle and getting results. It is also a contributing factor to poor digestion and tolerance.
If you see on your supplement panel that your whey protein is ‘cold processed’, which is also called low temperature processed or raw processed, you’re getting a natural protein that is not heated or treated chemically. During this process, whey protein retains many or most of its amino acids, antioxidants and nutrients along with other beneficial immune system perks. It’s more expensive because it’s not the ‘shortcut’ method to saving money and reducing results. So if you have a choice, the best protein powder is one that has been cold-processed—because of your health and your results.
Get the Right Post-Workout Protein Powder for You
So there you have it–the best protein and their processing methods. Your choice of the best protein may be dependent on your taste preference, digestion process or goals.
From this list, for taste, digestion and results, we recommend a cold-processed whey protein as the best protein choice.
Fast acting, easier to digest, and chock-full of MPS stimulating amino acids, you’ll get more bang for your buck and more gains for your pain.
Now, go feed your muscles and fuel your results with BCAAs and amino acids. We got them. You need them. Go here.