Are you confused? Do you have any idea what it is, or why protein supplementation is so important?
We’re here to connect the dots for you.
Let’s dig in and learn about why you should absolutely be taking a protein supplement to make the most out of all the hard work you’re putting in at the gym. We want to cover the types of proteins out there, as well as, who should be using it and when you should be taking it.
Types of Proteins:
It’s a milk based product. Milk is made up of two separate proteins, whey and casein. Whey can either be separated from the casein in milk or as a by-product of the cheese making process.
Whey is considered the complete protein because it carries all 9 essential amino acids and it’s also water soluble. Whey is also a great way to get your Branch Chain Amino Acids (BCAAs). It’s easily made into shake form by mixing in a blender bottle, which makes it extremely convenient when at the gym or on the go. It is also a FAST digesting protein
As a complement to your training, it helps promote lean muscle mass and improve muscle protein synthesis.
According to an article by Medical News Today:
“Whey protein consumption may lead to significant decreases in body weight and body fat and significant increases in lean body mass.”
Soy protein is extracted from the soybean plant and is considered the only high quality plant based protein. Like whey, it too contains all 9 of the essential amino acids.
Some consider soy as having an unpleasant taste. It is also not easily dissolved in water.
Bodybuilding.com has an interesting article on Soy vs. Whey Proteins:
“Whey products have maintained their position as the gold standard in proteins. However, there is an alternative protein source to consider.”
Casein (case-een) is the most abundant protein in milk. It is relatively insoluble and forms structures in water which help it become more soluble.
It has a much slower rate of digestion than whey does and it results in a steady release of those amino acids into the system. It’s a slower absorber and digesting protein.
Who & When?:
When you’re a teen. Young bodies need more protein for workouts as they are growing and need more protein intake in general.
Someone who’s just starting. If you’re new and need to build muscle you should be taking a protein supplement.
For those increasing their capacity. Increasing your workout load? You may need more protein to handle the extra work load.
Those recovering from injury may need more protein in their diet to help heal.
Vegan or vegetarian? You should replace common proteins not gotten in such sources as meats, dairy or fish.
Whey should be taken as part of your immediate post workout routine as the benefits are short-lived after exercise. You should also consume a meal between 20-60 minutes after your post workout shake
Casein can be used in conjunction with whey and is actually a perfect choice for a shake an hour before bedtime because of its slow consistent release and digestion during sleep.
In closing, you should be utilizing one or more of these supplements to help maximize your gains in the gym. Who isn’t looking to promote lean muscle mass, get help in recovery or increase their capacity? If you find yourself at a plateau or if you need something to kick start your gains, absolutely look into protein supplementation. Talk to your trainer, I’m sure they recommend a particular brand that’s worked for them and others.