Pumpkin, hemp, soy, pea, whey, egg, chicken, beef….. The protein supplement aisle has become over crowded with options for protein sources. How do you choose?! The way we see it at OnUp, top notch nutrition is key, and we won’t sacrifice great taste to get it!
We consider whey protein the ideal protein for several reasons:
- Tastes Delicious: Have you ever tried a pea or soy protein shake at the smoothie bar or thrown some hemp protein powder in a blender bottle? Bitter, grassy, and very gritty. Some like that. Not us. Whey protein comes from fresh dairy milk and is very clean tasting and smooth when filtered out properly. As a result, whey protein goes well with not only sweet flavors like chocolate and vanilla, but also with refreshing fruity flavors like berry and pineapple.
- High Quality: Our “Why Protein?”, blog post discussed why we need protein, especially immediately after a workout. In that 30-60 minute window, we need a protein that is both high quality & complete (contains all the essential amino acids) as well as fast digesting. The most recently accepted protein quality score is the Digestible Indispensable Amino Acid Score (DIAAS). While this might sound overly technical, simply put, DIAAS measures how protein quality stacks up against what our bodies need coupled with how available it is for us to actually digest. Dairy proteins, such as whey, lead the pack by a significant margin with a score >1 while all other proteins such as soy and pea fall short of 1. What this means is that if you’re drinking soy or pea protein, you will also need to find complementary protein sources to get everything your body needs. Whey checks ALL the protein boxes on its own!
- Fastest Digesting: After exercise your body prefers fast digesting proteins. Whey protein is highly soluble, which allows it to be absorbed into the small intestine and blood stream immediately. This spikes the amino acid levels in your body leading to muscle protein synthesis.
- Increases Satiety: Research has proven that whey increases satiety so you don’t find yourself reaching for the bag of cookies an hour later. What a great benefit!
- Boosts the immune system: Have we mentioned yet that whey comes from milk? Because of this, whey protein contains nutrients beyond just protein - this offers additional benefits that plant-born proteins cannot.
It is possible to get a complete amino acid protein from plant-based protein supplements by eating a combination. Or we can eat one of a handful of complete whole foods such as egg, beef, or chicken. The shortfall of either of these solutions is that they digest more slowly than whey protein, sometimes taking several hours. Whey protein is complete and the fastest digesting protein source which is ideal to make the most of our workouts!
At OnUp, we believe whey protein stands ahead of the rest. What’s your favorite protein source?