Posted on February 28, 2020 by Josh Puttock
We are almost certain you’ll have heard people talking about protein powders, protein supplements and how many grams a day they consume. If (like us) you’ve been wondering how credible the protein shake talk is, you’ve come to the right place!
We’re going to be giving you the low down on shakes and powders before addressing that all important question, is protein powder essential?
Proteins are responsible for the growth and repair of the body’s tissues. They also play an essential role in the production of hormones, enzymes and red blood cells.
Protein Shakes can be a handy way to ensure you hit your daily targets. They’re easy to make, quick to consume and it’s certainly easier to get down after a workout in comparison to devouring a plate of steak and eggs! But, with more protein brands popping up left right and centre, it can be overwhelming finding the right product for you.
How should I consume protein powder?
You can drink it with water, mix it with milk or coconut water and blend it for a smoothie. More recently, we’ve seen people using it as an ingredient to bake with! Protein cookies? That sounds like something we can get on board with!!
When should I take protein powder?
After a workout is the most obvious time to consume a protein shake because that’s when your muscles need it most. Drinking a shake of whey protein mixed with cold water or milk within 30 minutes of finishing your training session *can* initiate recovery by flooding your bloodstream with amino acids, which are quickly transported to your muscle cells to become new muscle tissue.
Protein powder can also be taken at other times of the day for example, mid-morning or before bed time. Blend a scoop of your favourite flavour with an egg and a banana then cook in a pan to make some high-protein breakfast such as pancakes or waffles.
Plus, your handy shaker can always be used as a reusable water bottle! Good for the planet, good for your health!
Do I need a protein powder?
If you follow an exercise programme, whether it’s weights, cardio, or endurance training, you’ll need more protein than the UK government’s current recommendation of 55g per day.
Powdered protein offers a quick and easy way to increase your intake. A fast-digesting protein such as whey is especially useful after training when you might not feel like sitting down to a proper meal. Casein a slow-release protein, is a great option before bed because it drip-feeds muscle-building amino acids into your bloodstream overnight to rebuild muscle tissue as you sleep.
It’s always important to remember the clue is in the name ‘supplement’ – they are designed to fill in the nutritional gaps of a complete and varied diet. Getting most of your daily dietary protein from red meant, white meat and fish is the best way because you’ll also consume more of the essential vitamins, minerals and other nutrients vital to health.