Written by Julie Germaine
Hello summer! July is always a wonderful time to hop on the fitness bandwagon and feed off the good energy surrounding you to get fit outside and fine tune your summer body. Taking a closer look at your diet is the right place to start, before you even think about picking up a dumbbell.
Any fitness buff will be quick to offer you this reliable tip – Be sure you eat enough protein! Sound advice. Of course, if you’re like most of us, you have a busy schedule that doesn’t allow for complicated food prep for every meal of the day, which can make it tough to consume the one gram of protein per pound of bodyweight that is recommended. This is one of the reasons that protein powder is such a popular and widely-used food product. That, and if you choose the right brand, it also tastes really yummy!
There are many different kinds of protein powder to choose from, so I wanted to help you streamline your online shopping experience with this simple, 5 question quiz that evaluates your fitness goals and pairs you with the best variety to achieve them.
My number one priority when it comes to my fitness goals right now is:
A. To build lean muscle mass quickly
B. To lose body fat and get a more defined mid-section
C. Develop optimal health
D. To avoid rebounding and maintain healthy weight
E. Improve mobility and fight signs of aging
When are you the most likely to consume your protein supplement?
A. One hour before working out
B. Late at night
C. No specific time
D. As a meal replacement
E. With breakfast
Do you have allergies or food preferences to consider?
B. Limited artificial sweeteners
C. No gluten
D. No dairy
E. No soy
Which of these is the most important factor when choosing your protein powder?
A. Fast absorption
B. Slow digesting
D. Feeling of satiety
E. Full of nutrients
Which answer best describes your diet:
A. Healthy and well-balanced
E. Protein heavy
Mostly As: muscle development and weight gain
Whey protein is inexpensive, absorbed by the body quickly and contains all essential amino acids, so it’s a complete protein. If the goal is to gain lean muscle mass, you will benefit from trusting the research that confirms whey’s positive effect on muscle development and recovery. You could opt to go with either a concentrate or an isolate. Concentrated protein powders contain slightly less protein (80%, as opposed to 90% in isolates), so you are getting in 10% more carbs and fats, which can benefit your gains if used properly. You can also look into specially formulated weight gainers.
Mostly Bs: fat loss and weight management
Casein protein digests slowly, so is ideal as a bedtime meal and will keep you feeling full for hours. It is a complete protein so your body is getting the nutrients it needs to support a healthy metabolism.
Mostly Cs: allergens are an issue
Hemp protein is a glute-free, plant-based supplement that is not a complete protein, but has the added bonus or healthy omega-3 fatty acids.
Rice protein does contain all nine essential amino acids, however it is lacking somewhat in leucine, which can be topped up by making the perfect marriage and combining with pea protein.
Mostly Ds: vegetarian or vegan
Soy protein is a complete protein ideal for vegetarians or vegans. As with whey, it comes in isolate or concentrate, the later often preferred for overall taste.
Pea protein is another good option for you. It is hypo-allergenic, rich in iron and also contains all nine essential amino acids.
Mostly Es: recovery and anti-aging
Egg white protein, Collagen, or BCCAs (soy-free) are all fantastic for muscle recovery and bursting with all the right nutrients to fight the signs of aging and keep your body feeling great!