Protein Powder 101 and New “Non-Shake” Ways to Use It!

We’ve all seen the “What to eat before and after a workout” posts online. But how many of us take it seriously? Post-workout eating is the most important aspect of fitness nutrition. Protein supplies your body with amino acids, which are extremely important improving your body composition. Consuming protein after a workout helps you to reduce body fat, improve strength, build up muscle, and most importantly fuel your muscles to repair them quicker. One of the easies ways to get protein in after a workout is by using a protein powder. However, there are so many different kinds out there that you may not even know where to start. Below, there are the 6 most common types of protein powders and what each one of them does via


1.)   Whey Concentrate. Whey concentrate is one of the most basic forms of protein that you will see. Typically Whey protein is the cheapest form of protein, however when it comes to protein you get what you pay for so be sure to check the grade of protein before you buy it. Some people will find though that they have a hard time digesting the concentrates and will end up feeling a little gassy and bloated. Whey concentrate can be used both pre and post workout and can also be used as a snack in between meals. This is not a preferred source of protein to be used at night.




2.)   Casein Protein. This type of protein will slowly breakdown over the course of a few hours, so you could defiantly use this as a meal replacement as well. Casein is great for a protein to use right before you go to bed because you will stay anabolic throughout the night and will be able to utilize the protein in your body. Casein takes anywhere from 5-7 hours to fully breakdown which keeps your body absorbing and utilizing the nutrients even while you sleep. People also use casein during the day to help stay full and to keep a constant supply of protein in your body to supply the muscles with proper nutrition for hours after drinking the shake.




3.)   Whey Isolates. Isolates are very quick at absorbing proteins, however they are not the absolute quickest out there. These proteins tend to be a little more expensive, yet not the most expensive protein forms out there. Isolates are great for a low carb diet and have low sugar content. These are great for after a workout because they can be absorbed quickly therefore traveling to the muscles to build and repair them.




4.)   Hydrolysate Protein. This type of protein is one of the most expensive kinds out there; however, remember that you get what you pay for. Hydrolysate Protein is also the highest quality of protein out there and has the fastest absorption rate. This type of protein is great for a before and after a workout.




5.)   Soy Protein. This is a great type of protein for those who are looking for a vegetarian based protein. It is loaded with glutamine, which helps with recovery, arginine, which helps dilate blood vessels to allow the protein to get into the muscles quicker, and BCAA’s, which along with glutamine, helps with recovery. Soy has additional benefits, too. The isoflavones in soy provide antioxidant benefits, heart health benefits and is often used by women transitioning through menopause.This type of protein is great for before and after a workout as well as for a snack, but not typically preferred before bed.




6.)   Egg White Protein. This type of protein powder has virtually no carbohydrates and fat — making it the perfect supplement for those wanting to lose weight or are on a strict diet. Egg white protein powder doesn’t contain any milk or dairy so this is great for those who are lactose intolerant. The best time to consume egg white protein powder is in the morning when it gets digested very quickly so that protein synthesis is boosted sooner and prevents muscle protein breakdown.

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Did you know protein powder is a great baking substitute? There are so many different ways to sneak protein powder into your diet and up your protein intake, here are 6 delicious, non-shake ways to use protein powder.

1.) Protein Oatmeal. Who says oatmeal has to be all about the carbs? Add about one scoop of protein in your oatmeal with bananas or blueberries. This is a great way to up your protein intake early on in the morning.


2.) Protein Yogurt. Take 1 cup on plain Greek yogurt (make sure its plain because of the sugar content in flavored yogurt), add one scoop of vanilla protein powder and a dash of cinnamon for a tasty and filling snack.


3.) Worlds Easiest Pancake. Take 1 scoop flavored protein powder of your choice and water. Place protein powder in a bowl and add just enough water that the mixture has a consistency similar to pancake batter (it should be slightly lumpy). Pour the mixture onto a non-stick skillet on medium heat. Cook about 1 minutes on each side. These cook fast!


4.) Blueberry Protein Muffins. (click here for recipe)

Click on the link above for the recipe. These muffins are great for on the go mornings, snacks, or even to be the hit of the next party.


5.) Protein Pudding. Take 1 cup skim milk (cold), 1/2 cup vanilla protein, and  pudding mix (sugar free, any flavor.. if using a flavored protein powder, be careful of the flavor of pudding you use). Mix together skim milk, protein powder, and pudding mix. (may usea bledner if need be). Pour into a bowl. Chill in refrigerator for at least 45 minutes before serving.

6.) Last but certainly not least, protein shakes. You can add protein to any fruit smoothie, or even blend up protein powder, peanut butter, ice and water for a tasty treat.
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