Losing weight is complicated and rewarding at the same time.
Yeah, we all want to be thin, yet how much will power does it take to exercise and overcome the endless sugar cravings?
Our extra pounds not only make us look unfit, but they also overload our cardiovascular system, add extra pressure to our joints, drain energy, the list goes on and on.
If only our bodies understood that accumulating fat isn’t the best choice…
Luckily enough, there is a way to get rid of those food cravings and speed up the weight loss process.
Don’t expect miracles, though.
Protein alone won’t solve anything.
Nevertheless, a properly chosen set of protein powders (more specifically female protein powders for weight loss), consumed at the right time of the day, might help you with your goals.
By the way, there are certain foods that help accelerate weight loss…check them out too!
How Protein Benefits Weight Loss
Do you struggle to overcome those endless cravings for sweets?
Or maybe the post-exercise muscle soreness doesn’t allow you to workout harder?
Protein powder is here to help you to overcome those two main issues.
Ironically, protein is highly underrated. In an interview with Shape, nutrition expert Caroline Cederquist says the average American isn’t getting enough of it.
In fact, most of the cravings for sweets are caused by lack of protein.
Our bodies try to tell us that they require more nutrients, but our brain fails to understand which specific nutrients we need.
Thus, we grab some candy instead of a protein bar or shake.
Protein shakes will also help our bodies to repair the tiny tears we cause with each workout.
This will both reduce post-workout strains and help us to build more muscle.
Muscle mass is directly related to our metabolism.
Every pound of muscle passively burns about 15 calories a day.
The Best Protein Source
You surely keep track of your calorie intake, but do you pay the same attention to your daily protein needs?
It’s recommended to consume a gram of protein per pound of body weight.
Let’s say you’ve made your calculations and discovered that your daily protein intake is below minimum.
You could either change your whole menu by adding more meat, beans and so on; or you could simply add the appropriate amount of protein powder and leave the menu almost intact.
This nutrient contains merely 4 calories per gram, when isolated from fats, contained in meat and carbs, contained in beans.
Also, you won’t bring a steak to the gym, will you?
It’s good to consume protein right after working out.
Protein shakes, made with protein powder, are by far the handiest choice.
Not to mention that protein powder is way easier to digest than meat and it gets absorbed faster.
How to choose the best protein powder for weight loss?
Here are out step-by-step recommendations.
Step 1: Plant- or Animal-Based Protein?
What kind of protein does your body needs?
Protein powders are divided into two main categories, which are defined by their source.
The two most popular animal protein sources are:
Both are dairy-based products and contain lactose.
If you’re lactose intolerant, you might still be able to consume whey protein isolate, which, as its name suggests, contains protein alone.
Plant-based protein is mostly consumed by vegans and vegetarians:
- Brown Rice
Step 2: Choose between “Hydrolyzed”, “Isolate” and Common
We’re used to the thought that price tags define quality.
“Hydrolyzed” and “Isolate” protein powders are way more expensive than the common ones.
That difference in price might lead to some confusion.
“Hydrolyzed” means that the product was broke down into peptides.
Those are the simple amino acids that compose protein.
As a result, hydrolyzed protein is digested slightly faster than its counterparts.
This feature is indeed beneficial, but it’s definitely not worth the price tag, unless digestion time is really important for you.
“Isolate” means that the product was purified.
As mentioned earlier, isolated whey protein is almost lactose-free.
If you have no issues with lactose, you can easily consume common whey or casein protein powder, or switch to plant-based ones.
Step 3: Choose One of the Six
Let’s review each of the six protein powders, mentioned above:
This is one of the most popular protein powders for women.
It contains an impressive array of vitamins and minerals, and it’s ridiculously cheap.
It also contains lactose, but as we’ve mentioned earlier, whey protein can be consumed by lactose-intolerant people as well if it comes isolated.
It takes more time to digest casein than whey.
That’s actually the only difference between the two.
Thus, casein is often used as a meal additive, rather than in post-workout shakes and smoothies.
This plant-based protein is 100% dairy- and gluten-free.
It also has no traces of saturated or Trans fats, which makes it rather a healthy choice.
Nevertheless, pea protein shouldn’t be used as the only protein supplement, since it lacks in one of the essential amino-acids, called cystine.
4. Brown Rice
Brown rice protein is often referred as the vegetarian version of whey.
This claim isn’t 100% accurate though, since brown rice protein lacks in one of the essential amino-acids, which is lysine.
Nevertheless, if you alternate between pea and brown rice protein powders, you might get great results.
Soy performs comparably to whey protein and also contains isoflavones, which are believed to help with cancer prevention.
Nevertheless, some dieticians will recommend you to use a different protein powder if you consume other soy products on a daily basis.
Cramming your body with isoflavones might lead to hormonal impairments in the long run.
This is a source of highly-digestible, 100% plant-based protein.
It contains significant amounts of Omega-3 and -6 fats.
That makes hemp protein powder healthier than most of its counterparts, yet the presence of fats also add to its caloric values.
If you really struggle to keep your calorie intake low, then you might want to avoid hemp protein powder.
Which one of the six fits you the most?
As you could notice, each of them has their pros and cons.
Please pick one or two that you believe matches your profile the best.
Step 4: Shop Products that Contain the Desired Protein Powder Type
Now, it’s time to go to the local store and pick the products, based on their ingredients.
Here are some things we’d recommend you to look for in protein powders:
- Good nutrition values. They should be high on protein and low on carbs and fats.
- Comes in small packages. It’s always better to buy the smallest pack first and check how it mixes and tastes. You’ll be consuming the product every day, thus you should pick something you can tolerate in the long run.
- Contains minimal amounts of artificial ingredients. Try to avoid products with unnecessary colorants, preservatives and so on.
- Is reasonably priced.
And that’s it!
Now you’re ready to boost your protein intake, build more muscle and burn more fat.
Good luck on your journey!