If you’re headed to the gym, then here are 5 great protein powered snacks to take with you:
Whey Protein Powder (isolates) = 24 grams of protein (30 gram scoop)
Nothing compares to this for digestibility, ease and convenience to get your protein. Mix it with milk if you want a little more protein or blend in a smoothie to add ingredients of choice (frozen fruit for some carbs, colostrum, probiotics, maca, moringa leaf, etc.)
Chicken, Turkey or Tuna (3 ounces) = 14 (4 slices of turkey) to 22 (½ can of tuna) grams of protein
Eat in a lettuce wrap or slice of whole wheat bread for a great snack.
Milk (16 ounces) = 17 grams of protein
It’s that simple. Add a scoop of decadent cacao to it for some powerful antioxidants or mix with whey protein powder for a protein punch.
Greek Yogurt (5.3 ounce container) = 15 grams of protein
Easy and delicious. Skip any with added sugar or fruit. Instead add some berries or nuts to it for a perfect snack.
Eggs (three) = 19 grams of protein
These are a protein staple and so easy, especially hardboiled. Eat whole or sliced with a little salt and pepper.
Eating one of these easy protein snacks before you work out will give you the protein you need for muscle support and muscle building and for the sustained energy and stamina you need to get you through it. Eat another protein packed snack after your work out to help you in that immediate recovery period to rebuild the muscle broken down and restore the energy you used up and to help you feel good!
Whey protein isolates (sometimes called whey isolate or WPI) is a dietary supplement created in the process of filtering milk protein. It is actually the tansluscent liquid that you can see when the casein protein is removed to make cheese. It is basically a by-product of making cheese. This cheese making process yields 3 forms of whey: whey isolate (WPI), whey concentrate (WPC), or whey hydrolysate (WPH). However, as it is processed and purified into whey protein isolates it can lose some of its biologic activity, but the amino acid sequences do not change when this happens and the protein is denatured. If a protein is denatured during this process, it does not have any effect on its muscle-building qualities. All large proteins are broken down during digestion into smaller protein chains and individual amino acids (denatured). Whether this process occurs in the gut or in the factory doesn’t affect how they are absorbed in the body.
What is unique about whey protein isolates is that the protein content is concentrated to levels as high or higher than 90%, and yet has very little fat and lactose (about 0.5%). This is the primary difference between whey protein and its isolate form. In contrast, whey protein contains around 10-15% protein, 60-75% lactose and 1% milk fat. Whey protein isolate is popular with people who are lactose sensitive or intolerant and unable to easily digest the lactose in whey protein. Many people definitely prefer whey protein isolates for its high protein concentration, especially athletes. It’s easy to add carbohydrates to your whey protein isolate if you want them, just by mixing it in a smoothie with fruit or fruit juice.
Whey protein can be easily reconstituted for consumption by mixing it with water, juice, milk, almond or coconut milk, or another liquid. It is very popular today, especially among athletes and people on the go, because of its ability to be digested very rapidly and it is an easy and very healthy source of high quality protein.
Significant HEALTH BENEFITS of whey protein:
Muscle Growth – Whey protein isolates contain ALL the essential amino acids our bodies need every day and that our bodies alone cannot manufacture on its own. These types of essential amino acids must be obtained through our diet. Equally important is the actual quality of these amino acids. There are two important components of whey protein isolates that make these important muscle builders 1) they have branched chain amino acids which are unique because they are directly metabolized by the muscles 2) the amino acid leucine which promotes muscle growth and development.
It is very healthy to consume whey protein isolates all through your life, but especially later in life to prevent the natural degradation of muscles that occurs with age. This will also help reduce the chance of developing obesity and all of the problems associated with it.
The pure protein content of whey protein isolates is very quickly used by the body helping in the synthesis of muscle building. It gives you more strength and stamina for athletic activities and a decreased recovery time with muscle building.
Weight Loss – This is beneficial for weight loss in two ways 1) it requires more energy to digest whey protein isolates which causes the burning of more calories after a meal 2) it also aids in suppressing the appetite. Whey protein isolates contain two hormones that contribute to weight loss: cholecystokinin and glucagon-like peptide-1. Many recent studies have found that low fat diets with the highest protein content—the low-carbohydrate diets—have the best results in weight loss. Another component is its ability to help in decreasing triglycerides and total cholesterol while increasing the good cholesterol (HDL).
Immune System – Whey protein isolates increase the levels of glutathione, your body’s main water based anti-oxidant, which has the power to greatly reduce the number of free radicals in the body. These free radicals can potentially cause cellular damage to the body. It also contains immunoglobin antibodies and other molecules that are foundational for the immune system. It even initiates the growth of new healthy skin.
No supplement can replace a diet of whole, natural, unprocessed foods, but whey protein isolates are the next best thing and can be incredibly useful for people with a very busy, on-the-go lifestyle as a supplement, snack or full meal replacement to their normal diet routine. There is almost an endless list of benefits in consuming high-quality whey protein isolates every day! It is a life preserving product that we should all incorporate into our diets.
Not all proteins are created equal. There are complete proteins that contain all of the essential amino acids needed for an optimal diet and then there are incomplete or partial proteins that are lacking one or more of the essential amino acids.
Sources of complete proteins are meat, fish, milk, yogurt, cheese, poultry and eggs. A cute way to remember the source of a complete protein is that it always comes from something with two eyes (an animal, my husband said I should clarify that).
Example sources of healthy protein with the essential amino acids your body needs that it cannot produce on its own:
1 scoop of Whey Protein Powder – 17 to 19 grams of easily digested protein
1 ounce of meat or fish – 7 grams of protein
1 large egg – 6 grams of protein
A cup of milk – 8 grams of protein
½ cup of cottage cheese – 15 grams of protein
Yogurt 1 cup – 8-12 grams of protein (these vary)
An incomplete protein is missing one or more of the essential amino acids and often also is not in the correct proportions. Sources of incomplete proteins are beans, nuts, seeds and grains. By combining one or more of these with another protein that contains any of the missing essential amino acids that is lacking, will then create a complete protein. Eating a complete combination of essential amino acids in the correct proportions within the same meal accomplishes all the necessary dietary requirements, but it is sometimes not as easy to accomplish as by just eating a complete protein.
Examples of sources of complementary proteins that can be combined to create a complete protein in one meal are:
Seeds with Legumes
Seeds with Dairy
Grains with Legumes
Nuts with Legumes
Grains with Dairy
Either way you make it happen, just make sure you eat your proper protein and get all of those essential amino acids every day!