Ok so a fair
few people have asked me recently about protein shakes, what's good and what's not. Now, like ANYthing to do with health and nutrition, its one of those confusing and controversial topics that basically you have to make your own mind up about, but here's my take on it.
What to look out for:
1) the protein (of course!) really this is personal preference. I'm not going to go into it in too much detail as there are HEAPS of other blog posts and articles eschewing the virtues of whey based proteins (the most commonly found form in shops!) Vs plant based. Personally I try to avoid consuming too much dairy so I prefer a plant based one, and if you're vegan...... Now, more protein isn't necessarily better as your body can only process so much at once, plus they all seem to have roughly the same amount per serving. I do like the Forver Lite Ultra powder is it has added 'aminotein', a fancy thing that apparently helps your body break down the protein into its useable form.
2) the sweeteners - again, personal prefernce. You can buy totally sugar free versions but they taste - well, horrible. Probably the most common are those with artificial sweeteners like stevia although you can find some with natural sugar in.
So- why bother using something that contains current public enemy number 1, SUGAR (in one form or another) when you can just eat some scrambled egg or something. For me, it's purely about CONVENIENCE! As a full time stay at home/part time working mama with ambitions to keep fit, have a tidyish house, cook healthy meals, meditate occasionally oh and, have a life, I need quick nourishment occasionally. Plus a couple of scrambled eggs would only give me around 12g protein whereas one of the Forever Lite Ultra Protein Shakes (and others) would deliver around 27g. So, it's a no brainer for me. I personally don't have one every day, unless I'm doing the Clean 9 cleanse or similar, so here's how I use mine!
1) Breakfast in a hurry - scoop of protein powder with 300mls almond milk, handful of soaked porridge oats, handful of baby spinach, half a banana and/or berries. Oh and some avocado occasionally.
2) Baking! Basically when a recipe calls for some kind of sugar I usually swap a bit for protein powder or I just add it in like with these awesome pancakes by Jamie.
3) Porridge or yogurt, for flavour and protein boost.
4) After an evening workout - because they contain protein AND carbs in the right amount, they're ideal for a post workout snack, esp. if it's late at night or just a funny time of day when you're not ready for a proper meal.
SO yeah, on the whole I prefer to JERF (just eat real food), and nuts, meat, eggs, seafood, dairy, are ALL decent sources of protein but if I'm in a hurry, have worked extra hard that day, don't have a fully stocked fridge or just can't be bothered to make something - PLUS while I'm breast feeding and I know I need that extra boost, a protein shake is perfect.......for me at least :-)
Hope that helps???
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