A quality protein drink made from wholefood ingredients can benefit your health in a number of ways. Adequate intake of protein in your diet can balance hormones, assist in weight loss, support detoxification and digestion, boost your immune system, and even support your nutritional needs during pregnancy and breastfeeding. Protein is also the key nutrient that helps you get ageless, glowing skin and lean, toned muscles.
The key nutrient for fat loss and body shaping is protein as it is essential to regulate the appetite, boost metabolism and encourage significant weight loss, while supporting lean muscle - but not all protein is created equal. Protein is essential because your body requires adequate amino acids for the construction of enzymes that are integral to the detoxification pathways. A quality protein drink made from whole food ingredients can benefit your health in a number of ways.
“For me, protein works effectively in regulating my appetite and stabilising my blood sugar. For weight loss it is recommended you get between 80 – 120g of protein per day to aid satiety and muscle recovery.” - Teresa Cutter
Protein is also the key nutrient that helps you get ageless glowing skin and lean toned muscles. I’ve been in the fitness and health industry since my early 20s and have tasted many kinds of protein on the market. Some made me gain weight, some constipated me for days, and some made me feel bloated. This was the main reason I decided to design my own.
It’s important you choose the right protein powder that suits your needs and that supports your health in every way. It’s important they are un-denatured and free from chemicals and additives.
Here’s what you DON’T want in a protein powder:
1. Casein + WPC
These are also known as whey protein concentrate and sodium caseinate. WPC’s and casein protein sources are high in lactose and more difficult to absorb, which can often cause bloating, flatulence, and gastrointestinal distress. It is quite ironic that these powders actually started off as a weight gainer in medical institutions!
Food sensitivities to gluten can elevate inflammation in some people and cause a range of health problems including hormonal imbalances, skin conditions, fatigue, mood swings, and headaches.
These ingredients can raise glycemic load, which may contribute to fat storage. Most are processed with GMO corn and they can also cause gastrointestinal distress in some people. They are mostly added to protein powders as fillers to bulk it out or make the protein mix easier.
4. Artificial sweeteners
Common artificial sweeteners used are Sucralose (Splenda, E955), Aspartame (NutraSweet, Equal, E951), and Saccharin (E954). Some people may experience negative reactions to artificial sweeteners and side effects may include headaches, migraines, gastric distress, depression and weight gain.
5. Skim milk powders/milk solids
Skim milk powders and milk solids are often used as a cheap bulking agent in lower quality powders.
They are high in lactose sugars, which can cause bloating, gastrointestinal distress, constipation, and loose stools.
6. Soy protein
Some soy proteins come from genetically-modified sources with high pesticide use. They contain chemical compounds which may cause hormonal disturbances in some people.
7. Vegetable oils and fats
These ingredients are often added to many weight loss and protein powders to increase richness and make them taste creamy. However, these fats are often derived from hydrogenated sources that contain trans fats, which are known to be more harmful than saturated fats. Trans fats raise levels of bad cholesterol and lower levels of good cholesterol.
8. Thickeners and gums
Thickeners and gums, including xanthan gum, are manufactured from soy or corn and can cause bloating, constipation and gas. They are little like glue in my digestive system.
Fillers are often added to bulk up the protein and save money for the manufacturer.
Some fillers include ingredients such as coconut flour, psyllium, sugar, which can cause gastric distress such as bloating, constipation and reflux in people who are susceptible to digestive issues.
10. Added fibres
Added fibres in protein powders are often included as a filler or weight management tool. For me personally, it causes gastric distress, constipation and bloating as I have a particularly sensitive digestive system. The cleaner your protein powder, the better and the best fibres are obtained from plant-based leafy greens, vegetables and fruits.