What Type Of Protein Is Best? The Protein Powder Guide

The Protein Powder Guide

With seemingly endless options on the market, how do you pick a protein powder? Are they even different?

While many protein powders have similarities, you should be aware of some critical points of differentiation before purchasing.

While we'll dive into several different "types" of protein, you will see those same proteins across various brands. Each brand will have its take on protein powder, from mouth-feel, flavouring, and branding, making it a more attractive option to the right customer. Keep in mind that you may gravitate to a particular brand because of their core values, unique flavours, & more, which is 100% encouraged.

Whey Protein

Whey protein is the most popular protein supplement on the market. Our customers can often become confused between 2 distinct types - Isolate & Concentrate. We hope to paint a clear picture of the differences and considerations made when deciding which to purchase. Whey protein is the most bioavailable source of protein available, making it an excellent option for anyone trying to add more protein to their diet. 

Whey Protein Isolate

This is our most popular option at Synergy, rightfully so as there are plenty of great options on our shelves. Isolate proteins are thinner as they are refined to get rid of lactose, extra fats and carbs.

They offer quick digestion times and do not sit super heavy in the stomach. This will be our recommendation if you have any lactose sensitivity or the above features are appealing to you.

Whey Protein Concentrate

Whey protein concentrate can get a bad rap at times, but it is a very effective source of protein for many people. The difference here compared to isolate is that there is no lactose removed. They typically feature slightly higher carbohydrates and fats (only a couple, which shouldn't be a concern for most).

The benefits of concentrate are they are a little more cost-effective, and as they leave some of the fat and carbohydrate behind, some people enjoy the taste and mouth-feel more than an isolate.

Concentrates offer a slightly lower protein yield per scoop than isolates. Still, the key takeaway here is both are super viable options, and personalized factors should come into play to make the final decision.

Casein Protein

Milk is comprised of roughly 20% whey, and the rest is made up of casein. Casein is, in nature, a thicker source of protein, making it a popular choice for those looking for that thicker mouth-feel and taste, along with being a more satiating option. Casein is also a slower-digesting protein, meaning the protein synthesis stimulus is longer-lasting than its whey protein counterparts.

This makes casein an attractive option for people looking for a protein supplement before bed or if they will be without another protein feeding for longer than 4 hours.

Plant-Based Protein

Over the past several years, the market has become plentiful with plant-based protein options to help those who are following strict vegan diets or simply trying to cut down their animal-based products for ethical reasons an opportunity to benefit from supplemental protein.

Plant-based proteins are grittier due to the protein sources, typically rice, pea, pumpkin, and watermelon. But thankfully, the taste of these options is improving yearly. Most will offer around 20g of protein per scoop. We recommend these powders to any customers following a plant-based diet to ensure you are getting proper amounts of protein in their diet - An essential macronutrient for health!

Additionally, anyone with a dairy allergy can benefit from a plant-based option (always check the label to make sure).

Animal-Based Protein

To contrast the above, we also carry animal-based protein comprised of beef, chicken, & salmon. These are a friendly alternative for those who find whey protein does not agree with their digestive systems. These are lactose-free but will still contain trace amounts of dairy, so they are not suitable if there is a severe dairy allergy present. 

The Verdict

Supplementing protein powder is a great idea for any lifestyle. Protein is the most common macronutrient deficiency amongst the population.

Protein powder is nothing special - Meaning it will not pack muscle on you or do anything magical; it is simply a supplemental form of protein. It's doing the same thing as eating a chicken breast at supper.

Additionally, there is no best! As shown above, personalized factors comes into play for finding the "best" option for a given person or situation. 

Still have questions? Chat with us in our Live Chat or visit our team in-store to find a Protein Powder best suited for your goals today!