I think the most common question I personally get asked from people who are considering starting a workout routine is, “Which protein powder is the best?” Now I will try to keep this as simple and to the point as I can, but to quote an old saying “Horses for courses”, in that it would be hard for me to give you an answer, as everyone is different with different needs. For example do you want a post-workout protein shake, do you want a meal replacement shake, perhaps a slow releasing protein shake before bed?
So for this article we will look at your basic whey (the fastest absorbing protein of all the proteins available to us, ideal for post workout) protein powders and the different types of whey we can purchase.
Whey Protein Concentrate (WPC)—Produced via ultrafiltration of whey, this refers to whey proteins that contain less than 90% protein concentration, but could be as little as 20%.The rest of the concentration is made up of lactose, minerals, and fats.
Whey Protein Isolate (WPI)—May be produced by a variety of membrane filtration techniques, with the goal of reaching more than 90% protein concentration and removal of most (if not all) lactose
Whey Protein Hydrolysates (WPH aka Peptides)—A relatively new technique in whey protein production, whey protein hydrolysates are produced via enzymatic hydrolysis of either WPCs or WPIs. Essentially, this acts as a method of “pre-digesting” the protein by separating peptide bonds so that the time for digestion and absorption of amino acids will be reduced.
I personally would go for a protein blend as these tend to be a little more inexpensive, these would be a mixture of concentrate, isolate and peptides. My personal favourite protein powders are:
“Optimum Nutrition 100% contains a blend of Micro-filtered Whey Protein Isolates, Ion Exchange Whey Protein Isolates, Ultra-filtered Whey Protein Concentrate, and Hydro-Whey Hydrolyzed Whey Peptides. This spells one of the most premium protein blends on the market. 100% Whey also contains digestive and lactose enzymes to further enhance nutrient absorption which is another key benefit to choosing Optimum Nutrition as your brand!”
“The Pharma Whey HT is a top quality protein powder by PhD Nutrition, with added Hydro whey and probiotics to help digestion. It looks like the Pharma Whey HT is now 'Future Proof'
“CNP have released Pro Peptide as a supplement designed to combine the highest quality proteins at a critical ratio. Pro Peptide has been used by our Monster Team at a vartiety of different times. Some take it before bed because of its slow release protein capability; others have taken Peptide as protein to help fight catabolism when doing morning cardio sessions. And others have used Pro Peptide as part of their post workout nutrition.”
Making the right choice is important, I have given you my advice and hopefully you are now positioned to make a better call yourself.