Protein shakes are best known for being used by body builders and athletes as a way to increase muscle mass. But they have been making their way into the mainstream as a way for regular people to more accurately control their nutritional intake and live healthier lives. Protein shakes are not just for the weight lifters anymore, nor should they be.
Protein helps to curb hunger cravings for a longer period of time than fats or carbohydrates. Ever notice that you feel full for longer after eating a high protein meal, whereas you may get hungrier more quickly after eating a meal devoid of meats or other proteins? You will notice that after having a protein shake, your hunger pains will remain satiated for a long period.
Because of this, protein shakes can a play a role in maintaining a proper weight as well. Try substituting a protein shake for the animal meats in your diet. You can effectively eliminate the unhealthy, saturated animal fats that come with meat as well. Try to get your healthy fat intake from natural oils such as olive oil and canola oil.
Whey or soy protein shakes?
The two most popular types of protein powders for shakes are soy and whey. The major difference is that soy protein comes from plant extract (soy bean) and whey comes from cows milk. Both have essentially the same amino acids, but whey covers the full spectrum of amino acids whereas soy does not. Only animal proteins have the full spectrum of amino acids, although the health benefits of this advantage are debated.
Both whey protein and soy protein will give you largely the same results. It often comes down to a matter of taste and personal preference. Many people find that they prefer the taste of soy protein shakes better, and there are also ecological benefits to soy as well because it is vegetarian. On the other hand, soy protein costs slightly more.
How to incorporate protein shakes in to your diet
A protein shake tastes fine all by itself, but many people choose to spice them up a little by adding some extra ingredients. Fresh fruit is always popular, as it adds flavor and nutritional value to your shake. You can also throw some yogurt in to the blender as well. Experiment with spices such as vanilla extract and cinnamon for a little extra zing.
Many people find that just before or after a work out is a great time for a protein shake. The added protein comes in handy while you are exercising and can increase your endurance. The additional calories will keep your body loaded with fuel and keep the hunger away. It will also aid your muscles to repair and rebuild themselves with greater efficiency.
But a protein shake can be enjoyed at any time of day. They are great for first thing in the morning to kick start your day. Try to incorporate them in to your daily diet regimen for a boost in your health.