The Truth about Protein Supplements-Are they for you?

Protein supplements are a lifestyle choice with added nutritional benefits.

So you are at the gym working your ass off  at the new fitness regime your trainer has charted out for you along with a controlled diet chart to compliment the weight loss process.  You may have overheard people talking at the gym about protein shakes that they have after they work out and how it is awesome. Powders, bars and other supplements have become so ingrained in the gymming culture these days that it’s hard to imagine not following up a great workout with a shake of some sort. That’s when you are left wondering if protein supplements is something you would like to try out or is it only for body builders who are trying to beef up, are you missing out on something?

Now women quite often lack adequate protein in their diets, even when it comes to cheat meals, a women would rather dig into sweet temptations unlike guys who want to sink their teeth into that meaty delight. A lack of protein can be problematic for anyone, but it’s especially troubling for women working out at the gym. While your body needs carbs and healthy fats for energy, protein is essential for tissue growth and repair. So how much protein is required? According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the standard food guide recommendation for the average individual is set around 46 grams per day for women and 65 grams per day for men.

The reasons for adding more protein to your diet plan are numerous. Of the 20 amino acids that make up protein, nine are essential. “Essential” means that your body can’t manufacture these aminos on its own. The only way they can be consumed is through food. Dietary protein supplies the building blocks of muscle tissue. It also supplies the materials needed for neurotransmitters and hormones.

The most common form of protein supplements being used these days and which is easily available everywhere are protein powders. Protein powders come in different forms. The three common ones are whey, soy, and casein protein. “Whey is the most commonly used, because it’s a water-soluble milk protein,” says Peter Horvath, PhD, associate professor in the department of exercise and nutrition sciences at the State University of New York at Buffalo. “It’s also a complete protein, so it’s got all those advantages.” (Complete proteins contain all nine of the amino acids necessary for human dietary needs.) People who are vegan may prefer soy protein, although its taste is sometimes considered to be more unpleasant, and it doesn’t dissolve as well in water.

There are couple of protein bars also available in the market now for a quick high protein snack on the go for those who do not have the time to whip up that shake.

From a contrarian view, you definitely don’t need to use protein powders if you’re trying to slim down. In fact, a high-protein diet from natural sources (nuts and lean meats, for example) may be better suited for your weight loss journey. Here’s why: While eating meals that are packed with protein helps fuel your body—and makes you feel fuller for a longer period of time—many protein powders contain lots of added sugar for flavor, which increases the total calorie count. Plus, they can be fairly high calorie even without a lot of extra sugar.

So if you still think you gotta have that healthy smoothie with the protein powders that everyone is raving about, then carefully read the label and see how much of the sugar  you are adding to your diet. And accordingly ensure that you make necessary changes in your food intake during the day by eating healthy low calorie food.

Protein supplements like many other things is a lifestyle choice with added nutritional benefits, but I feel these can be easily sourced through natural food options that are readily available around us. Hence make your choice wisely and carry on with your workout and healthy diet with full gusto. Feel awesome ladies!!!

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