What Is Whey Protein
There are three main types of whey protein: Whey protein concentrate, whey protein isolate, and whey protein hydrolysate. Here’s how each differs:
- Whey protein concentrate : This is a concentrated protein that keeps more of the nutrients. Most non-isolate proteins are comprised of WPC.
- Whey protein isolate : This is similar to WPC but most of the carbohydrates, fat, and fat-soluble vitamins have been removed, so the powder has a higher percentage of protein. Typically, isolate is digested more quickly and, therefore, more agreeable for some. For that reason, most trainers and registered dieticians recommend opting for WPI, though it’s often more expensive.
- Whey protein hydrolysate : WPH is considered pre-digested since it breaks down the amino acids the building blocks of proteins to help with quicker absorption.
What Were Looking For
Protein source: Every nutritionist we spoke to told us that the first and main decision is whether you want an animal- or plant-based protein powder, which they say comes down to dietary preference. If youre going animal-based, powders with whey protein are generally what they recommend for the most digestible fast-acting powder to help with muscle building and weight loss. There are two types of whey protein whey protein isolate and whey protein concentrate and the experts say the best kind is whey protein isolate, because it is strained in a way that gives it a lower lactose content than whey protein concentrate.
For vegans, vegetarians, lactose-intolerant folks, and anyone else who doesnt eat animal products, plant-based protein powders are the way to go. As the nutritionists told us, powder made with pea protein is generally seen as the most effective plant-based alternative to whey. And they say a pea protein isolate, like a whey protein isolate, is even better, because it has the highest amount of protein per scoop. While they warn that some people may experience issues like stomachaches with plant-based powders, all of the ones in this story are easy to digest, according to the folks who recommend them.
How We Select Supplements
Our team works hard to be transparent about why we recommend certain supplements you can read more about our dietary supplement methodology here.
We support supplements that are evidence-based and rooted in science. We value certain product attributes that we find to be associated with the highest quality products. We prioritize products that are third-party tested and certified by one of three independent, third party certifiers: USP, NSF, or ConsumerLab.
It’s important to note that the FDA does not review dietary supplements for safety and effectiveness before they go to market. Our team of experts has created a detailed, science-backed methodology to choose the supplements we recommend.
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Garden Of Life Meal Vanilla Powder
Image courtesy Garden of Life
Sip on this nutritious drink. A 1-cup serving of Hemp Protein has 22 grams of clean, organic plant protein with 44 superfoods, such as grass juices, fruits and vegetables, and fiber to keep you full for hours.
This muscle-building, energy-boosting meal replacement has everything you’ll need to help you gain muscle and have more energy. It is free of the 8 most common allergens.
Best Overall: Sprout Living Epic Protein Vanilla Lucuma
Certified organic, vegan, gluten-free, soy-free, and kosher
Contains 4 grams of fiber
Contains inulin which may cause GI discomfort
Who else recommends it? Good Housekeeping picked Sprout Living Epic Protein Vanilla Lucuma.
What do buyers say? 87% of 1,600+ Amazon reviewers rated this product 4 stars or above.
If youre looking for a slightly sweet protein powder that tastes great mixed with almond milk or in your favorite smoothie, Sprout Livings Epic Protein Vanilla Lucuma is the top choice. The neutral vanilla flavor provides a hint of sweetness but doesnt overpower the beverage its mixed into. Plus, the gluten-free, dairy-free, grain-free plant-based protein powder checks all the nutrition boxes.
Epic Proteins protein blend is made from yellow peas and a mix of sunflower, pumpkin, sacha inchi, and cranberry seeds. Each 2-scoop serving provides 19 grams of complete plant-based protein, including 4 grams of dietary fiber. It is important to note that this powder contains inulin from Jerusalem artichokes which may cause digestive discomfort for some people.
Key protein sources: yellow pea, sunflower seed, pumpkin seed| Serving size: 2 scoops | Amount of protein per serving: 19 grams| Calories per serving: 146 | Vegan: Yes | Gluten-free: Yes| Additives: Yes – Stevia leaf | Price at time of publication: $35
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Rsp Truefit Protein Powder
RSP has a number of organic protein supplements. One of the most popular is a line of protein powders made from grass-fed whey protein. This supplement only comes in chocolate and vanilla flavors, but they are both optimized for exceptional taste. In addition, every serving has 25 g. of ultra protein made from organic sources that dont use hormones or antibiotics.
Best Vegan: Sunwarrior Warrior Blend Chocolate
Courtesy of Amazon
Includes 6 milligrams of iron
Higher in sodium
The USDA Organic, Non-GMO Project Verified Sunwarrior Warrior Blend Chocolate takes the top pick for plant-based chocolate protein with 17 grams of protein per scoop and a creamy chocolate taste. Sunwarrior uses organic flavorings, including cocoa, chocolate flavor, stevia extract, and ground coconut to create a sweet, nutty, and chocolatey flavor.
The proprietary protein blend is made up of pea protein, hemp protein, and goji berry. While peas and hemp are good sources of plant-based protein, goji berries are a rich source of iron. Each scoop of this powder provides 6 milligrams of iron, a bonus for vegetarians and vegans whose diets may be low in this important nutrient.The high protein blend is also free of soy, gluten, and dairy.
If you are watching your sodium intake, please note that this protein powder does contain a substantial amount of sodium348 milligrams per serving.
Key protein sources: Pea, Hemp, Goji Berry| Serving size: 1 scoop | Amount of protein per serving: 17 grams| Calories per serving: 100 | Vegan: Yes | Gluten-free: Yes| Additives: Yes – Guar gum, steviol glycosides | Price at time of publication: $41
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Optimum Nutrition Gold Standard 100% Whey Protein Vanilla 546 Lb Bag
Get in the zone with the Gold Standard of whey protein to support muscle growth and recovery. Each serving of GOLD STANDARD 100% WHEYprovides 24 grams of high-quality whey protein, made primarily with whey protein isolate, which has much of the carbs and fat isolated out.
This great-tasting whey formula mixes easily into cold water or milk. In addition, its gluten-free and banned substance tested for your peace of mind while you work to achieve your health and fitness goals.
Find your Zone with the uncompromising quality and performance support of GOLD STANDARD 100% WHEY. Gender: unisex.
|Assembled Product Dimensions
|12.00 x 6.00 x 6.00 Inches
Best Single Ingredient: Sunwarrior Classic Vegan Sprouted Brown Rice Protein Powder
Courtesy of Amazon
Not considered a complete protein
Sunwarriors Classic Protein is a clean and simple brown rice protein powder with no added flavor. Its made up of only one ingredient: organic brown rice protein. This plant-based powder subtly boosts the protein content while seamlessly blending into the beverages it’s mixed with. This also makes it easy to use as an ingredient in both sweet and savory recipes. One scoop provides 20 grams of protein with no added sugar or alternative sweeteners. It is also free of gluten, soy, and dairy.
The brown rice powder is sprouted and fermented, meaning that the brown rice is soaked for a period of time and then allowed to germinate. The sprouting and fermenting process makes it easier for your body to access and use beneficial nutrients.
Key protein sources: Brown rice| Serving size: 1 scoop | Amount of protein per serving: 20 grams| Calories per serving: 100 | Vegan: No| Gluten-free: Yes| Additives: No | Price at time of publication: $41
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Orgain Organic Plant Based Protein Powdercreamy Chocolate Fudge
as of January 5, 2023 1:54 am
- New look and label, same great product! Includes 1 Orgain Organic Plant Based Protein Powder, Creamy Chocolate Fudge
- 21 grams of organic plant based protein , 2 grams of organic dietary fiber, low net carbs, 0 grams of added sugar, 150 calories per serving
- USDA organic, vegan, gluten free, dairy free, lactose free, low net carbs, no added sugar, soy free, kosher, Non GMO, carrageenan free, and no artificial ingredients
- Mix with water, milk, or your favorite protein shake recipe for a quick breakfast or snack drink. Use when baking to give your cakes, muffins, brownies, or cookies a protein and energy boost
- Ideal for healthy, on the go nutrition for men, women, and kids. These are great for meal replacement, smoothie boosters, muscle recovery, and pre or post workouts
Hailed by most as one of the top vegan protein powders and the best tasting plant-based protein powder to bootOrgain Organic is flawless. Its also one of the most wallet-friendly vegan options in the market. Let that sink in for a moment.
Unsurprisingly, its kosher, gluten-free and 100% organic, the Holy Grail for many fitness gurus! This alkaline powder delivers 21g of plant-based protein in each serving, plus 5g of organic fiber, only 150 calories, and 4g of carbs. Its available in five different flavors, all of which are easily blended into most beverages.
Is Protein Powder Beneficial
We recommend a food first approach to nutrition, and protein is no exception. Most people can meet their protein needs from food alone and therefore do not need to supplement with protein powder. If it is feasible to you, try to get your protein from foods including chicken, fish, meat, dairy, soy, legumes, nuts, seeds and whole grains.
One easy way to do this is to include a protein source in each meal and one snack per day. However, if you have dietary restrictions that reduce your protein intake, struggle to eat protein-containing foods at certain times of day, or are an athlete with slightly higher protein needs that you are not able to meet using food alone, we recommend keeping a high-quality, third-party tested protein powder on hand.
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Fitcrunch Whey Protein Powder
FITCRUNCH is one of the most underappreciated health supplement companies on the market. This company has a line of delicious tri-blend whey protein powders that are perfect for people on a keto diet. This supplement was made with a recipe from chef Robert Irvine. It is made to taste like pumpkin pie with a hint of delicious spices. Every serving contains 25 g. of quality proteins and only three carbohydrates. It does not contain any soy or GMOs.
Optimum Nutrition Gold Standard Casein Protein Powder Chocolate Peanut Butter 2 Lb Tub
Using a shaker cup is the easiest and most convenient way to mix up a consistently great casein shake every time. Just add one heaping scoop of Gold Standard 100% Casein to your shaker cup and then pour in 10-12 oz of your preferred beverage.
Cover and shake for 25-30 seconds. Blender: Add one heaping scoop of Gold Standard 100% Casein to a blender filled with 10-12 oz of water, milk, or your favorite beverage. Blend for 20-30 seconds. Then add 3-4 ice cubes and blend for an additional 30 seconds.
Spoon Stirred: If you forgot your shaker cup or dont have time to get out the blender, you can just add one heaping scoop of Gold Standard 100% Casein to a glass filled with 10-12 oz of cold water, milk, or you favorite beverage.
Then mix it up with a spoon for about 30 seconds or until powder is dissolved. Micellar Casein, Cocoa , Natural And Artificial Flavors, Inulin, Salt, Lecithin, Gum Blend , Acesulfame Potassium, Sucralose, Aminogen.
Keep out of reach of children. Allergen Information: Contains Milk, Soy , And Wheat Ingredients.
Reviews From Real Customers
For too long I had relied solely on whey protein to help build muscle, especially after intense work outs. It definitely helped, but often times I would wake up the morning after not feeling that much better.
If you have been missing something in the protein department, I would absolutely try this Casein.
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Complete Protein Is The Best Protein
One term you may have heard around the gym or juice bar is complete protein. A complete protein is made up of the 9 essential amino acids protein building blocks that the body cant produce on its own . These are: histidine, leucine, isoleucine, tryptophan, lysine, phenylalanine, methionine, valine and threonine.
There are several ways you can add protein to your diet. The most popular is a protein shake, using our top pick for best-tasting protein powder or the best protein powder for women, blended together with fruit and/or ice in a blender or personal blender. Protein bars and beef jerky are also great for pumping up your protein intake.
When shopping for protein powder, look for those that contain at least these three essential amino acids: valine, leucine and isoleucine. Also known as BCAAs , these three are especially important for recovery and muscle protein synthesis. For the vegans out there, sunflower seed, pea and soy proteins are all good choices for getting your BCAAs.
Musclepharm Combat Protein Powder 5 Protein Blend Banana Cream 4 Pounds 54 Servings
as of January 5, 2023 1:54 am
- UNIVERSITY-STUDY FORMULATED: MusclePharm Combat Protein Powder was created for athletes who demand optimized recovery, muscle growth, and support strength.
- AWARD-WINNING TASTE: Our essential whey protein powder mixes easily and goes great with almond milk, water, milk, fruits, and vegetables. Its perfect for great-tasting smoothies and shakes
- 5 PROTEIN SOURCES: Our isolate whey powder contains 25 grams of protein from 5 unique protein sources. They include both fast- and slow-digesting proteins, fueling muscles and delivering performance for hours
- BANNED-SUBSTANCE TESTED and certified by Informed-Choice. Athletes who see the Informed-Choice logo on a product can be assured it has undergone rigorous checks and testing to ensure that it is not contaminated with banned substances and is safe to use
- 100% SATISFACTION GUARANTEE: All MusclePharm products are backed by a 30-day full money-back guarantee.
Are you on the market for the best tasting protein powder with a timed-release option? Muscle Pharm has your back with this mixture of five indulgent proteins which are designed to deliver slow, medium and fast proteins to ensure enhanced performance, support muscle strength, as well as provide an ongoing energy boost.
In addition to the award-winning taste, this product stands out in providing BCAAs, glutamine, digestive enzymes, and has 25 grams of protein per serving.
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Optimum Nutrition Platinum Hydrowhey Protein Powder 100% Hydrolyzed Whey Protein Powder Flavor: Turbo Chocolate 35 Pounds
- ONS MOST ADVANCED WHEY exceeding all expectations
- 30 Grams ULTRA PURE PROTEIN PER SERVING supports your muscle building goals
- 15.5 Grams NATURALLY OCCURRING & ADDED EAAs supports muscle recovery and growth
- GREAT ANY TIME PROTEIN SOURCE perfect for post workout recovery, between meals, or anytime additional protein is needed in your diet
Check Latest Price
In a word: excellence. Hydrolyzing breaks larger proteins down into smaller pieces that are able to get into your system rapidly, enabling your muscles to start rebuilding quickly. In addition to being fast, Platinum Hydrowhey is also ultra-pure.
Thats because its made entirely with hydrolyzed whey protein isolates. So theres no excess fat, cholesterol, or lactose to slow down your progress.
Reviews From Real Customers
I started using the Platinum Hydrowhey when my diet advanced after gastric bypass surgery. It is definitely gut friendly and doesnt cause GI upset. I prefer the taste of the Turbo Chocolate but occasionally enjoy the Vanilla.
I have sampled different brands that are isolate but not hydrolyzed and immediately regretted it. This protein is part of my daily routine and I buy using subscribe and save with Amazon along with Anabolic Glycosurge.
How Long Does Protein Powder Last
The shelf life of protein powder varies.
Research is somewhat lacking, but several studies have indicated that whey protein powders generally last between 9 to 19 months when its stored properly.
However, the shelf life for most protein powders is extended up to two years through various additives.
Is your protein powder past its expiration date? Its usually not a problem to consume them shortly after the expiration date since they are low moisture and thus not likely to foster bacteria.
However, when protein powders age, they tend to start losing their protein content.
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Garden Of Life Organic Vegan Sport Protein Powder
Truly Clean’s organic plant-based protein helps you build muscle and recover faster, while the added probiotics improve your metabolism. With 30g of complete protein per serving, this formula is perfect for athletes or anyone looking to add more protein to their diet.
Reduce muscular pain and speed up recovery from intense exercise with Organic Turmeric, Organic Tart Cherries, and Antioxidant Polyphenols. During training, support the immune system’s health with 2 Billion CFU of Clinically Studied Probiotics.
Who Should Use Whey Protein
Whey can be used by anyone that is not meeting their protein needs through diet alone. Whey certainly doesn’t discriminate, as both men and women can stand to benefit from protein powder if they aren’t meeting their needs through their diet. Whey protein is also a good choice for those who engage in strength or resistance training since it can assist with building muscle. However, it’s always important to consult with your doctor to be sure you don’t have a condition that requires a lower protein diet.
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