Spring-boarding off my nutrition update from yesterday, I have decided to share a tasty food-hack for those of you who are interested in eating well, gaining lean muscle, and increasing protein.
During competition prep, I am eating anywhere between 150 – 170 grams of protein per day. Many people look at this number and get wide-eyed. How on earth can I possibly eat so much protein in one day!?
One of my (many) hacks is incorporating whey-based protein shakes.
What Is Whey?
Whey is extremely common. In fact, you’ve probably been using whey protein since childhood. Don’t worry, nobody spiked your Cheerios. Whey is actually one of the two proteins found in cow’s milk. Casein accounts for about 80% of milk protein and whey accounts for the remaining 20%. (bodybuilding.com)
Ever opened a yogurt container and found a clear liquid floating on top? That’s whey.
To make whey protein powder (the good stuff) whey first needs to be extracted from milk. Once whey has been extracted and isolated, it’s filtered to remove fat and carbohydrates. What’s left is the protein. Then, the more the whey is filtered, the purer the protein becomes. As filtering and protein content increase, carbs and fat decrease.
As you can see, whey is an excellent source of protein without adding additional carbohydrates or fat to my diet. (During competition prep, keeping a close eye on macronutrients is important.)
Why Is Whey Better?
Regardless of which form you use, pure or blended, concentrate or hydrolyzed, whey protein is undoubtedly the king of protein supplements. There’s a hulking body of research that suggests whey is better at stimulating muscle protein synthesis – the process that ultimately produces bigger and stronger muscles – than soy or casein.
Whey is a fantastic muscle-builder for several reasons.
- The first is its rapid rate of digestion. Whey is the fastest-digesting protein powder a person can buy.
- Once whey you drink your whey-based protein, amino acids (the building blocks of all proteins) break down rapidly and are absorbed into the bloodstream.
- Your blood then escorts these amino acids to muscle tissue, where they can quickly ignite protein synthesis. (bodybuilding.com)
Whatever it is you do—lifting, running, biking, climbing, team sports—you give it your all. Afterwards, your body needs something in return for all that hard work.
- Exercise stresses muscles and uses up glycogen.
- Studies recommend eating a combination of carbs (to restore glycogen) and protein (to repair muscles) post-workout.
- Your body’s ability to absorb nutrients is at its peak shortly after a workout.
If you’re a dedicated fitness chick looking to tone up and build some really great curves, adding a whey-based protein into your diet should be high on your list of priorities.
Premier Protein® has really incredible tasting protein shakes and bars that are made with whey & soy protein.
The Premier Protein® bars come in 11 amazing flavors. You all know I am always on the lookout for high-quality protein bars and this is definitely one of them.
- 30 grams of protein.
- Three grams of fiber.
- A good source of calcium.
- 0 grams of trans fat and hydrogenated oils and no high fructose corn syrup.
For the days when I am on the go and simply don’t want another blender-bottle-protein-powder-and-water shake, I grab my Premier Protein® Shakes.
(Fact: Strawberries & Cream is the BOMB) <3
So Berry Good 😀
- 30 grams of protein, including all of the essential amino acids.
- 24 vitamins and minerals.
- An excellent source of calcium.
- Just 160 calories.
- Low in fat and only one gram of sugar.
Protein is excellent as a recipe base as well. Here is one of my favorite whey-based fruit smoothies (perfect since the weather has decided to warm up a bit.) 🙂
Awesome Almond Strawberry Smoothie
- 5.5 oz Premier Protein® Strawberries & Cream
- 1/2 cup Unsweetened Almond Milk
- 1 cup Strawberries, Sliced
- Ice Cubes
- Sprinkle of Cacao Nibs, Slivered Almonds, or CocoWhip for the top!
- Combine everything (except Cacao Nibs/Slivered Almonds) in blender
- Blend, sprinkle with Cacao Nibs, Slivered Almonds, and/or CocoWhip.