How to Choose the Correct Protein Powder – Tips and Top Picks to Meet Your Diet and Health Needs #wellbeingwednesday

These days, you can’t escape the push for protein, particularly, in powdered form.

Over time, these products that were once niche, have become very mainstream. In the past, protein powders were for professional athletes and body builders; now it seems that everyone has jumped on the protein powder bandwagon. While it’s your personal prerogative to decide if you want to incorporate protein powders into your diet, I’d like to advise you on a few things:

  1. Not all protein powders are created equally. For that matter, many on the market are loaded with ingredients that are not health promoting. Choose wisely! Do your research, read ingredients (not just the Nutritional Value chart) and talk to a registered dietician or other health professional well suited to answer your nutrition questions.
  2. Don’t believe everything you read and see … starting with the labels on protein powders. A lot of these brands are all about hype, posting pictures of bulging muscles, trim waists, and fit men and women. While it may be an obvious point, we are often lured to try these products without realizing that protein powder is not a magic bullet. They won’t do much for us nutritionally if we don’t eat balanced and whole foods, and have an active lifestyle.
  3. Beware of protein spiking. The act of lying about the amount of protein in powders is an unscrupulous practice in this business. Companies will spike their products with other ingredients that will still indicate that the nitrogen level in their powder is legit. So, look for protein powders that have been third party verified, or call the company and ask to learn more about their testing standards.
  4. Consider your dietary restrictions when selecting a protein powder. One ingredient to be mindful of if you are allergic or intolerant to dairy, is whey protein. If you are vegan, you will also want to select a non-whey based powder that uses vegan protein sources. For those with Celiac Disease, make sure your powder is gluten-free.

With these tips in mind, here are some protein powders that I’d recommend.

Vega: This company provides vegan, plant-based, gluten-free, and non-GMO products. Their items are free of soy, artificial flavours, colours and sweeteners.

Sunwarrior: This company provides another great option for a gluten-free and vegan protein powder. Sunwarrior has many product line options th

at are certified organic and fermented for better digestion.

Manitoba Harvest Hemp Pro: Of course, this powder is all about the omega fats and protein from hemp seeds. This Canadian company is non-GMO with a dedicated hemp facility. They use no additives or preservatives in their products.

Progressive Organic Whey: Like most protein powders on the market, the protein in this product is derived from whey. This company is dedicated to using whey derived from pasture-raised and grass-fed cattle that have been raised without steroids or milk-inducing hormones. This is not common in many whey based protein powders, which in my opinion makes this a much better option than regular whey protein powders. In addition, this product is gluten-free and organic.

Genuine Health fermented Greek yogurt proteins: This protein powder is derived from the milk of grass-fed cattle that has been fermented into Greek yogurt. Fermentation allows for a higher absorption rate of the protein and promotes digestive health. This product is also gluten-free, soy-free and non-GMO.

JAIME SLAVIN is a nutritionist, registered dietician, Masters of Public Health, food educator and advocate for your health and wellbeing. JAIMESLAVIN.COM

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