There’s a lot of talk about protein going around. Questions arise such as, what’s the best source? Who needs to take a protein supplement? Will protein supplements help me lose weight?
We decided to chat to nutritional expert Dr Simone Laubscher, PhD and Jonathan ‘Jono’ Bush, (Elle Macpherson’s personal trainer), about the importance of protein, who should be supplementing it into their lives and why we should consider switching away from the popular whey based protein powders.
Why do we need protein?
Unlike fat, protein is not stored and must be consumed regularly for optimal body function. It is recommended 10-20% of our daily intake should come from protein.
Laubscher explains that protein forms the building blocks of the human body. “It is in every part of us and the second largest component after water. The benefit goes beyond muscles; it is essential for tissue repair and growth, supports a healthy metabolism and promotes a feeling of fullness for longer. Without it our metabolisms become sluggish, we lack energy, give into our cravings and reach for the wrong foods.”
Why should I take a protein supplement?
Protein rich foods can help us to feel more full and satisfied so we are less likely to pick unhealthy foods during the day. After exercise, protein helps to deliver necessary nutrients to repair and replenish our muscles. “Modern living and an unbalanced diet means we often supplement protein intake with energy sources like caffeine, sugar, carbohydrates or saturated fats,” says Laubscher.
You should consider a protein supplement if:
- You lift weights make sure you consume high protein meals on your workout days to help with muscle repair and growth.
- You do strenuous endurance activities such as swimming, walking & running.
- You are aged over 50, you need more protein to properly maintain and build muscle
- You miss meals and are short on time make a fruit or green smoothie to drink on the go and boost it with a protein supplement
- You only consume plant based proteins you may just need to look at increasing your intake of vegetable proteins, pea, brown rice, hemp, fermented soy products are all great options.
Is it the best Whey?
Dr Laubscher explains that whey protein is the watery portion of milk that separates from the curds when making cheese. A lot of protein supplements are created using whey, but even if you don’t stick to a plant based diet you might like to consider switching to a plant based protein supplement. There are common health problems [http://www.nutribodyprotein.com/protein-concerns.php] associated with whey, dairy and soy protein supplements, especially problems with digestion.
Dr Laubscher says that men in particular should reconsider their source because most whey protein powders are derived from non-organic cow's milk, which contains oestrogen, a predominantly female hormone. “Too much of this in the male diet can have adverse effects such as reduced libido and increased abdominal body fat as well as ‘moobs’ (man boobs)."
Jono adds that he “knows so many guys out there who are using these cheap whey proteins to bulk up. From the outside everything’s fantastic, they looked ripped. But on the inside it’s causing their body long-term, damaging harm.”
Read more about Nourishing Protein, a natural plant based protein to boost your metabolism and deliver more than 15g of protein per serve.
Find out more about the 4 week body plan recommended by Dr Simone Laubscher to assist with weight loss that incorporates safe and manageable lifestyle changes.