Building muscle and getting into shape takes a lot of work, and it requires countless hours of exercising at home or in the gym.
Protein powder is a popular supplement for women because it provides the raw nutrition needed for building muscle. Although many protein supplements are made for men, some products are significantly more beneficial for women.
When following a standard program for weight lifting, most men get plenty of protein to make progress, but due to several lifestyle choices, most women don’t get enough protein. The best protein powders can help you get the protein that you need to accomplish your fitness goals.
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What Are Protein Powders?
Protein supplements are great for women because they make it easy to compensate for a shortage in dietary protein, and there are several great sources to choose from.
The reality is that it can be quite difficult to get enough protein for your fitness goals, and since most people don’t eat a high-quality diet, the odds of getting enough protein from food is further reduced.
Protein powder allows you to supplement your daily diet with this essential nutrient, and if you frequently feel weak and tired, then there is a good chance that you’re not getting enough protein in your diet. When shopping for protein powder, you’ll find several types of products to choose from, and one of the top options is whey protein.
Products that contain whey protein are the byproduct of cheese production, and it’s the stuff that is leftover after milk has been curdled and strained. The reason why most people choose whey is because it’s classified as a complete protein, which means it’s comprised of the eight major amino acids.
To perform essential repairs after a workout, your body needs these eight amino acids, and whey provides exactly what you need. Two other types of protein powder are casein and egg. Unlike whey, casein is digested slowly, and it’s not the best choice for a post-workout shake.
Benefits of Protein Powder
Supplements that contain protein powder give you the protein that you need to build lean muscle, which can make your body look toned and sculpted.
When trying to lose weight and build muscle, women must work harder than men to fight off cravings because they’re more likely to crave donuts, ice cream and chocolate. Men are more likely to crave a large piece of meat, which isn’t nearly as detrimental to a well-planned diet.
The average woman is also less likely to get enough protein from whole foods, and protein supplements allow you to get the protein that you’re lacking. One of the major benefits of protein supplements is appetite stabilization, and they can even help to boost your natural energy levels.
Your body doesn’t break down protein nearly as quickly as carbs, and since it requires more time for digestion, protein will keep you feeling full. Protein also has a higher thermic effect than other nutrients, which means your body uses a lot of energy to process it.
Another benefit of using protein powder supplements is muscle preservation, and the additional nutrition from the supplement will protect your muscle when dieting or exercising. By consuming a high-quality protein powder, you can even expect to get a stronger immune system.
How Much Should I Take?
If you don’t think you’re getting an adequate amount of protein in your daily diet, protein powder serves as an excellent way to make up the difference. There are also some signs that you can watch for, which can indicate the need for more protein.
When your body isn’t getting enough of this vital nutrient, you might feel tired constantly, and you’ll feel weak when lifting weights. A lack of dietary protein will cause your body to take longer to repair itself, and if you sustain an injury, it will require significantly more time to heal.
Before purchasing protein supplements, you should know how much to take, and although everyone is different, most health organizations recommend between 0.5 to 0.75 grams of protein for people who engage in daily recreational exercise.
For competitive athletes, this estimate jumps to 0.6 to 0.9 grams per day, and teenage athletes will do well with 0.8 to 0.9 grams per day.
If you love to exercise every day, and you’re trying to build muscle, then your body will need about one gram of protein per day. When consuming a protein supplement, you should always read the label because it will tell you the optimal amount of product to take.
What to Look for in a Good One?
The best protein supplement for someone else might not do much for you, and to find the product that is perfect for your needs, you need to know what to look for. The first step is to decide on a specific type of protein, and most protein powders are made out of egg, casein and whey.
The type of protein that you choose should have a great macronutrient profile, which means it’s packed with protein and made with minimal carbs and fats.
You might also want to consider a product that doesn’t have artificial ingredients, but unfortunately, you’re unlikely to find too many supplements that aren’t made with artificial ingredients and flavors. When shopping for the best protein powder for women, an important feature to consider is the taste.
Even if a product is made from high-quality sources and offers the perfect macronutrient profile, a bad taste will make the powder difficult to consume. However, since most people consume protein powder with juice, milk or water, you can always mask poor taste with a few bananas and strawberries.
Something that a lot of people don’t consider when shopping for these products is the mixability of the powder. Some products meet most of the basic requirements, but when it’s time to actually use them, they’re nearly impossible to mix.
The texture of the product is very important, and for the best results, look for something that consists of fine powder.
What to Avoid
One of the biggest mistakes that women make when taking protein supplements is taking too much, and most people end up consuming more powder than they need because they believe more is better.
Since the human body can only process one gram of protein per pound of body weight, it doesn’t make sense to consume more than your body can handle. Another mistake that you should avoid is assuming that all types of protein supplements are great products.
Most women want to burn fat and gain lean muscle mass, and to achieve this result, you should avoid supplements that contain too much extra fat.
A great way to avoid unnecessary fat is to choose a supplement that is derived from plant protein, but unfortunately, there aren’t many products like this to choose from. When using a protein supplement, you should never assume that the supplement will do the hard work for you.
The definition of a supplement is to fill the gaps in your regular diet, and you’ll still need to work hard in the gym. It’s possible to get too much of a good thing, and if you’re making smoothies with your protein powder, you should try to avoid products that are packed full of sugar and flavorings.
Below are brief reviews for five of the best protein powders for women that I’ve come across over the years.
ProteinSeries 100% Grass-Fed Whey Protein Isolate
Here we have a top product from ProteinSeries, and it’s made from grass-fed American cows. When compared to some other products on the market, this protein powder contains one of the highest ratios of protein to total weight, and you’ll get 28 grams of protein out of each 32-gram scoop.
The cows that this product is made from are hormone free, and you won’t find any artificial sweeteners, preservatives, gluten or food dyes. In fact, ProteinSeries takes pride in producing some of the cleanest protein supplements available.
This protein is ideal for post-workout recovery, and if you’re having trouble hitting your daily recommended protein intake, it’s worth considering.
Each container is packed with 30 servings, and you get 28 grams of protein per serving. A single serving is one scoop, and with some additional sodium and fat, you get 112 calories per scoop.
- Great for women who want to lose weight
- Made with an emphasis on quality
- Flavor is great
- Extracted from grass-fed, hormone-free cows
- Only available in two different flavors
Where to Get It: Buy it from Transparent Labs for about $59
Her Natural Whey Protein Powder
A major advantage of choosing this product is that it’s specifically formulated for women. The Her Natural whey protein powder contains 16 servings per bottle, and each serving contains 20 grams of high-quality protein.
Before purchasing this product, you should know that it also contains small amounts of carbs and fat. This protein powder is made from cows that are free of rBGH, and the cows are also fed with grass and not corn.
For taste, it’s formulated with natural flavors, and since it doesn’t contain gluten, it’s a top choice for women who have a gluten allergy. The Her Natural whey protein powder isn’t made with artificial sweeteners, and it supports the development of lean muscle mass.
The formula is designed for women, and it’s made from natural ingredients. A single serving delivers 20 grams of protein, two grams of fat and three grams of carbs.
- Texture isn’t too gritty
- Can make you feel energized
- Gently sweetened with stevia
- Tastes great
- Vanilla flavor might be too strong for some users
Where to Get It: Buy it on Amazon for about $26
Orgain Organic Plant Based Protein Powder
The Orgain Organic protein powder is made from plant protein, which is why it’s a popular choice for vegetarians. Each bottle contains 2.03 pounds of powder, and you get about 20 servings per container.
A single serving consists of two scoops and provides 21 grams of protein. You’ll get a total of 150 calories from each serving, and if you’re trying to lose weight, this product is worth considering.
To get the most use out of this product, you should have a busy lifestyle because it’s designed to mix quickly and effectively with your chosen liquid. The Orgain Organic vanilla bean protein powder doesn’t contain soy, GMOs or gluten, and it’s an excellent choice for vegans.
Since it’s certified USDA organic, you can trust that it’s made from high-quality ingredients, and the powder is formulated for convenience, taste, quality and value.
- Great vanilla flavor
- Won’t upset your stomach
- Tastes even better with almond milk
- Made with added fiber
- Not very soluble in water
Where to Get It: Buy it on Amazon for about $27
FitMiss Delight Healthy Nutritional Shake for Women
The FitMiss Delight Healthy Nutritional Shake is another popular product, and since it’s formulated for women, it contains ingredients that play well with your body chemistry.
A single container contains two pounds of powder, and you get 36 servings per bottle. A single serving is one scoop, and you get 16 grams of protein per serving.
This product is made from protein that comes from a vegetable source, which makes is an excellent choice for vegans. The unique formula can help you control your appetite, and it contains an optimal balance of nutrients for women.
You can use this product as a healthy snack or combine it with your daily meals. A single serving can help curb your appetite for several hours, and the low-carb formula is free of gluten.
- Texture is great when blended properly
- Taste is calm and nutty
- Leaves you feeling full and satisfied
- Great protein powder for a morning shake
- Scoop can be hard to find
Where to Get It: Buy it on Amazon for about $24
Optimum Nutrition 100% Whey Protein Gold Standard
Here we have one of the best whey protein supplements for women, and you get two pounds of product in every container. A single serving is one scoop, and you get 24 grams of protein per scoop.
To help you achieve maximum results, the main ingredient in this supplement is whey protein isolate, and you get four grams of glutamic acid and glutamine in every serving.
Unlike many alternative protein supplements, Optimum Nutrition Gold Standard protein delivers five grams of BCAA in every scoop, and currently, it’s still one of the best-selling protein supplements on the market.
- Not too sweet
- Made of high-quality whey isolate
- Mixes easily with your chosen liquid
- Perfect for smoothies
- Could come with a scoop
Where to Get It: Buy it on Amazon for about $30
With the best protein powder, you can make sure that you’re getting enough protein to meet your body’s daily requirements, and the additional protein will help you control your appetite.
The truth is that most women have trouble getting enough protein from a standard diet, and with the help of a high-quality supplement, you can get the protein that you need to lose weight and achieve your fitness goals.
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