PROTEIN SHAKES, TO DRINK OR NOT TO DRINK?
To drink, or not to drink? While this answer may be simple when it comes to the booze, protein shakes can bring you into a realm of confusion, but I guess the same could be said for the booze too. So, what to do about the protein shakes, are they good for you? Are they actually helping you achieve your fitness/health goals? Should you be drinking them? Pretty loaded questions, and it really depends on your personal thoughts on nutrition, and what constitutes healthy eating.
First, why are you drinking them? Are you attempting to get some post workout nutrition, or simply don’t have the time for a full meal? If that is the case, a shake can be a great option, but what holds relevance is the ingredients of your protein shake. I will often ask my clients what type of protein they are consuming, and will often hear of chocolate chip cookie flavor, or strawberry blast protein….. come on, do you seriously think chocolate chip cookie flavored protein powder is really all that great for you. Just eat some damn cookies if you’re going down that route. So, protein shakes can be a quality addition to your dietary programs, and give you solid amounts of nutrition, but it comes down to the nitty gritty of whats in your shake and what is in your protein.
Secondly, are you drinking them because you think you’re helping your health overall? Any fitness magazine is filled with ads for protein supplements with a bunch of juiced up meatheads… nothing against the meathead population, just not my cup of tea. Those guys are not ripped simply because they are drinking protein shakes, they’re ripped because they spend countless hours doing pretty non-functional workout programs, and load up their bodies with synthetic hormones. AND, yes this is a big one to understand, Just because they are ripped, does not mean they are healthy! If you are drinking shakes because you feel as if your overall health is benefitting, then you need to be especially concerned with the ingredients in your shakes, and no, shakes alone won’t make you ripped or make you lose weight.
Protein shakes can be a really good way to quickly consume some quality nutrition, and can be great pre/post surf, but consider what is in that protein. Most proteins are full of NON-food ingredients, they are science in a shake. Read the label, and you’ll agree.
- most protein powders contain soy protein. This could be a post in itself, but you do not need to be consuming soy protein. Forget about whatever health benefits you’ve heard about soy. Soy is basically a toxic food substance that is WAY over-consumed. It’s loaded with phytoestrogens, that will disrupt your hormonal system, it’s got ALOT of phytic acid, which prevents your body from absorbing other essential nutrients, and has trypsin inhibitors, which block your body from protein absorption! http://www.soyonlineservice.co.nz/ Some good information if you’re still a soy believer.
- chocolate chip cookie protein powder??!!? bullshit, that’s called a bunch of artificial sweetener and artificial flavoring. If you’re trying to improve your health, these are exactly the things to stay away from. They are just extra burdens for you liver.
- But I need my extra protein!!! eat a steak! Often, protein powders are so chemically, and artifically created, that the actual protein they are using is so far from the natural source, that you are basically paying to have expensive bowel movements.
- Whey is bascially derived from milk. It used to be considered refuse from cheese manufacturing processes, but once it was found to have amino acids, a host of manufacturing opportunities presented themselves. As whey is produced from milk, think of the quality of milk being used to manufacture whey. Is it from grass-fed happy cows… absolutely not. It’s from commercially raised, pumped full of hormones and antibiotics, sick cows. Sick cows don’t make quality milk, so how great is that whey???
What to drink then? There are some good options out there, you just first need to clear your head of all the advertising you’ve seen about
needing to drink your protein shakes to get ripped, and have a faster recovery. As a surfer, I’m all for quick boosts of nutrition, and understand the need for some easily digestible nutrition, but you’ve gotta focus on getting some REAL FOOD that your body can use.
Sun Warrior Protein makes a quality protein powder. It’s also marketed as a vegan protein powder option. I’m NOT at all into the vegan lifestyle, and in fact, I believe it’s pretty detrimental to long term health…. but whatever floats your boat. It’s a good protein powder though.
Designs for Health: Whey Cool, PaleoMeal: These are both some pretty good protein powders as well.
Free Range Eggs: if you are getting some really high quality eggs, throw some into some milk, with some fruit,,,,,,BAM, protein shake. That’s about as real as a protein shake can get. IMPORTANT, make sure you are getting really high quality eggs! Commercial raw eggs=bathroom/sick time.
Gelatin: http://www.greatlakesgelatin.com/ This is REAL protein powder. Real food amino acids, real protein!!
Greens Powders….. great additions to a shake, just make sure you’re getting a quality product. Just like the protein powder you are using, it’s only as good as what’s making up the ingredients.
Protein shakes can be awesome, and they can also be complete crap. Look at the ingredients on your protein powder, and if it’s full of a bunch of stuff that doesn’t at all resemble real food, then I personally wouldn’t consume it. Think real food, which will equal real health. So maybe your next post surf shake, ditch the artifically flavored strawberry shake, and get some milk, some fruit, and some free range eggs, and give your body something it can use.
Protein Shake Recipe: Sun Warrior Protein (you flavor of choice), 2-3 dates, 2Tbsp organic almond/peanut butter, RAW milk…… yep, it’s pretty serious!
So bottom line, protein shakes can be a good source of protein and nutrition, all dependant upon the quality of the ingredients. Don’t fall into the fad gimmicks of flavored protein shakes and all the media/advertising surrounding supplements. Your body needs real food, and most proteins are far from that. Use your discretion, and focus on real quality food, and occasionally some good protein shakes…… or just fruit and eggs!