Athletes need a range of nutrients to keep them in the best condition to compete, one of the most important being protein. Protein builds and repairs the muscles so that the body can grow stronger and thrive under the rigorous training schedules that athletes must stick to. Many of us get protein from a balanced diet but adding a supplement can help those of us that take part in intense sports to recover more quickly. Read on as we look at the best protein powder for athletes, and how to choose the best product for you.
Benefits of protein shakes
Getting enough protein is essential if you take part in any type of sports, no matter whether you’re an athlete, or you enjoy taking part just to have fun. Protein allows your body to build and repair damaged muscles, strengthen your bones, and can be used as an energy source – all of which are crucial when taking part in any sporting activity. Even if you eat a balanced diet, it can still be a struggle to get as much protein as your body really needs. But this is where protein shakes come in. These shakes are convenient, you can drink them on the go, after your workout to ensure that your body is getting what it needs to recover. It can also help to fuel and control your appetite.
How to choose the best protein shake
Protein shakes are not a new product, and there are so many on the market to choose from, which may make it more difficult for you to decide which is best. There are a few factors to consider when choosing the best shake for you, such as your goals. If you are actively training to build muscle and become stronger, a shake that contains whey may be the best option – it helps to build muscle and speed up recovery. If you are simply hoping to use these shakes to add more protein to your diet, plant-based protein could work best for you.
Another factor that you should consider when choosing a protein powder is your budget. Some protein shakes tend to be pricier than others because of the ingredients used, or just because of the brand. Keep your price point in mind when doing your research to get a better idea of what you can afford.
Ritual Daily Shake
This is one of the best overall protein shakes that you could choose to implement into your gym routine. It is made up of a combination of pea protein and L-methionine which helps to stimulate your muscles, and it is also said that it could be beneficial to your nervous system. If you are running – track, trail or treadmill, this protein shake could be the perfect choice to help your muscles repair and strengthen after a workout. It contains an all-natural sweetener, it’s organic, and not to worry if you’re a vegan – this will suit you too. If you have tried pea protein in the past and you’re not a fan, give this one a miss as you can taste it in this product.
Ladder Premium Whey
Cycling is becoming incredibly popular, and this protein powder could be your perfect post-ride drink. It is a whey protein that helps to repair your muscles and promote recovery after a long, strenuous workout like cycling. If you cycle competitively, or you’re training for a race, this powder can help you perform at your best each time as it helps to maximise recovery. This premium product is free from soy and gluten. You don’t have to worry about artificial additives with this product either. It is also certified safe for sport and doesn’t contain anything that is prohibited.
Nutricost Whey Protein
As we mentioned previously, it can be difficult to find a good protein powder that doesn’t break the bank – most of them are not budget-friendly. But this Nutricost whey protein powder is affordable, without skimping on quality. This powder is simple and gives you what you want when it comes to protein. It is versatile, you can add it to your breakfast, shakes, and smoothies to reap the benefits. This product is both soy and gluten-free and all flavours are natural. However, protein is the only nutrient you’ll get from this, as there are no additional nutrients added for you to benefit from.
Is it safe?
Most protein powders that make it onto the market are safe – but to be sure, when you are choosing a product that you think suits your needs, you should check that they have been third-party tested for any contaminants, and you should also check how they have been manufactured. Look for products that follow good manufacturing practices so that you know what you’re putting into your body is safe and will give you the best results.
Can you take them every day?
So, if you’ve chosen a type of protein powder that you think would benefit you the most, you might be wondering whether it is safe, and healthy for you to use them every day – whether you’re working out, or you’re having a rest day. You should make sure that you actually need to take protein powder before you commit to your purchase. Many of us get sufficient protein from the food we eat each day.
However, if you live a particularly busy lifestyle, and you don’t have time to work out how much protein is in your meals, or you simply don’t have time to prepare them, using a protein shake can help you to replenish the protein that you may not be getting from your diet. It doesn’t matter whether you’re training, or you’re resting, you should still be getting a larger quantity of protein than those that do not exercise or train. Because of this, it is safe to use your protein shakes every day if you really need them. It won’t cause you any harm and could help you to increase muscle mass.