You need good quality protein in your diet if your objective is fat-loss and muscle gain. You may be interested to know that the average American citizen gets their daily protein requirement quite easily with the average three meals a day. A protein drink or bowl of cereal with milk for breakfast a peanut butter sandwich for lunch and some chicken, meat or fish for dinner is all it takes.
Research tells us that the average protein requirement for the maintenance of health is 46 grams of protein for women and 56 grams of protein for men. This is a figure released officially by the Center for Disease Control (CDC) and does not include any extra demand for protein that exercise may have on your body.
It is all about amino acids which are the building blocks of protein and they come basically from two sources. Your body manufactures some of the 20 amino acids needed to make protein and the others but it is the other so called essential amino acids that come from the food we eat or drink.
The definition of a complete protein source is a food or a drink that contains all of the nine essential amino acids. Complete protein foods include eggs, fish, milk, meat, cheese and poultry. It is good to note that any incomplete protein source contains low amounts of at least one essential amino acid.
Examples of incomplete protein sources include soy, grains, rice, dried beans and dried peas. If eaten in the same day, some incomplete proteins such as rice and beans often called complementary proteins can provide enough of the essential amino acids to form protein.
There are many different bodybuilders and people looking to lose fat who seek to increase their protein intake. Any person who is unable to consume enough protein through food sources may choose to add a protein powder to their diets.
These protein powders are often very good and offer easily absorbed sources of protein. These protein powders are then blended with water, milk or other liquids to form a milkshake or smoothie. The manufacturers use various types of protein sources to make the powders.
Protein powders made from egg whites, soy, whey and casein provide complete protein. The best of these is without a doubt the whey which provides the highest quality of protein because it digests quickly and provides high levels of branched-chain amino acids (BCAA) to prevent loss of lean muscle mass.
There are two different types of whey protein that you can get and the first is whey concentrate that contains some lactose, the sugar in milk, and the other is lactose-free whey isolates. It should be noted here that protein powders made from hydrolyzed collagen and those labeled as amino acid doses do not provide a complete protein.
When putting together the mix for your own personal and perfect smoothie or protein drink you need to consider a few things. The first thing you should do is to check the source of protein to determine if it provides all nine essential amino acids.
But there are other considerations which also include the cost, taste, ease of mixing, sugar and fat content, calories and amount of protein per serving, which varies between 15g to 35g per serving. If you plan to drink a protein shake in addition to your regular diet, look for lower-calorie versions marketed as pre-workout, post-workout or between-meal snacks.
You will also be able to find many different meal replacement shakes that can contain as much as 35g of protein per serving, along with higher amounts of fat, sugar and calories as well. If you use a meal replacement shake as a snack, you may gain weight so be careful if you are doing it specifically for fat-loss.