Often I get asked about what the “right” protein powder is and which company makes the best product.
There is one company that I fully support, but before I share which brand I take, I want you to understand what to look for in your protein. I am sure there are other companies that have great products, but from what I have found, there is one I can truly support. If you find another one that supports the following keys for a healthy product, then please post it below in the comments.
If your goal is weight loss, weight gain, daily balance, or recovery, then the same questions need to be asked about the quality of the product, BUT what will change is the quantity and specific ingredients.
When looking for your protein there are 4 specific keys that should be non-negotiable:
1) Grass-Fed cows – If your protein includes whey, then one thing that is non-negotiable is that the cows are treated humanely and are fed grass throughout their life. Cows were designed to eat grass, not genetically modified corn and soy, which alters their chemistry and ultimately affects the end users, us. When buying a protein powder, always ask the store rep or do your own research online and find out if the cows were fed grass or if they are grain-fed cows. Also, usually the cows that are fed with grass are treated more humanely. What this means is they are usually not injected with growth hormones to grow massive in an unnecessary time and are not fed antibiotics throughout their life to avoid getting sick from being inhumanely treated. Once again, if the cows are given junk and pumped full of chemical cocktails, then there is high likelihood you are getting the residual of this product. If the cows are fed grass and treated humanely and allowed to roam free, then the byproduct in your body is much healthier.
2) Soy Free – There is a lot of debate on this topic, but for the most part, soy in today’s world is not the best. Studies have shown that over 90% of soy in today’s world has been genetically modified, which means it has been modified with DNA. I don’t understand how people could possible believe something genetically modified could have a positive impact on our health, but the marketing teams for these companies are massive. When looking at your protein powder, be sure there is no ingredient called soy protein isolate. This is a product that has been through acid washes, alkaline washes, and heated up to extreme temperatures. Once again, I ask the question: How could something in an acid wash and heated to extreme temperatures have any form of nutritional value?
3) Artificial Sweeteners – Once again, this topic has been debatable, but like genetically modified soy, anything not found in nature has potential harm to the body. Adding and subtracting chemicals to a natural item that is found in nature is never preferable, and the body has a more difficult time recognizing the product. To this day, people still argue with me about how “safe artificial sweeteners” are, but common sense would say sugar in its raw form is much better than chemically altering its natural form. In fact, if artificial sweeteners were better for us, then health food companies would not be putting “No Artificial Flavors” on their products, and they would be marketing how healthy it is to have artificial sweeteners. If you see aspartame, sucralose, or saccharin, then I would avoid purchasing that protein product.
4) Undenatured – When we ingest our protein powder, the goal is to get the protein in the strongest form with the most nutrients, and having it undenatured is the best. Undenatured means the protein powder has not been heated to extreme levels that affect the protein at a cellular level. One of the strongest benefits of undenatured protein is it contains cysteine, which aids in the production of glutathione. Glutathione is a powerful antioxidant that is a major booster to the immune system and helps with knocking down inflammation. People who train at an elite level should expose themselves to higher levels of glutathione, as it is a great source for reducing oxidative stress from extreme levels of working out. Undenatured protein is a great source and can help with the production. An important key when making your shake with undenatured protein is to not blend the protein as this can alter the protein structure and end up denaturing it. The best way to use your protein is by putting it in a shaker and putting coconut water in there and then shake it up. This preserves the protein powder and does not expose it to extreme conditions.
As for me, my favorite protein powder is Stronger, Faster, Healthier (SFH), as they seem to have the highest quality ingredients and pass all 4 tests above. Usually when I look at a protein powder a client shows me, there are at least 20 ingredients, and half of them I cannot pronounce. SFH’s product usually has between 4–5 ingredients, and every ingredient is recognizable and usually a naturally occurring product.