"Our basic diets should be made up of the three macronutrients your body needs to function: protein, carbs and fat, as well as a variety of micronutrients. Protein can be consumed in a variety of ways, but protein powder is a convenient way to make sure you’re getting enough. I will always
recommend to clients that your first step to including enough protein in your diet is to get it from natural food sources. However, I do supplement with protein powder on days where I have significantly increased my training (for example weight training), or where my daily intake of protein has not been sufficient for my body’s needs.
Protein has been shown to keep you feeling fuller for longer too, so by switching out my afternoon snack with a protein shake I can keep my hunger pangs away. There have also been recent studies that have shown that having a high-protein breakfast, can help keep you feeling full for longer and reduce blood sugar spikes. This has also been linked to weight-loss."
So, with all the science and facts in mind, here are some less well known uses for protein powders.
Those looking to lose some body fat have many reasons to add protein products to their regime. As Yasmine said, protein itself leaves you feeling fuller for longer, a thick shake made from protein powder feels like a substantial snack and the liquid content will keep you hydrated. Try it as breakfast alongside a small bowl of muesli or as a blended smoothie with frozen berries and plant milk.
2. The elderly
Protein products are recommended for older people who perhaps have a smaller appetite than they used to, and need to maintain muscle mass. A scoop of powder can be added to soups, stews or desserts like yoghurt or custard.
3. Soy avoiders
In my pursuit of protein, I end up turning to soy quite a lot. Tofu, milk and many meat-substitutes are soy based - although of course pulses, nuts and seeds are a great source too. If you’re allergic to soy, or wanting to reduce your intake for other reasons, then a plant based protein made from pea, rice or hemp is a great option. Have you tried making protein pancakes yet?
Have you heard of runger? It's when you get back from a long run and feel like you need to eat ALL THE FOOD! This is when you need to refuel with a balance of carbs, fats and protein. How about chickpea pancakes (add some unflavoured protein powder), with avocado and a cheeky tomato salsa? Too lazy?! A protein shake and peanut butter on toast sounds pretty good to me too.
5. Non vegans
It's a common misconception that only vegans will be protein deficient. Non-vegans who fall into any of the above situations will benefit just as much as us plant-munchers.
I enjoy trying a variety of different protein powders (does that make me a bit of a geek?). As a busy and impatient person, I like to be able to mix my powder with just water in a shaker rather than with plant milk or in a smoothie so at the moment my favourite is from VFuelUK. Use their chocolatey Vegan Lean in my Snounty Ball recipe. Try it out and let me know what you think.