Eating enough protein on a daily basis is important, especially if you are someone trying to build muscle. Whey protein powder is one of the many products to provide you with the needed amount of protein. But what if you can’t find whey protein or if you want to find alternatives to it? Are there any other options aside from meat and chicken that we all know to be great protein sources?
What are the best substitutes for whey protein? If you are looking into protein powder options, you can choose between soy protein, hemp protein, pea protein, brown rice protein, and egg white protein. Other foods that you can incorporate into your diet to boost your protein intake include fat-free Greek yogurt, lentils, low-fat curd cheese, and nuts.
In this article, we will tell you about nine whey protein substitutes. You will surely find an option that works best for your diet and needs.
There are two types of protein in milk one of which is whey. This protein is easily separated and is considered a wholesome protein in and of itself. If there are two things you should know about whey protein it is that the lactose content in it is not high and it contains all of the nine amino acids that cannot be made by the body. This makes whey protein an exceptional supplement.
Whey protein is manufactured during the cheesemaking process. As the milk separates into curds and whey, the latter is filtered and dried to reach a powder form. This is how whey protein is made.
Consuming whey protein helps you gain muscle mass and lose fats. But there is more to whey protein. It is also rich in a range of nutrients and has a lot of benefits. From improving blood pressure and cholesterol levels to promoting heart health, this protein is a good supplement for not only people who work out but also for those who don’t.
It is easy to incorporate whey protein into one’s diet in the form of smoothies and shakes. Whey protein in its pure form is not very tasty. This is why many people prefer buying flavored powders, Popular whey protein flavors include chocolate, vanilla, hazelnut, etc.
If for some reason you need to find a substitute for whey protein, you can look into not only powdered protein coming from plants or eggs but also multiple other products that you may be consuming daily but didn’t know that you could use as an alternative to whey protein.
Here are 9 protein powder substitutes you can use.
Soy protein, also known as soy protein isolate, is not very common. However, this protein powder that comes from soybeans can be a great whey protein substitute, especially for vegans and those with a dairy intolerance.
The dehydrated and powdered soybeans are very low in fat. They don’t contain sugar, dietary fiber, and cholesterol.
One ounce of soy protein powder contains 23 grams of protein.
If soy protein powders are not something you are interested in, you can provide your protein intake by consuming such soybean-based products as tofu and tempeh.
Soy protein is a good pick for people whose primary goal is not to build muscle mass but only get the required daily amount of protein. What makes soy protein different from its plant-based counterparts is that it contains all the essential amino acids. Just like whey protein, soy protein is also considered to be a complete protein.
Hemp protein is made from ground hemp seeds. It is a good vegan substitute for whey protein. And unlike whey protein, hemp protein doesn’t taste that bad. It has an earthy and grassy flavor as one could expect but the nutty undertones make this protein powder a favorite for many.
Hemp protein is a complete protein, containing all nine essential amino acids. The protein content in hemp protein is 15 grams per serving (30 grams). This is lower than the protein content in whey or soy protein powders but it will certainly work as an additive to your smoothies and shakes to boost your daily protein intake.
Animal protein is typically harder to digest compared to plant proteins. But hemp protein seems to be an exception as many studies prove that the protein content in the powdered seeds is almost fully digested by the body.
Pea protein is one of the most common plant proteins. This protein powder comes from yellow peas and can be a great addition to any diet. It caters to a range of people as not only is pea protein vegan but it is also hypoallergenic.
20 grams of pea protein contains 15 grams of protein. Pea protein contains a high amount of iron and all nine essential amino acids.
If you want to avoid whey protein and don’t know which plant-based protein powder to choose, go with pea protein. It is versatile and can fit into different diets. Additionally, the flavor is neutral. You can, of course, buy chocolate or vanilla-flavored pea protein powder if you want to make sure it tastes good.
Brown rice protein powder is another alternative to whey protein if you are looking into plant-based powdered protein options.
Rice is a well-known source of carbohydrates. With brown rice protein powder, however, you don’t need to worry about increasing your carbs intake. During the manufacturing process, the protein is isolated which means that there are almost no carbs left behind.
A scoop of brown rice protein powder contains 25 grams of protein and only 4 grams of carbs. It is also fat-free and tastes neutral.
You can buy a tub of egg white protein powder instead of whey protein next time you fail to find it.
Egg white protein powder is known for being low in calories, fat-free, and cholesterol-free. A serving of egg white protein powder contains around 23 grams of protein.
Egg white protein powder doesn’t taste like eggs as some people might think. As many people state, it tastes quite pleasant.
If you are not a big fan of protein powders, you can choose fat-free Greek yogurt as a source of protein.
The good thing about Greek yogurt is that it is very versatile. You can pair it with fruits and vegetables, make it sweet, or turn it into a savory dipping sauce. You can also use it to make smoothies and shakes.
Fat-free Greek yogurt is widely available in supermarkets. You can pick it up every time you go grocery shopping.
You can boost your protein intake by adding the right ingredients to your diet. Lentils, being high in protein, can be one of the products that will add both color and nutrition into your diet.
Lentils are very versatile. There are a number of dishes you can make with lentils. From hearty stews to light salads, lentils can make you delicious lunches or dinners.
One cup of cooked lentils contains around 18 grams of protein which is quite a good amount especially if you are not a big fan of meat, chicken, or fish.
If you don’t have any problems with eating dairy, then you can certainly try increasing your protein intake by eating curd cheese, low-fat cottage cheese in particular.
There are around 12 grams of protein in 100 grams of low-fat cottage cheese.
You can eat it on its own after your workouts to assist muscle gain. You can also eat cottage cheese with fruits or season it to make it savory.
As low-fat cottage cheese is high in protein, including it in your meals will keep you full longer. Thus, you will avoid the risk of overeating.
For people who find that none of the abovementioned options work for them, nuts will certainly do. You can eat nuts as a snack or incorporate them in various recipes and in any meal of the day.
Nuts are not only a good source of protein but also omega-3 fatty acids and a number of nutrients and minerals.
All nuts are a source of protein. However, if you are looking for the variety that will add the most amount of protein to your diet, go with peanuts, almonds, and pistachios.
Going hand in hand with nuts are seeds. Adding flaxseeds or sunflower seeds to your breakfast bowls, salads, or smoothies will further boost your protein intake.