Some people assume that protein shakes are only used by bodybuilders and athletes to build mass. When you look at the packaging you will see an image of a hulk of a man in a g-string or a ripped pretty-boy with 8-pack abs and a chiseled jaw.
Unfortunately, many athletes and novice gym rats are unaware that they can use protein powder for weight management. It depends on how the product is used in combination with exercise and a diet focused on fat loss.
Today, we would like to discuss the most efficient ways to lose fat while simultaneously maintaining, and sometimes even gaining, muscle mass.
What is Protein Powder?
Most protein powder is a byproduct of milk or cheese-making. It is produced by taking off the top layer of the dairy, and then sending it off to the manufacturing plant for processing. The substance will undergo a microfiltration process to isolate the protein. Other protein powders can be plant or legume-based for those with a sensitivity to dairy products, vegetarians, and vegans.
Protein is a common supplement around the world, typically used to build muscle. For instance, the protein powder market is expected to be worth USD $32.5 billion by 2027. Meanwhile, the vitamins and supplements industry Down Under – to include protein powder Australia – was already worth $533 million in 2019.
How Protein Can Help You Lose Weight
As early as 2008, a study found that whey protein intake resulted in the weight loss of the test subjects within the 12-week period. They consumed protein shake 20 minutes before breakfast and another one 20 minutes before dinner.
Based on the study, the subjects “lost a significant amount of weight” and also maintained their lean muscle mass longer, while eating in a calorie deficit.
Another study published in 2011 confirmed that whey protein shakes will increase the metabolism of the body. More than that, the ready-to-mix beverage also helped reduce the insulin and blood glucose of the user. For those dealing with diabetes, the product could be one alternative since it has shown no effects on blood pressure or cholesterol levels.
How to Use Protein Shakes for Weight Management
You can use the protein shake to reduce the cravings for food. Since drinking one will make you feel full, you are less likely to eat food. People are conditioned to think that they have to eat three square meals a day.
However, with the rise of fad diets like intermittent fasting, that is not the case. You can train your body to reduce the amount of food intake each day.
The protein shake will also enhance GLP-1, CCK, and PPY, which are hormones responsible for controlling your appetite. For instance, if you make it a habit to drink a high-protein shake, you will consume fewer calories for the day. By increasing your protein intake daily to 30%, you will avoid consuming nearly 500 calories per day. As a bonus, you will also feel fewer cravings, particularly for late-night snacks.
There’s More Than Just Protein in Protein Powder
More good news is that you also get more than simple protein from whey products. The manufacturers usually add vitamins and minerals to the ingredients. For one, it helps your body absorb the protein better for maximum results. Some products also include vegetables and fruits within the powdered contents.
A change in diet is also recommended to optimize the results of your protein shake. For example, you might replace two meals with your protein shake, supplement with a few small whole-food snacks, and finish with one full meal. For a few extra calories and nutrients, you can add fruits and/or veggies to your protein shake, which will also enhance the flavor. To get a better idea of how much protein you need, read our post about how much protein to eat in a day.
This post written by Steve