The various protein powders on the market today have their pros and cons. I’m a personal fan of a few brands myself, and use them in my diet since I don’t prefer to eat, or like, animal protein. I also don’t actually like or tolerate legumes and beans well, so for me, a clean, raw protein powder works well to meet my protein needs. Sure, you could live your whole life and not use any at all and be just fine, or you could use them and be just fine too. It’s really a personal decision whether you use a protein powder or not. Just be sure if you do use one, to know the pros and cons of protein powders to make the smartest decision possible.
1. Pro: They’re Versatile
When it comes to pros and cons of protein powders, I’ll start with one of the most obvious pros they have: they’re versatile. You can literally use protein powders anywhere, anytime, and any way. Bake with them, drink them with plain water or your choice of milk, stir them into yogurt or oatmeal, make pancakes or waffles with them, stir them into soup ... literally anything goes. I even like making protein pudding with them! They’re so easy to use, and really enhance the taste of other recipes too.
2. Con: They’re Processed
All protein powders are processed - period. Even my favorite, Sunwarrior Raw Warrior Blend, which is the cleanest on the market aside from raw hemp protein powder, is still processed somewhat. All protein powders must take a whole food and process it into a powder. The key is to pick one without a lot of additives so you know you’re getting a clean protein powder with minimal processing. Do your homework before you spend your money!
3. Pro: They’re Cost Efficient
No matter how pricey protein powders might seem, per serving, they’re actually cost efficient in comparison to meat per serving. This, in my book, makes them easier and more affordable to use than most animal proteins outside of eggs.
4. Con: Too Many to Choose from
One con I think protein powders have is there are so many to choose from, it can seem overwhelming! From soy, whey, rice, hemp, pea, or certain blends of those ingredients, many people have no idea what to use and waste tons of money trying to figure out which one works the best.
5. Pro: They’re Flavored
So long as my protein powders are flavored with real food, like vanilla beans or real cocoa, I like this feature. What you want to stay away from are protein powders sweetened with sugar in any form, artificial sweeteners, and artificial flavorings. I like Sunwarrior for this very reason. Their raw Warrior Blend protein, contains only stevia to sweeten, plus real vanilla or real cocoa as a flavoring agent.
6. Con: Animal Derived
Many protein powders are animal derived. This makes them even more processed, since obviously they look nothing like their animal derivative. I mean, at least milk or beef looks like it came from a cow, but whey protein? Nope - not even close! For this reason, you want to be sure when you pick a protein powder, that you try to opt for a vegan option. I know vegan proteins are still processed, but in my opinion, hemp protein looks a lot closer to hemp seeds than whey protein looks like a cow. Don’t you think?
7. Pro: Amino Acids
Either way, whatever you decide, there’s no denying that protein powders offer an easy to digest, easy delivery method for amino acids. Amino acids are important for our glucose regulation, along with helping to build and maintain lean muscle. They’re also important for healthy brain and heart function. Be sure when you buy a protein powder it contains all essential amino acids. Most do, so don’t worry.
Do you use protein powders? You can find links to my favorite protein powders below. Let me know if you use any of these too!